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Nov. 20, 2001

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Tonight’s game is the first of two UVa contests in the John Thompson Classic. The Cavaliers will conclude play in the Classic December 20 when they meet Georgetown at the MCI Center.

Virginia stands at 2-0 this season after defeating Wagner 105-74 (Nov. 16) and East Tennessee State 85-62 (Nov. 18) in University Hall. UVa, which also won both of its exhibitions games this year, finished the 2000-2001 season with a 20-9 overall record and a 9-7 mark in the Atlantic Coast Conference in Pete Gillen’s third year as Virginia’s head coach. Howard opened the 2001-2002 season with a 76-68 overtime victory over Mercer University (Nov. 16) in Atlanta. The Bison finished the 2000-2001 season with a 10-18 overall record and an 8-10 mark in the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference.

Experimental Rules Being Used for Tonight’s Game

The following experimental rules are being used in tonight’s game.

— The free-throw and three-second lane will be widened to the NBA free-throw and three-second lane.

— No free throws shall be awarded to the offended team for a foul committed by a member of a team in control of the ball. Instead, the offended team will be awarded possession of the ball at a designated spot and play shall be resumed.

— Jump balls will be held at the center circle for all situations in which the alternating-possession arrow was used.

The Series vs. Howard

Tonight’s game is just Virginia’s second meeting with Howard. UVa won the initial meeting 100-64 on December 12, 1992 in University Hall.

Non-Conference Teams at University Hall

Virginia is 188-28 (.870) all-time in U-Hall against non-conference opponents since the building opened for the 1965-66 season. The Cavaliers have won 70 of their last 79 home games against non-conference opponents dating back to the 1989-90 season.

Virginia vs. the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference

The Cavaliers are 6-0 all-time against teams from the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC). Five of the previous six games against MEAC schools have been played at University Hall. UVa’s game against Hampton (Dec. 10) at the Hampton Convocation Center in the 1999-2000 season was the Cavaliers’ only away game against a MEAC opponent.

Virginia’s 102-56 win at Hampton in the 1999-2000 season was its last game against a MEAC opponent. UVa also defeated Hampton 116-66 in the 1998-99 season. Virginia’s other victories over MEAC schools came against North Carolina A&T (94-50) and Bethune-Cookman (109-49) during the 1994-95 season, Coppin State (63-61) in 1993-94, and Howard (100-64) in 1992-93.

UVa’s average margin of victory over MEAC teams is 39.7 points per game. If you take out the two point win over Coppin State, the average margin of victory jumps to 47.2 points per game. The Cavaliers are averaging 97.3 points per game while holding their MEAC opponents to 57.7 points per game.

Head Coach Pete Gillen

Pete Gillen is in his 17th season as a collegiate head coach and sports a 329-165 record for a .666 winning percentage. Gillen is in his fourth season at Virginia and has posted a 55-37 record (.598 winning percentage). Gillen won the 300th game of his career when Virginia defeated then 21st-ranked North Carolina 87-85 on January 18, 2000 at University Hall.

Gillen has led his teams to postseason play 13 times in 16 seasons (nine NCAA, four NIT). He has been selected as the conference Coach of the Year five times – all while coaching Xavier (Midwestern Collegiate Conference).

Cavalier Captains

Seniors Adam Hall and Chris Williams, and junior Roger Mason, Jr., have been elected captains of the 2001-02 Virginia basketball team by their teammates. Williams was one of the team’s tri-captains last season.

Virginia Returns to Postseason Play

The University of Virginia men’s basketball team received an invitation to the NCAA Tournament following the 2000-01 regular season. UVa lost to Gonzaga 86-85 in the first round of the 2001 NCAA South Region Tournament. The game marked the Cavaliers first NCAA Tournament appearance since 1997. It was also UVa’s second consecutive postseason appearance as the Cavaliers received a bid to the 2000 National Invitation Tournament (NIT). Virginia lost to Georgetown 115-111 in triple overtime in the first round of the NIT.

Maurice Young Leaves Team

Sophomore forward/guard Maurice Young has left the Virginia basketball team. Young has asked for and received his immediate release. He plans to remain at UVa through the end of the fall semester.

Young played in Virginia’s first two games and scored six points and had four rebounds in 21 minutes of action. As a freshman last season, Young played in 25 games and averaged 2.6 points, 1.3 rebounds and 6.7 minutes of playing time a game.

Pre-Season Prognostications

The Virginia men’s basketball team was ranked among the top teams in the nation in several preseason rankings.

UVa was ranked 10th by Lindy’s and 11th in the USAToday/ESPN and Associated Press preseason polls. Virginia was also ranked 11th by both The Sporting News and Street and Smith’s. The Cavaliers were ranked 13th by Basketball News, Dick Vitale and Sports Illustrated, and 16th by Slam magazine and

AP Ranking

Virginia’s ranking of 11th in the preseason Associated Press poll is its highest preseason AP ranking since the 1982-83 season when the Cavaliers were ranked number one in the nation. It is just the seventh time since the 1982-83 season UVa has been ranked in the AP’s preseason poll. Prior to the 1995-96 season, the Cavaliers were ranked 19th and were 14th in 1994-95. Virginia was 16th in the 1993-94 season, 18th in 1990-91, and 24th prior to last season.

Cavaliers Block 11 Buccaneer Shots

Virginia registered 11 blocked shots against East Tennessee State (Nov. 18) which ties for the sixth highest single game total in school history. The school record is 14 blocks vs. Army (Dec. 22, 1979). Last season, UVa’s highest single game blocked shot total was seven against Gonzaga in the first round of the NCAA Tournament.

In two games in the 2001-2002 season, the Cavaliers have registered 15 blocked shots for an average of 7.7 per game. Freshman forward Jason Clark leads UVa with five blocks in just 20 minutes of playing time.

Mathis Grabs Career-High 10 Rebounds

Sophomore forward J.C. Mathis set a career-high when he pulled down 10 rebounds against East Tennessee State (Nov. 18). His previous career best was nine rebounds against Maryland (Mar. 3, 2001).

Mathis also equaled his career high with two blocked shots against the Buccaneers.

Two Double-Doubles

Junior forward/center Travis Watson has opened the season with back-to-back double-doubles to increase his career total to 23. Watson tallied 11 points and 13 rebounds against Wagner (Nov. 16), and 14 points and 13 rebounds versus East Tennessee State (Nov. 18). Watson is tied with Maryland’s Lonny Baxter as the ACC’s active leader in career double-doubles. Watson is also eighth all-time at UVa with his 23 career double-doubles. Watson led the ACC a year ago with 13 double-doubles.

Senior forward Chris Williams recorded his 11th career double-double with 26 points and 10 rebounds against Wagner (Nov. 16). Williams is 19th on UVa’s all-time double-doubles list.

Cavaliers Welcome Seven Newcomers

Look for several new faces around the Cavaliers this season as the team welcomes five first-years and two transfer students to the program. Joining the returning lettermen from last season are first-years Elton Brown, Jason Clark, Bret Gladstone, Jermaine Harper, and Keith Jenifer. Also coming to the program are transfer students Todd Billet and Nick Vander Laan, who will not play in games this season.

Brown is a 6-9 forward from Warwick High School in Newport News, Va. A three-time team MVP and runner-up for the McDonald’s All-American team, Brown set a school record at Warwick with a total of 1,850 career points.

Clark is a 6-8 forward out of Hargrave Military Academy. He is originally from Virginia Beach, Va. In his final year at Hargrave he averaged 17 points, 10 rebounds, and four blocks a game in leading the team to a 27-1 record.

Gladstone is a 6-1 guard from Greenwich, Conn. He earned five varsity letters at the Brunswick School. Gladstone graduated as the school’s all-time leading scorer and the third-leading scorer in state history with 2,468 points.

Harper, who is from Gardena, Calif., is a 6-3 guard who played at the Blue Ridge School the last three years. He was named the 2001 Central Virginia Player-of-the-Year by the Charlottesville Daily Progress after averaging 21.2 points, 5.7 rebounds, 4.3 assists and 2.3 steals a game his senior season.

Jenifer is a 6-3 guard who played at Hargrave Military Academy last season. He is from Baltimore, Md., and played four years at Towson Catholic High School in Baltimore before attending Hargrave last year. At Towson Catholic he was named first-team All-State and garnered several other awards following his senior season.

Billet is a 6-0 guard from Middletown, N.J. He started all 58 games for Rutgers the last two seasons and averaged 14.6 points per game. He is a three-point specialist who established the Rutgers’ school record for three-pointers in a season with 82 and tied the single-game record when he made eight three-pointers against Lafayette during the 2000-01 season.

Vander Laan is a 6-10 center from Sacramento, Calif. He transferred to Virginia from California-Berkeley where he averaged 7.5 points and 6.1 rebounds per game in two seasons. He was voted honorable mention Pac-10 All-Freshman following the 1999-2000 season.

Four Starters Return for 2001-2002

Four the second consecutive season, the Cavaliers return four starters -Roger Mason, Jr., Chris Williams, Adam Hall, and Travis Watson. Those four players are the only players on the team who had started a game at UVa prior to this season. Last season, Mason, Williams, Hall and Watson combined for:
64.0 percent (724 of 1131) of the team’s rebounds
63.3 percent (140 of 221) of the team’s steals
61.9 percent (1526 of 2464) of the team’s points
58.8 percent (3373 of 5800) of the team’s minutes
45.2 percent (190 of 420) of the team’s assists

At Home in University Hall

Virginia went 14-1 overall at home during the 2000-01 season and has gone 27-4 at University Hall over the past three seasons, including 2-0 this year. UVa had the best home winning percentage (.933) in the Atlantic Coast Conference last season. The Cavaliers won seven of eight games at home against conference opponents, joining North Carolina as the only other team in the ACC to lose just one conference game at home last season. Over the past two seasons Virginia has gone 13-3 at home against ACC opponents, which ties the Cavaliers with Duke over that span.

Success Outside of Conference

Virginia went a perfect 11-0 against non-conference opponents during the 2000-01 regular season. This mark included wins against Purdue, Ohio, Tennessee, Missouri and Virginia Tech. The last time Virginia went undefeated in non-conference regular season play was in 1981-82 when the Cavaliers won all 15 of their regular season non-conference games and finished 30-4 overall.

This season UVa plays 12 games against non-conference foes, including games against Auburn, Georgetown, Michigan State, Missouri, Rutgers and Virginia Tech.

UVa Downs ETSU 85-62 to Improve to 2-0

Virginia used a balanced scoring effort to post an 85-62 win over East Tennessee State November 18 at University Hall.

Junior guard Roger Mason, Jr., led all scorers with 20 points, while senior forward/guard Adam Hall chipped in with 19 points, including 15 in the second half. Junior forward/center Travis Watson registered his second double-double of the season with 14 points and 13 rebounds and added three blocked shots. Senior forward Chris Williams contributed 13 points and three steals. Sophomore forward J.C. Mathis pulled down a career-high 10 rebounds, while freshman forward Jason Clark established a career high with three blocked shots.

The Cavaliers, who never trailed in the game, used a 14-1 run midway through the first half to open up a 36-19 lead. UVa took a 42-31 lead at the intermission. Virginia never saw its lead fall below 11 points (44-33) and led by as many as 27 points (69-42 and 76-49) in the second half.

UVa made 31 of 41 free throw attempts in the game for 75.6 percent and blocked 11 ETSU shots.

Jerald Fields and Zakee Wadood tallied 12 points and six rebounds apiece to lead the Buccaneers.Cavaliers Defeat Wagner 105-74 in Season Opener

Five players scored in double figures as Virginia successfully opened the 2001-2002 season with a 105-74 victory over Wagner College November 16 at University Hall. Senior forward Chris Williams and junior forward/center Travis Watson notched double-doubles to lead UVa.

Williams paced all scorers with 26 points, including an 11-13 shooting effort from the field. He also grabbed 10 rebounds for the double-double. Watson pulled down a game-high 13 rebounds to go with 11 points for his double-double. Junior guard Roger Mason, Jr., registered 24 points, including five three-point field goals, and dished out a career-best nine assists. Senior forward/guard Adam Hall and freshman forward Elton Brown rounded out the Cavaliers’ double-figure scorers. Hall had 18 points, while Brown made eight of nine shots from the field for his 16 points.

With the score tied at 4-4, UVa went on an 18-2 run to take a 22-6 lead with 12:52 left in the first half. The Seahawks slowly crept back in the game and narrowed the deficit to three, 39-36, with 4:45 to go in the opening half. The Cavaliers closed the half with a 20-6 run to take a 59-42 advantage at intermission. The closest Wagner got in the second half was 13, 61-48, with 18:11 left in the game. UVa led by as many as 33 points (103-70) in the second half.

UVa shot 59.2 percent (42-71) from the field in the game and made 6-11 three-point attempts (54.5 percent). The Cavaliers also dominated the rebounding department as they held a 50-36 advantage.

Jermaine Hall led the Seahawks with 18 points and eight rebounds.

UVa Completes Exhibition Season with 98-69 Victory

The Cavaliers concluded the exhibition portion of the 2001-02 season with a 98-69 victory over the L.A. Stars November 11 at University Hall.

Senior forward Chris Williams led all players with 21 points, 12 rebounds and three blocks. Junior guard Roger Mason, Jr., went a perfect 8-8 from the free throw line, as he added 20 points for the Cavaliers. Other Virginia players to score in double figures included junior forward/center Travis Watson, and freshmen Jermaine Harper and Elton Brown. Watson scored 14 points on 6-9 (.666) shooting from the field and pulled down seven rebounds. Harper started the game for Virginia and scored 10 points, while making both of his three-point attempts. Brown came off the bench to contribute 10 points and 10 rebounds.

Three players scored in double figures for L.A., led by Jelani Janisee and Byron Wilson, who scored 11 points apiece. Derrick Anderson scored 10 points and pulled down seven rebounds for the Stars. Janisee also had eight rebounds and six assists in the losing effort.

Virginia never trailed in the contest as Mason opened the game with a three-pointer. Mason’s two free throws with five seconds remaining in the first half gave the Cavaliers a 26-point lead (50-24) at the break. Late in the second half UVa took its largest lead of the contest as Harper a hit three-pointer to give Virginia a 34-point lead (93-59) with 2:37 remaining in the game. The Cavaliers outrebounded the Stars 58-37 and forced 17 turnovers. UVa outshot L.A. 43.4 percent (36-83) to 33.3 percent (23-69).Cavaliers Open Exhibition Season with 82-70 Win

Virginia began the exhibition portion of its 2001-02 season with an 82-70 victory over the Nantucket Nectars November 2 at University Hall.

Junior forward/center Travis Watson led all scorers with 24 points on 12-15 shooting from the field. Watson also pulled down 10 rebounds for the Cavaliers and added three blocked shots. Senior forward Chris Williams also recorded a double-double with 17 points and a game-high 13 rebounds. Williams also led all players with six assists. Joining Watson and Williams in double figures were junior guard Roger Mason, Jr., and sophomore forward J.C. Mathis. Mason scored 14 points and added four assists, while Mathis registered 10 points and six rebounds.

Tim Fudd led the Nectars with 23 points and eight rebounds. Nii Nelson Richards contributed 14 points.

The Cavaliers shot 50 percent from the field (36-72) while holding the Nectars to 38.5 percent (25-65). The Nectars shot 44 percent from behind the arc (11-25). Virginia also outrebounded the Nectars by a 48-30 margin. UVa only trailed once in the game, after Fudd scored the first basket of the contest to give the Nectars a 2-0 lead 14 seconds into the game. The Cavaliers took the lead for good on a field goal by freshman forward Elton Brown with 14:16 remaining in the first half that gave UVa a 16-14 lead. Virginia stretched its lead to as many as 14 points (41-27) in the first half before taking a 43-31 halftime advantage.

Half of Games against Tournament Teams

Of Virginia’s 28 regular-season games before the 2002 ACC Tournament, 14 are against nine teams that participated in either the 2001 NCAA Tournament or the National Invitation Tournament (NIT). Five of the games are against three of last year’s Final Four teams, with two games against Duke, two against Maryland, and one game against Michigan State. In addition to those games, Virginia plays Georgetown, a team that made it to the NCAA Tournament’s Sweet Sixteen, and three games against teams that advanced to the tournament’s second round (North Carolina twice and Missouri). UVa’s other games against 2001 NCAA Tournament participants are versus Georgia Tech (twice) and Wake Forest (twice). Virginia also takes on Auburn, a team that advanced to the second round of last season’s NIT.

Mapp Out

Sophomore guard Majestic Mapp will miss the 2001-02 season because of another operation on his injured right knee. Mapp also missed the 2000-01 season after tearing the anterior cruciate ligament in the knee and undergoing surgery in late August 2000. He injured the knee while playing basketball at St. Raymond’s High School, his alma mater, on August 2, 2000.

Mapp was second on the team in assists in 1999-2000 (2.2 apg) and ranked fourth among all Atlantic Coast Conference freshmen in that category. He averaged 5.3 points a game and was named to the ACC Honor Roll for his academic work and athletic participation.

Mason Competes at World University Games

Junior Roger Mason, Jr., looks to bring his experiences from a busy off-season to the court for Virginia during the 2001-02 season. The 6-5 guard competed on the 2001 USA Basketball World University Games Team and helped lead the team to a bronze medal. Mason scored 13 points and grabbed five rebounds in the bronze medal game against Germany. He started all eight games for the U.S. squad and averaged 13.0 points and 4.8 rebounds per game.

Mason is also among the Top 50 Preseason Candidates for the 2001-02 Wooden Award All-America Basketball Team. The Top 50 candidates were selected in a national poll conducted of The John R. Wooden Award Preseason Committee.

His selections to the USA Basketball World University Games Team and the Top 50 Preseason Candidates for the 2001-02 Wooden Award All-America Basketball Team follow a superb sophomore season for Mason. During the 2000-01 season he led the Cavaliers and was sixth in the ACC in scoring with an average of 15.7 points per game. He also established a UVa record and led the ACC last season by making 88.4 percent (122-138) of his free throw attempts. Mason earned third-team All-ACC honors and was co-recipient of UVa’s Bill Gibson Cavalier of the Year Award.

Watson Rebounds

Junior forward/center Travis Watson has put up some impressive rebounding numbers the last two seasons. During the 2000-01 season he joined Ralph Sampson as the only players in Virginia basketball history to collect 500 or more rebounds in their first two varsity seasons. He currently has 548 career rebounds and is averaging 13.0 rebounds per game in 2001-2002.

Watson is the ACC’s top returning rebounder after ranking second in the conference (9.1 rpg) last season. He is tied with Maryland’s Lonny Baxter for the conference lead in career double-doubles (23) among active players.

Watson earned second-team All-ACC recognition and was co-recipient of UVa’s Bill Gibson Cavalier of the Year Award last season.

Schedule Change

There is one date change on Virginia’s 2001-02 men’s basketball schedule. UVa’s game with Florida State in Charlottesville, previously scheduled for January 19, will be played on January 20 at 4:00 p.m.

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