Washington State Cougars men's basketball

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Washington State Cougars
2014–15 Washington State Cougars men's basketball team
Washington State Cougars athletic logo
University Washington State University
Conference Pac-12
Location Pullman, WA
Head coach Ernie Kent (1st year)
Arena Beasley Coliseum
(Capacity: 11,566)
Nickname Cougars
Colors

Crimson and Gray

            
Uniforms
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Home jersey
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Team colours
Home
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Away jersey
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Team colours
Away
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Alternate jersey
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Team colours
Alternate
Pre-tournament Premo-Porretta champions
1917
Pre-tournament Helms champions
1917
NCAA Tournament Final Four
1941
NCAA Tournament Elite Eight
1941
NCAA Tournament Sweet Sixteen
1941, 2008
NCAA Tournament appearances
1941, 1980, 1983, 1994, 2007, 2008
Conference regular season champions
1917, 1941

The Washington State Cougars men's basketball team represents Washington State University and competes in the Pacific-12 Conference (Pac-12) of NCAA Division I. The Cougars play their home games at Beasley Coliseum, which has a capacity of 11,566.

Men's basketball is the second-most popular sport at Washington State, although its popularity is rapidly increasing after the 2006-2007 season.[1]

History[edit]

In 1936, the Cougars were retroactively awarded the 1917 National Championship by the Helms Athletic Foundation.[2] The team played to large crowds in the late-1970s when George Raveling was head coach.

For the better part of seven decades, the Cougars were a consistent contender in the Pac-10 and its predecessor, the Pacific Coast Conference. However, after Kelvin Sampson left for Oklahoma in 1994, the program floundered for most of the rest of the 1990s and the early part of the 21st century. However, there was the beginning of a resurgence under coach Dick Bennett. The 2004-05 season saw a large increase in student support as the team finished within a few wins of a .500 record (along with a stunning upset win against eventual Elite Eight team Arizona). Bennett retired at the end of the 2005-06 season and was replaced by his son, Tony. Before becoming head coach, Tony Bennett spent three seasons as an assistant to his father, the last three seasons as head coach before leaving for the University of Virginia.[citation needed]

2006-07[edit]

In 2007, following a win against then No. 7 Arizona, the Cougars appeared in the Associated Press Top 25 poll for the first time since 1983. Picked to finish last in the Pac-10 in a pre-season media poll, the Cougars surprised everyone[who?] by finishing second in the conference and peaking with a No. 4 ranking.[citation needed] The Cougars earned a #3 seed in the NCAA Tournament and beat Oral Roberts 70–54 in the first round. The Cougars then lost to Vanderbilt in the second round 78–74 in double overtime. Their final record was 13–5 in the Pac-10 and 26–8 overall, which tied the school record for most wins in a season. During the 2006–07 season, the Cougars swept rival Washington, Arizona, Arizona State, USC, Oregon State, and California. In the tournament, the coaching staff wore a pin saying TAY, which stood for Turn-Around Year. After the season, Coach Tony Bennett received the Naismith Coach of the Year award, the highest honor for a college basketball coach.

2007-08[edit]

In 2008, the Cougars returned to the NCAA Tournament. The Cougars earned a #4 seed and were matched up against #13 seed Winthrop University. The Cougars dominated in the second half after a 29–29 tie in the first half to finish 71–40, far beyond the 9 point margin they were favored by.[3]

The second round put them up against #5 seed Notre Dame who was favored by 2.5 points.[citation needed] The Cougars surprised the media and viewers nationwide.[citation needed] The Cougars were in control throughout the contest and ended the game with a 61-41 victory. Held to 41 points, the Fighting Irish finished their final game well below their points per game average.[citation needed]

After two straight victories in the NCAA Tournament, the Cougars headed to the Sweet Sixteen for the second time in school history. In the Sweet Sixteen, Washington State was matched against the #1 overall seed North Carolina. During the first half, both teams seem evenly matched, but North Carolina took control in the second half and won by a score of 68–47.[4] The Cougars finished the 2007–08 season with a record of 26–9.

Coaches[edit]

Head coach Tony Bennett announced that he was leaving Washington State to take the head coaching job at Virginia following the 2008-09 season.[5] Bennett, who became head coach after his father Dick Bennett's retirement, finished the season with a 17-16 record. The previous years, he led the Cougars to consecutive NCAA tournament appearances. Both the father and son coached for three years at the school.

John B. Evans (1901–03)
James N. Ashmore (1904–05)
Everett M. Sweeley (1905–07)
John R. Bender (1907–08)
Fred Bohler (1908–26)
Karl Schlademan (1926–28)
Jack Friel (1928–58)
Marv Harshman (1959–71)
Bob Greenwood (1971–72)
George Raveling (1972–83)
Len Stevens (1983–87)
Kelvin Sampson (1987–94)
Kevin Eastman (1994–99)
Paul Graham (1999-2003)
Dick Bennett (2003–06)
Tony Bennett (2006–09)
Ken Bone (2009–2014)
Ernie Kent (2014–present)

Postseason[edit]

NCAA Tournament results[edit]

The Cougars have appeared in six NCAA Tournaments. Their combined record is 6–6.

Year Round Opponent Result/Score
1941 First Round
Final Four
Championship Game
Creighton
Arkansas
Wisconsin
W 48–39
W 64–53
L 34–39
1980 First Round Pennsylvania L 55–62
1983 First Round
Second Round
Weber State
Virginia
W 62–52
L 49–54
1994 First Round Boston College L 64–67
2007 First Round
Second Round
Oral Roberts
Vanderbilt
W 70–54
L 74–78 2OT
2008 First Round
Second Round
Sweet Sixteen
Winthrop
Notre Dame
North Carolina
W 71–40
W 61–41
L 47–68

NIT results[edit]

The Cougars have appeared in five National Invitation Tournaments (NIT). Their combined record is 7–5.

Year Round Opponent Result/Score
1992 First Round
Quarterfinals
Minnesota
New Mexico
W 72–70
L 71–79
1995 First Round
Sweet Sixteen
Elite Eight
Texas Tech
Illinois State
Canisius
W 94–82
W 83–80
L 80–99
1996 First Round
Sweet Sixteen
Gonzaga
Nebraska
W 92–73
L 73–82
2009 First Round Saint Mary's L 57–68
2011 First Round
Second Round
Quarterfinals
Semifinals
Long Beach State
Oklahoma State
Northwestern
Wichita State
W 85–74
W 74–64
W 69–66 OT
L 44–75

CBI results[edit]

The Cougars have appeared in one College Basketball Invitational (CBI). Their combined record is 4–2.

Year Round Opponent Result/Score
2012 First Round
Quarterfinals
Semifinals
Finals Game 1
Finals Game 2
Finals Game 3
San Francisco
Wyoming
Oregon State
Pittsburgh
Pittsburgh
Pittsburgh
W 89–75
W 61–41
W 72–55
W 67–66
L 53–57
L 65–71

Rivalries[edit]

Gonzaga[edit]

Gonzaga University is a Jesuit university in Spokane, Washington, about 75 miles north of Washington State University.[6] As of the 2013–14 season, Washington State has a 98–50 lead in the all-time series against the Gonzaga Bulldogs in a series that began in 1907 and has most recently been played annually since 2001.[7] The Gonzaga/WSU game on December 5, 2007 marked the first time the two schools played each other as ranked teams.[8] Washington State, ranked #6 in the AP Poll, won over #19 Gonzaga 51-47.[9]

Idaho[edit]

Currently an out-of-conference series, Washington State has played the Idaho Vandals annually since 1906 in a rivalry dubbed the Battle of the Palouse, derived from the fact that Washington State University and the University of Idaho are fewer than 8 miles apart in the Palouse. Washington State has a 162–108 lead in the series as of December 3, 2014; in the latest game in the series, Idaho won 77-71 in Idaho's first win over Washington State since 2002.[10][11]

Washington[edit]

The University of Washington is the flagship state university in Washington. As of 2014, the Washington Huskies have a 177–101 lead in the series vs. Washington State that began in 1910.[12]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Washington State men's basketball
  2. ^ List of Helms Champs
  3. ^ The Daily Evergreen Online - News - Local
  4. ^ Hansbrough, UNC roll past Wazzu into Elite Eight
  5. ^ Virginia to name Bennett coach
  6. ^ Kaplan, Ben (December 3, 2012). "Gonzaga and Washington State prepare to meet again". KXLY. Retrieved December 4, 2014. 
  7. ^ "All-time opponents: Gonzaga", 2014-15 Washington State Basketball (Washington State Cougars): 36 
  8. ^ Geranios, Nicholas K. (December 4, 2007). "Cats and 'Dogs, ranked together: Washington State, Gonzaga meet as Top 25 teams for first time". USA Today. Associated Press. Retrieved December 4, 2014. 
  9. ^ "No. 6 Washington State Defeats No. 19 Gonzaga, 51-47". wsucougars.com. Associated Press. December 5, 2007. Retrieved December 4, 2014. 
  10. ^ "Vandals win!". Idaho Vandals. December 3, 2014. Retrieved December 3, 2014. 
  11. ^ "All-time opponents: Idaho", 2014-15 Washington State Basketball (Washington State Cougars): 36–37 
  12. ^ "Pac-12 opponents: Washington", 2014-15 Washington State Basketball (Washington State Cougars): 34 

External links[edit]