Miller’s Wildcats prepare for road trip

Feb 3, 2011, 12:23 AM | Updated: 12:24 am

The Arizona Wildcats are in a zone, and much of the credit for their 18-4 (7-2) record can be attributed to facing the zone for much of the season.

Teams, concerned with stopping Derrick Williams, would turn to the defense in order to turn the Wildcats into a jump-shooting team. Lately, those shots are starting to fall.

“I think on offense we’ve really settled in and, like a lot of teams do, as the season’s grown we’ve become better on offense,” Arizona head coach Sean Miller said.

The Wildcats enter this weekend’s games at Stanford (11-9, 4-5) and California (12-9, 5-4) averaging 77.2 points per game, second best in the conference, while surrendering 64.9. They are riding a three game win streak, and have lost just once in their last six games.

However, as Miller has said, of the nine conference regular season games left for his team five will be on the road, away from the friendly McKale Center where Arizona has not yet lost in 13 tries. Being tied for first at this point is not new to the team, as they were in a similar spot just last season only to finish with 16 wins and a 10-8 conference mark. Miller, though, said there are some key differences between the teams.

“This year’s team is better; we’re deeper, we’re a year older in what we’re doing,” he said. “Derrick Williams is at a completely different level as a player this year as opposed to his freshman year, much better on defense.”

Williams and his team will certainly be tested this weekend as the Wildcats take to the road for what will be three straight away games, starting with a Thursday trip to Stanford.

Led by Jeremy Green’s 14.2 points per game, Stanford gets another shot at an Arizona team that beat them 67-57 in early January. Miller said the Wildcats, in order to avoid the upset, must find a way to score against a good defense.

“I don’t know if anyone in our conference has scored 70 points on them,” Miller said when talking about Stanford’s defense. “You have to give credit where credit’s due.”

Miller said Arizona cannot rely on forcing Stanford mistakes in order to get the offense going, as they will need to execute their game plan.

“They’re not the type of team that beats themselves on defense,” he said.

Arizona Basketball

Caleb Love, North Carolina transfer, Arizona Wildcats...

Arizona Sports

North Carolina transfer Caleb Love commits to Arizona hoops

Caleb Love, who led the North Carolina Tar Heels in scoring, announced Tuesday that he will transfer to join the Arizona Wildcats.

3 days ago

Conrad Martinez Arizona Wildcats...

Jake Anderson

Wildcats hoops nabs commitment from Spanish guard Conrad Martinez

Joventut Badalona point guard Conrad Martinez of Spain committed to play basketball for the Arizona Wildcats on Thursday.

8 days ago

Keshad Johnson #0 of the San Diego State Aztecs celebrates by cutting down the net after defeating ...

Arizona Sports

Arizona basketball lands San Diego State transfer Keshad Johnson

San Diego State transfer Keshad Johnson announced his commitment to Arizona on Saturday at a gathering with head coach Tommy Lloyd present.

13 days ago

Pelle Larsson #3 of the Arizona Wildcats handles the ball against the UCLA Bruins in the first half...

Kellan Olson

Arizona guard Pelle Larsson returning after testing draft waters

Arizona guard Pelle Larsson is returning to the program next season after he briefly tested the NBA Draft waters, he announced on Instagram.

17 days ago

Tommy Lloyd...

Arizona Sports

Lithuanian big Motiejus Krivas commits to Arizona basketball

Lithuanian Motiejus Krivas told ESPN on Tuesday he has committed to the Arizona Wildcats, giving Tommy Lloyd's roster its fourth 7-footer.

17 days ago

Oumar Ballo #11 of the Arizona Wildcats is fouled by Maxime Raynaud #42 of the Stanford Cardinal in...

Arizona Sports

Arizona basketball schedules Thanksgiving Day game vs. Michigan State

The Arizona Wildcats men's basketball team will face the Michigan State Spartans on Thanksgiving of 2023.

18 days ago

Miller’s Wildcats prepare for road trip