Santa Clara Travels to Arizona for NIT Season Tip-off -- Play UAB on Monday; Arizona/Florida Atlantic Tuesday

Santa Clara Travels to Arizona for NIT Season Tip-off -- Play UAB on Monday; Arizona/Florida Atlantic Tuesday

Nov. 15, 2008

Santa Clara, 1-0, travels to Tucson, Ariz., to play in the first round of the Dick's Sporting Goods NIT Season Tip-off Tournament vs. UAB, 1-0, on Mon., Nov. 17 at 5 pm. The two teams will play either Arizona or Florida Athletic on Tues., Nov. 18 with the time to be announced.

Bronco head coach Kerry Keating won his second straight opening day game as a head coach and the school's fifth straight with a 68-40 win over CSU East Bay on Fri., Nov. 14 at the Leavey Center. Senior John Bryant collected his 25th career double-double with 19 points and 11 rebounds.

UAB is coming off an 87-66 win at Troy on Sat., Nov. 15. Paul Delaney led all scorers with 24 points, hitting 9 of 11 from the free throw line. Lawrence Kinnard picked up the his first double-double of the year, adding 22 points and 13 rebounds.


Santa Clara basketball games are broadcast live via the Bronco Radio Network, which consists of KDOW-AM 1220 and Broncos All-Access on the web at Anthony Passarelli is in his second season as the men's play-by-play announcer after six seasons of handling those duties for SCU women's basketball.

vs. UAB

Santa Clara and UAB are tied 1-1 against each other, with both wining on the opponent's home court. The two's last meeting was in Birmingham in 1994 when the Broncos won 80-65 playing in the Blazer Classic. UAB played in the 1991 Cable Car Classic, winning the title with an 88-84 win over West Virginia as Elbert Rogers picked up MVP honors.

UAB head coach Mike Davis is in his third season with the Blazers, collecting a 39-27 record along the way, including 1-0 this season. The 2002 National Coach of the Year, Davis was previously the head coach at Indiana (2000-06) and led the Hoosiers to the 2002 NCAA Championship game before falling to Maryland 64-52.

The Blazers return four starters and 10 letterwinners for a team that finished at 23-11 last year and advanced to the second round of the NIT before falling at Virginia Tech 75-49.

A Couple Things

They are The University of Alabama at Birmingham or UAB. They ask you NOT to call them Alabama-Birmingham, Ala.-Birmingham, Ala.-Birm., UA-Birmingham or U.A.B.

The Blazers enter their 14th season in Conference USA this season (since 1995). Previously they were members of the Great Midwest for four years (1991-95) and the Sun Belt Conference for 12 years (1979-1991).

UAB has been a member of the University of Alabama system since 1969, they have competed in intercollegiate athletic programs since 1977 and in basketball beginning in 1978. Gene Bartow was the Blazers head coach from 1978-1996, posting a 366-203 record, before his son Murry Bartow took over the reigns for six season, posting a 103-83 record. During its 30 year history, the Blazers have advanced to the NCAA Tournament 13 times, including the 1982 NCAA Elite Eight; and the NIT nine times, including the NIT Final Four twice (1990, '94).

Broncos Start Season with Win

Led by John Bryant's 25th career double-double, SCU opened this year's campaign with a 68-40 win over CSU East Bay on Fri., Nov. 14. Bryant scored 19 points and added 11 rebounds and two blocks. The win over CSU East Bay was Bronco head coach Kerry Keating's second straight opening day win and the school's fifth in a row. Keating was happy with the win, but looks for the young Bronco team to build on the experience.

"It was a learning experience for our guys," said Keating. "They can only learn so much in practice. But they are eager, willing to learn and very competitive. Troy and James played well. It's a win. It's a good start for us and now it's all about getting ready for UAB on Monday."

The Broncos put four players in double figures with Bryant leading all scorers with 19. James Rahon scored 12, Michael Santos scored 11 and Perry Petty scored 10, adding three assists. Santos also put up four assists.

Santa Clara turned the ball over 20 times to the Pioneers 17 times. The Broncos shot 59.6% to CSUEB's own 29.4% effort. Santa Clara doubled up on the Pioneers rebounding effort, grabbing 40 to East Bay's own 20.