March 16, 2004
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Florida State, which played in the championship game of the 1997 NIT, makes its first postseason appearance since 1998 when it advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament as it travels to play Wichita State in the first round of the 2004 Owings Corning NIT at the Charles Koch Arena in Wichita, Kan. The game marks the first meeting between the Seminoles and the Shockers in the sport of men’s basketball. Florida State is making its fourth appearance in the NIT with its first three coming in 1984 (second round), 1987 (second round) and 1997 (championship round, national runners-up). The Seminoles have a 6-3 record in the event with at least one victory coming in all three appearances and four victories coming during the 1997 NIT. The Seminoles defeated Syracuse, Michigan State, West Virginia and Connecticut before falling to Michigan in the 1997 NIT. Florida State enters Wednesday’s game against Wichita State with a 12-2 record against non-ACC opponents. The Seminoles won their first 10 games of the season (a school record) against teams outside of the ACC before falling to Pittsburgh (Dec. 22, 63-58) in the championship game of the University of Pittsburgh Holiday Hoops Classic. The Seminoles only other loss to non-conference team came at Florida (Jan. 3, 73-87). The winner of Wednesday’s game between Florida State and Wichita State will play the winner of Wednesday’s Georgia at Iowa State game. The date and time of the second round games will be determined after the first round games have been played.
ALL-AMERICA CANDIDATE Tim Pickett
All-America candidate Tim Pickett, a 2004 All-ACC First-Team selection, enters the 2004 Owings Corning NIT as the fourth leading scorer in the ACC with a 16.5 points per game average. He has scored in double figures in five consecutive games and is averaging 21.0 ppg in the last five games. He has scored at least 23 points in four of the last five games and has scored at least 20 points 10 times this season. In addition, he is ranked 17th in the nation with a 2.5 steals per game and 10th in the nation with a 3.3 3-point field goals made per game average. Pickett, who has made a career-high 104 3-point field goals this season, is one of only five players in the nation who has made 100 or more 3-point field goals. Pickett became only the second player in Florida State history to earn All-ACC First-Team honors last week when he was accorded the honor by the Atlantic Coast Sports Media Association prior to the beginning of the ACC Tournament. Pickett joined Bob Sura, a nine-year NBA player and current member of the Atlanta Hawks, who earned the honor in 1994.
LOOK FOR FLORIDA STATE TO…
…Win its first round game in the NIT for the fourth consecutive time. The Seminoles have appeared in the NIT three times prior to this season and have won its opening round game during each of its three appearances;
…Win a postseason game (NCAA or NIT) for the first time since the 1998 NCAA Tournament when the Seminoles defeated Texas Christian. Florida State defeated the Horned Frogs, 96-87, before falling to Valparaiso, 83-77 in overtime, in the second round;
…Defeat a team from the Missouri Valley Conference for the first time since March 18, 1993 when the Seminoles defeated Evansville, 82-70, in the first round of the NCAA Tournament. The Seminoles are 4-7 against current members of the MVC with all games but their victory over Evansville coming before the 1977 season.
PICKETT SURPASSES 1,000 POINT MARK
All-America candidate Tim Pickett, a 2004 All-ACC First-Team selection, scored 23 points against NC State in the quarterfinal round of the 2004 ACC Tournament and became the 37th player in school history to surpass the 1,000 point scored plateau. Pickett’s 1,000th career point came on his third 3-point shot of the second half which put the Seminoles up 40-34 with 18:25 remaining in the game. He enters Wednesday’s game against Wichita State with 1,006 career points and ranks 36th in school history in scoring. If Pickett reaches or surpasses his season total of 16.5 points per game against the Shockers, he would move from 36th place into 33rd place on the Seminoles’ all-time scoring list.
FLORIDA STATE IN THE NCAA STATISTICS…
…Florida State is ranked 10th in the nation in 3-point field goals made per game with an 8.7 mark;
…Florida State is ranked 24th in the nation in field goal percentage defense with a .398 mark;
…Florida State is ranked 29th in the nation in steals per game with a 9.0 spg mark;
…Tim Pickett is ranked 10th in the nation in 3-point field goals made per game with a 3.3 mark;
…Tim Pickett is ranked 17th in the nation in steals per game with a 2.5 spg mark.
HAMILTON HAS THE STEALS RATE ON THE RISE
Florida State, which averages 9.2 steals per game during the two-year tenure of head coach Leonard Hamilton, is ranked 29th in the nation in team steals per game entering the 2004 Owings Corning NIT. Florida State is averaging 8.9 steals per game this season more then nine steals per game during the first 60 games of the Leonard Hamilton era in Tallahassee. The Seminoles ranked second in the conference statistics in 2002-03 with a 9.4 steals per game average. Florida State’s 277 steals this season is the fourth highest single season team total in school history. Under Hamilton in the last two seasons, the Seminoles have recorded two of the top seven single season totals in school history.
SEMINOLES FROM BEYOND THE ARC
Florida State has made a single-season school record and ACC leading 273 3-point shots entering The 2004 Owings Corning NIT. The Seminoles are averaging a conference leading 8.8 3-point shots made per game and have made 41 3-point shots more than their closest competition in the ACC – Georgia Tech which has made 232 shots from beyond the arc. In the last five games, the Seminoles have made 50 shots from beyond the arc – an average of 10.0 per game. Florida State made a single-game school record 17 3-point shots against Stetson (Dec. 30, 87-72 victory) and have scored more than 37 percent of their point total for the season (819 of 2209) from the bonusphere.
FLORIDA STATE IN NON-CONERENCE GAMES UNDER Leonard Hamilton
Florida State was 12-2 against non-conference opponents this season and 10-3 against non-ACC opponents for a two-year total of 22-5 for a winning percentage of .815. The Seminoles won their first 10 non-conference games of the 2003-04 season with its only losses coming at Pittsburgh and at Florida. Florida State’s only two non-conference losses last season came at Florida and against Boston University in the University of Arizona Tournament. The Seminoles have won 15 of their last 17 games (.882) against teams who don’t call the ACC home.
PROBABLE STARTERS FOR FLORIDA STATE…
F #20 Andrew Wilson (3.4 ppg, 1.5 rpg; Avg 3.7 ppg, 1.4 rpg in 14 gms vs. non-ACC oppts)
F #51 Adam Waleskowski (6.5 ppg, 5.1 rpg; Avg. 5.1 ppg, 5.1 rpg in 15 gms vs. non-ACC oppts)
C #32 Alexander Johnson (9.5 ppg, 4.2 rpg; Avg 8.8 ppg, 4.1 rpg in 15 gms vs. non-ACC oppts)
G #10 Nate Johnson (5.3 ppg, 3.9 apg; Avg 4.7 ppg, 4.3 apg in 15 gms vs. non-ACC oppts)
G #22 Tim Pickett (16.5 ppg, 2.5 spg; Avg 16.1 ppg, 2.7 spg in 15 gms vs. non-ACC oppts)
AND TOP RESERVES…
G #4 Todd Galloway (3.4 ppg, 2.3 apg; Avg 3.7 ppg, 3.1 apg in 15 gms vs. non-ACC oppts)
F #1 Michael Joiner (5.9 ppg, 3.7 rpg; Avg 5.7 ppg, 3.8 rpg in 15 gms vs. non-ACC oppts)
F #12 Al Thornton (2.9 ppg, 1.9 rpg; Avg 4/2 ppg, 2.9 rpg in 14 games vs. non-ACC oppts)
G #23 Von Wafer (7.8 ppg, 1.9 rpg; Avg 8.5 ppg, 1.6 rpg in 14 gms vs. non-ACC oppts)
C #33 Mike Mathews (2.2 ppg, 1.9 rpg; Avg. 31. ppg, 2.6 rpg in 14 gms vs. non-ACC oppts)
F #54 Anthony Richardson (7.7 ppg, 3.7 rpg; Avg 10.6 ppg, 4.6 rpg in 15 gms vs. non-ACC oppts)
PROBABLE STARTERS FOR WICHITA STATE
F #4 Jamar Howard (13.7 ppg, 5.9 rpg; All-Missouri Valley First-Team in 2004)
F #33 Rob Kampman (9.3 ppg, 5.3 rpg; Missouri Valley Academic Second Team in 2004)
C #45 Paul Miller (8.7 ppg, 5.7 rpg; 10 pts and 9 rebs vs. Creighton in regular season finale)
G #5 Randy Burns (12.7 ppg, 4.4 rpg; All-Missouri Valley Second-Team in 2004)
G #11 Fridge Holman (10.2 ppg, 3.4 rpg; All-Missouri Valley Honorable Mention in 2004)
FLORIDA STATE VS. WICHITA STATE — A SERIES HISTORY
The Series: First Meeting
The Series In NIT: First Meeting
Last Game: First Meeting
Last Florida State Win: First Meeting
Last Wichita State Win: First Meeting
Last Wichita State Win In NIT: First Meeting
Last Wichita State Win In NIT: First Meeting
Florida State vs. Wichita State, Current Streak: First Meeting
Leonard Hamilton vs. Wichita State: First Meeting