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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Budinger seeks first win against Bruins

    UA forward Chase Budinger goes up for a shot against UCLAs Luc Richard Mbah a Moute and Kevin Love during a 68-66 Bruin win on March 2, 2008 in McKale Center. Budinger has yet to beat UCLA during his time at Arizona, but can change that when the Wildcats face the Bruins at 9 p.m. in Los Angeles.
    UA forward Chase Budinger goes up for a shot against UCLA’s Luc Richard Mbah a Moute and Kevin Love during a 68-66 Bruin win on March 2, 2008 in McKale Center. Budinger has yet to beat UCLA during his time at Arizona, but can change that when the Wildcats face the Bruins at 9 p.m. in Los Angeles.

    Chase Budinger has accomplished a lot statistically at this point in his career, but he’s far from satisfied.

    Sure, multiple MVP awards on the national and global stage heading into college, then a Pacific 10 Conference Freshman of the Year award is nice, especially when it’s built upon a résumé sufficient for a future NBA career.

    “”Since the day he hit this campus, he was supposed to be the next whatever,”” said UA interim head coach Russ Pennell.

    But something’s missing: Budinger has never beaten UCLA.

    “”I’m just using that as motivation,”” Budinger said. “”It’s a team I badly want to beat. I’m trying to use that as motivation to try to go in there and rally the team up and get them excited to go into Pauley and battle.””

    The UA men’s basketball team (11-5, 2-2 Pac-10) will take on the No. 9 Bruins (13-2, 3-0) tonight at 9 in Pauley Pavilion, giving juniors Nic Wise and Jordan Hill a chance at being on the winning end of a contest against UCLA for the first time, too.

    But maybe more importantly, it would be the Wildcats’ first true road win of the season in five tries.

    “”This could be a test for us,”” Budinger said. “”This could be the opening of the road trips and finally just starting to bring it together as a team.””

    But don’t get Budinger wrong. It’s a big game for Arizona for several reasons, but the team captain said the Wildcats are preparing to go into Los Angeles just like they’d prepare to play any other team. He cited his experience against the Bruins as an example to teach the younger players.

    “”I wouldn’t put this game on a pedestal or anything like that,”” Budinger said. “”I just try to tell young guys and exploit my knowledge and tell them what it feels like, what the atmosphere’s going to be like, how they’re going to play you.””

    Fogg to play on big stage

    Freshman Kyle Fogg has been taking Budinger’s words to heart. Despite having gone to high school in Brea, Calif. – Brea Olinda High is located on Wildcat Way, ironically enough – Fogg has never been to Pauley.

    Fogg is good friends, however, with UCLA freshman Jerime Anderson. In fact, it was Fogg’s play against Anderson in the AAU circuit this past summer that really helped the late college signee get noticed by UA coaches.

    “”He played a big part in helping to get me on the map,”” Fogg said.

    Even at that point in his career, Fogg said he didn’t realize he could play at the Division I level, let alone be a starter in the Pac-10.

    “”I was starting to realize I was getting better and better, like, every game I played,”” Fogg said. “”I was working hard every game I played with passing and shooting. I didn’t think I’d get to this high of a level.””

    Fogg is realizing 10 starts into his college career that his role on the team – mainly on the defensive end – isn’t so bad.

    “”It’s a lot more fun that high school. It’s a lot more competitive; you’ve got to come to play every night, or you’re just going to do terrible,”” Fogg said Monday. “”It’s crazy that I’m in the Pac-10 now from watching it senior year, being like one of the best conferences in the nation. It’s just crazy that I’m here now, starting for a big-name program.””

    Being from southern California, the freshman will get to strut his stuff in front of “”probably eight people that I know are coming for sure”” in Pauley Pavilion.

    Not that kind of music

    In an effort to get the first true road win of the season, Fogg said he’s going to mix up his pregame regimen.

    “”There’s got to be something different because I didn’t do very well on the road trip against Cal and Stanford. I’ll just change my routine up a little bit,”” he said.

    So what does that consist of? Extra shots in the gym or enhanced scouting?

    “”Just change the songs before the games,”” Fogg said with a laugh. “”That’s what I do if I have a bad game.””

    Fogg said he listens to rapper Lil’ Wayne and some techno.

    “”Whatever gets me pumped up,”” he said.

    If he really has an off-night, he’ll change the genre of music he listens to before the next game.

    But he certainly won’t be listening to his opponent’s jams – those recorded by USC freshman guard Percy Miller, who goes by the rap name Romeo.

    “”Oh, I don’t listen to so much of his music,”” Fogg said. “”I’m sure he’s a good artist, but no.””

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