The highly-ranked Wildcats look to protect their home court against an upstart UTEP squad led by Tim Floyd.
The Arizona Wildcats were a bit sloppy against Charlestown Southern in their season opener. With the UTEP Miners coming to town on Thursday night, the 'Cats will need a stronger performance to end any hopes their opponents have of pulling the upset.
Don't expect too much to change for UA this evening. The starting five will be the same, and coach Sean Miller will likely continue to play 10 players throughout. After hoisting up 32 threes over the weekend, look for Arizona to do a much better job of attacking the rim and getting the ball into the post.
The Miners were impressive in their season opener. They defeated Oral Roberts with a big run in the second half and surrendered just 49 points. John Bohannon, a 6'10 center, was UTEP's leading scorer with 17 points. It will be interesting to see how Bohannon and the rest of the Miners' frontline fares against Arizona's young-yet-talented frontcourt.
Perhaps the most interesting storyline to watch for is UTEP coach Tim Floyd's return to McKale Center. Floyd reportedly had an offer to become the next head coach of the Wildcats in 2009. He turned it down to return to USC, and very little has gone right for him since then due to a fallout with the NCAA.
Start Time: 10 p.m. ET, 8 p.m. in Tucson.
TV: FOX Sports Net will televise the game live across the country.
Radio: 1290-AM The Source
Final Prediction: UTEP has the talent to make a game of this, but in the end, Arizona is just too much to handle on the road. Look for the Wildcats' depth to gradually wear down the Miners as they go on to win 82-72.