Mike Bibby jersey

Mike Bibby was passed up in passing. Photo by Wildcat Universe

The 2013-’14 Arizona Basketball season was one for the record books.

Yes, the team fell short of its tournament goal and, yes, the Elite Eight is one of the worst rounds in which to lose, but it was still a really good season for the Wildcats and the record book shows it.

The very best records are win records and this year’s UA hoops did plenty of winning. For almost three months the Cats did nothing but winning. The 21-0 mark ended up being the best start in school history:

Most Wins to Start Season

RankSeasonCoachStartedFinished
12013-14Sean Miller21-033-5
21931-32Fred A. Enke16-018-2
32012-13Sean Miller14-027-8
41987-88Lute Olson12-035-3
5t1914-15Pop McKale9-09-0
5t1921-22James Pierce9-010-2

Once Arizona got to 17-0 the attention turned to the longest UA win streaks of all time. The 2014 Wildcats set the modern record but the guy whose name is on the arena still lays claim to the best run ever:

Longest Winning Streak

RankSeason(s)Coach(es)Win Streak
11913-14 - 1916-17Pop McKale / Raymond Quigley22
22013-14Sean Miller21
3t1992-93Lute Olson19
3t1997-98Lute Olson19
5t1919-20 - 1921-22Pop McKale / James Pierce18
5t1930-31 - 1931-32Fred A. Enke18
71928-29Fred A. Enke17
81987-88Lute Olson15
9t1946-47Fred A. Enke14
9t2012-13Sean Miller14

When you’re setting win streak records chances are you’re going to challenge total wins records and this year’s squad did just that, posting the second most wins in Arizona history:

Most Wins in a Season

RankSeasonCoachWinsLosses%
11987-88Lute Olson3530.921
22014-15Sean Miller3440.895
32013-14Sean Miller3350.868
4t1997-98Lute Olson3050.857
4t2004-05Lute Olson3070.811
4t2010-11Sean Miller3080.789
7t1988-89Lute Olson2940.879
7t1993-94Lute Olson2960.829
9t1990-91Lute Olson2870.800
9t2000-01Lute Olson2880.778
9t2002-03Lute Olson2840.875

The result was the Cats’ 26th regular season conference championship.

A big reason for the excitement leading up to this season was the return of a pass-first point guard to Tucson. T.J. McConnell did not disappoint as a playmaker and ended up with the 6th highest single-season assist total in UA history:

Most Assists in a Season

RankPlayerAssistsGamesAvgSeason
1Russell Brown247279.11979
2T.J. McConnell238386.32015
3Reggie Geary231337.01996
4Damon Stoudamire220307.31995
5Mustafa Shakur215316.92007
6Damon Stoudamire208355.91994
7T.J. McConnell202385.32014
8Russell Brown200277.41980
9Mike Bibby199355.71998
10Russell Brown197267.61978
11Luke Walton194316.32002
12Matt Othick182355.21991

With a deeper team and, hopefully, more offensive firepower around him, McConnell has a great shot at posting an even bigger assist number next year. Just for fun, if the Wildcats play 40 games in 2014-’15 T.J. would need to average 6.2 assists a game to break Russell Brown’s 36-year-old school record.

The other statistical standout this season was Aaron Gordon, who did his best work on the glass. When his eagerly-anticipated freshman season began the question was whether or not he could play small forward. The situation resolved itself when Brandon Ashley got hurt and Gordon moved inside permanently.

Gordon averaged 8.7 rebounds per game in March, punctuated by pulling down 16 boards against Wisconsin when every possession was crucial. The final tally resulted in one of the best ever seasons for a UA rebounder:

Most Rebounds in a Season

RankPlayerReboundsGamesAvgSeason
1Jordan Hill3753411.02009
2Leo Johnson3733012.41951
3tBill Reeves3432613.21956
3tAl Fleming3432911.81975
5Bob Elliott3413310.31976
6Al Fleming3293310.01976
7tJoe Skaisgir3142612.11962
7tDerrick Williams314388.32011
9Ben Davis313339.51996
10Aaron Gordon303388.02014
11Michael Wright297348.72000

The countdown to next season is underway (only 25 weeks until the season opener!). When the 2015 BasketCats take the floor everyone in Wildcat Universe will be hoping they can tie this school record:

Most National Championships in a Season

RankSeasonNational Championships
119971

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