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UCLA REPORT

Collison suffers ankle sprain

March 14, 2007|Diane Pucin | Times Staff Writer

UCLA point guard Darren Collison suffered a sprained ankle near the end of practice Tuesday but is listed as probable for Thursday's game with Weber State in the first round of the NCAA tournament, a school spokesman said.

Collison, a 6-foot-1 sophomore, leads the Bruins in assists (6.0) and steals (2.3) per game and averages 12.6 points. He earned first-team All-Pacific 10 Conference honors.

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Michael Roll is supposed to be UCLA's three-point shooting star. He is supposed to come off the bench and loosen up a zone defense or provide instant oomph by making a long-range shot.

But Roll's three-point accuracy has dropped from 38% last season to 34% in his sophomore season. And that percentage is falling. Over the last six games, Roll has made only four of 12 three-point shots -- and he is 0 for 3 in UCLA's last three games, two of them losses.

Keith Barnett, who coached Roll at Aliso Niguel High, said the player "was not expecting the last couple of games to turn out that way. I know Mike thinks he's a great shooter. But when you don't get a lot of attempts it's hard. If he hits his first three, his second, then he gets a rhythm and gets more attempts.

"He's been missing the first shot lately, and that's limited his attempts and then it's tough getting into a rhythm."

Roll, who was ready to sign with UC Santa Barbara before UCLA Coach Ben Howland offered him a scholarship, speaks little about himself.

"I'm fine," he said Sunday, the last day UCLA players or coaches were available to talk before Thursday's game. "I'm just doing what I can."

Barnett said he thinks Roll loses trust in his shot after a miss.

"If he misses that first one he's thinking, 'I don't get another chance for a couple or three minutes,' " Barnett said, "and then he spends those minutes thinking about the miss."

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If fans voted on which UCLA player has taken the most charges, the winner would probably be center Lorenzo Mata. That would be wrong. Guard Arron Afflalo has taken 17 charges and Mata 16.

As for other statistics the team keeps but that don't show up on the official books: Mata leads the Bruins in dives for loose balls, with 23. Luc Richard Mbah a Moute is second with 22.

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diane.pucin@latimes.com

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