CSUN Returns Home To Face Vanguard University
After playing six of its first eight games away from The Matadome, Cal State Northridge returns home for a Wednesday (12/5/12) encounter against Vanguard University ... Game time is slated for 7:30 p.m. ... At 5:00 p.m., the Matador women's basketball team hosts the University of San Francisco ... The CSUN (6-2) vs Vanguard (6-4) game will be broadcast live on gomatadors.com with Bill Courtland and Alan Zinsmeister handling the broadcast duties ... Live Stats and Twitter coverage will also be available at gomatadors.com ... Following the CSUN vs Vanguard game, the Matadors hit the road on Saturday (12/8/12) at Arizona State ... The Sun Devils are 6-1 ... This will be the second of three games Cal State Northridge will play against a Pac-12 opponent ... CSUN is ranked 24th in this week's CollegeInsider.com mid-major poll.
What a difference a year makes ... Last year, the Matadors employed 16 different lineups ... This year through eight games, Cal State Northridge has been consistent with the SAME starting lineup of Allan Guei (5-9, 160, Sophomore, Guard, Los Angeles, Ca), Josh Greene (6-0, 180, Junior, Guard, Los Angeles, Ca) and the front line of Stephan Hicks (6-6, 200, RS Sophomore, G/F, Thousand Oaks, Ca), Stephen Maxwell (6-7, 220, Sophomore, F/C, Woodland Hills, Ca) and Tre Hale-Edmerson (6-9, 215, Freshman, F/C, Sheridan, Or) ... Depth has been a strength for CSUN ... Nine players are averaging 14 minutes or more per game ... Five players are averaging 20 minutes or more per contest ... CSUN leads the Big West Conference in free throw percentage (.784) and offensive rebounding (14.88 per game) and is second in steals (9.63 spg).
As expected, Stephan Hicks (6-6, 200, RS Sophomore, G/F, Thousand Oaks, Ca) and Josh Greene (6-0, 180, Junior, Guard, Los Angeles, Ca) have been the team's top two players ... Both players are prominently mentioned in numerous Big West Conference statistical categories ... Hicks leads the Matadors in both scoring (17.5 ppg, #4 in the BWC) and rebounding (7.6 rpg, #3 in the BWC) ... You will also find Hicks' name among the statistical leaders in field goal percentage (.511, #8 in the BWC), free throw percentage (.854, #6 in the BWC), steals (1.75 spg, #6 in the BWC), offensive rebounds (2.88 rpg, #6 in the BWC) and defensive rebounds (4.75 rpg, #7 in the BWC) ... Hicks has already established career-bests in field goals (9), steals (7), assists (3), and blocks (1) this year ... Hicks has scored in double figures in all eight games this year, including season-highs (25 points) at San Diego (11/15/12) and at Brigham Young (11/24/12) ... Greene has hit .935 (43-for-46, #2 in the Big West Conference) from the free throw line, and is among the league's top statistical leaders in assists (4.75 apg, #3 in the BWC), steals (1.88 spg, #3 in the BWC), and assist/turnover ratio (1.9, #2 in the BWC).
Two Matador players (Allan Guei, Ilya Ilyayev) speak foreign languages ... Guei was born in Italy, but spent his early childhood in the Ivory Coast where he learned and spoke French ... Guei moved to the United States at age nine where he had to learn a second language, English ... Ilyayev was born in Moscow, Russia ... Ilyayev speaks fluent Russian.
Only eight games into the 2012-13 season, and already the Matador record book has undergone change ... Josh Greene (6-0, 180, Junior, Guard, Los Angeles, Ca) has hit 31 straight free throws over the last six games, one short of the school record set by Markus Carr during the 2000-01 season ... Greene's 14-for-14 free throw effort in the 92-76 victory over Tulsa (11/17/12) was second-best for a single game in school history ... Greene dished out 13 assists against Eastern Washington (11/12/12), a career-best and sixth-best for a single game in school history ... Stephan Hicks (6-6, 200, RS Sophomore, G/F, Thousand Oaks, Ca) also added his name to the CSUN record book with a 9-for-10 shooting effort at San Diego (11/15/12) ... That stat proved to be the third-best effort in Matador history for a single game ... Hicks produced a career-best seven steals at San Diego (11/15/12), fifth-best for a single contest in CSUN history.
Free Throw Facts
Last season, Cal State Northridge led the Big West Conference in free throw percentage (.755, school record) ... This year, the trend continues ... The Matadors have hit .784 (156-for-199) from the charity stripe in the first eight games, including 25-of-27 (.952) against Pepperdine (11/9/12) in the season opener, seventh-best for a single game in school history ... The Matadors are ranked eleventh in the nation in free throw percentage ... CSUN has made 38 more free throws than the second-best (free throws) team in the league, UC Irvine ... CSUN has made 156 free throws compared to 118 for UCI ... CSUN also has 42 more free throw attempts than UC Irvine, 199-to-157 ... CSUN's starting five has hit 125-of-150 free throws for .833 ... Josh Greene (6-0, 180, Junior, Guard, Los Angeles, Ca) is the CSUN free throw leader at .935 (43-for-46, #2 in the BWC) ... Greene's career free throw percentage (.854, 164-for-192), is fourth-best in school history ... Greene has hit 31 straight free throws, only one short of the school record set in 2000-01 by Markus Carr.
Which NCAA Division I basketball team is the youngest in the country? ... Look no further than Cal State Northridge ... In a nationwide survey conducted by the Naval Academy media relations office, in terms of playing experience, the Matadors have 17 active players with only eleven years of collegiate basketball experience, an average of 0.65 years per player ... Three of the nation's least experienced teams hail from the Big West Conference ... Following the average of 0.65 years per player by Cal State Northridge, Dartmouth is second nationally at 0.73 years per year, followed by Navy (0.76 years), UC Santa Barbara (0.78 years) and UC Riverside (0.79 years) ... Their are NO seniors on the 17-man Cal State Northridge active roster ... Their are ONLY three juniors ... The rest of the Matador squad is either freshmen (seven) or sophomores (seven).
Vanguard University, located in Costa Mesa (Ca), has chalked up a 6-4 overall record this year ... Preston Wynne (6-2, 175, Junior, Guard, Wellpinit, Wa) leads the team in scoring at 19.4 ppg ... Three other players average in double figures led by Ennis Whatley Jr. (6-5, 215, Senior, Forward, Columbia, Md) at 18.3 ppg, Chris Gorman (5-11, 170, Sophomore, Guard, Oceanside, Ca) at 14.3 ppg, and Taylor Kelly (6-3, 195, Senior, Guard, Bakersfield, Ca) at 10.3 ppg ... Whatley leads Vanguard in rebounding (9.0 rpg) ... The Lions are members of the Golden State Athletic Conference (GSAC).
Cal State Northridge leads the series with Vanguard, 7-1 ... The Matadors have won the last six meetings including their last encounter, a 109-66 decision, on November 20, 2010, at The Matadome.
The 55th season of Cal State Northridge basketball promises to be just as competitive and exciting as the previous 54 years ... Three Pac-12 Conference teams (UCLA, Arizona State, Utah), a game at Brigham Young (BYU), and the addition of Hawai'i to the Big West Conference calendar are just a few of the highly competitive games that are on the 2012-13 docket ... Thirteen home games will be played at The Matadome ... Nine of those 13 home games will be Big West Conference games includings contests against defending league champion Long Beach State (Feb. 9, 7:05 pm) and Hawai'i (March 7, 7:30 pm) ... The CSUN-UCLA game will be played at the new renovated Pauley Pavilion on Nov. 28 ... The Big West Tournament is slated for March 14-16 at the Honda Center in Anaheim.
Cal State Northridge has been picked to finish eighth in the annual Big West Conference pre-season media poll ... The Matadors generated 83 points ... Long Beach State, the defending league regular season and league tournament champion, earned 13 first place votes and 194 points to emerge as the league favorite in 2012-13 ... The 49ers outdistanced Cal State Fullerton, which accumulated 164 points, and third place UC Irvine's 153 points ... The 21-member media panel tabbed Big West member Hawai'i for fourth place with 132 points followed by UC Santa Barbara in fifth place (129 points) ... Pacific was picked for sixth place (113 points) followed by Cal Poly (100 points), Cal State Northridge (83 points), UC Davis (44 points) and UC Riverside (43 points) ... CSUN's Stephan Hicks (6-6, 200, RS Sophomore, F/G, Thousand Oaks, Ca), who gained Big West Freshman of the Year honors in 2011-12 with a 15.1 points and 7.1 rebounds per game average, has been named to the pre-season media all-conference team ... Also named to the pre-season team were James Ennis (Long Beach State), Vander Joaquim (Hawai'i), D.J. Seeley (Cal State Fullerton), Kwame Vaughn (Cal State Fullerton) and Michael Wilder (UC Irvine).
The Big West Conference and the Honda Center have announced that all-session tickets for the 2013 Big West Men's and Women's Basketball Tournament are now on sale in conjunction with the official start of the college basketball season ... The 2013 Big West Tournament will be third year the event has been hosted by the Honda Center in Anaheim ... The 2012 tournament saw a 23 percent increase in attendance from the previous year ... The Big West Tournament is the oldest NCAA Division I post-season basketball tournament in the West, dating back to 1976 when the conference was known as the Pacific Coast Athletic Association ... The Big West is comprised of ten schools: Cal State Northridge, Cal Poly, Cal State Fullerton, Long Beach State, UC Davis, UC Irvine, UC Riverside, UC Santa Barbara, Hawai'i and Pacific ... Additional ticket information for the 2013 Big West Tournament is available at hondacenter.com.
Cal State Northridge has played 1,485 games since the start of the basketball program in 1958-59 ... There will be three doubleheader games along with the Matador women's basketball team this year ... The dates are Nov. 9, Dec. 5 and March 7 ... On Nov. 9, the Matador women played Portland followed by the men's game against Pepperdine ... On Dec. 5, the CSUN women will play USF at 5:00 pm followed by a 7:00 pm men's contest against Vanguard ... Then on Mar. 7, the Matador women play Cal State Fullerton at 5:00 pm followed by a 7:00 pm contest for the men's team against Hawai'i ... The Cal State Northridge women's basketball team is the pre-season favorite to win the Big West Conference title ... Since the 1962-63 season, Cal State Northridge has played 602 home games at The Matadome with a winning percentage of .655 ... In 50 seasons on CSUN's home court, the Matadors have produced 41 winning seasons, five .500 seasons and only four losing seasons ... Entering the 2012-13 season, 407 players have worn the Red, Black & White of Cal State Northridge ... Thirty-one states have been represented in years past on the Matador roster.