#2 Cal State Northridge vs #1 Long Beach State

Jan. 16, 2009

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Game Gossip ...
The plot line is very simple ... The two top teams during the early portion of the 2009 Big West Conference season, second place Cal State Northridge and first place Long Beach State, meet on the 49ers home court (The Walter Pyramid) in what promises to be a highly entertaining conference game on Saturday, January 17, at 4:05 p.m. ... Among other plot lines, the game features two of the better shooting teams in the league ... Long Beach State is second in the conference in field goal percentage (.456) while Cal State Northridge is shooting .454 ... In two of the last four games, the Matadors have shot 52 percent or better including a .596 shooting effort at Cal State Fullerton (12/29/08) in the league opener ... The Matadors have also won two straight league road games while Long Beach State is 6-1 at home.

Matador Memo ...
Cal State Northridge continues to lead the Big West Conference in rebounding (37.3 rpg), field goal percentage defense (.417), 3-point field goal percentage defense (.326) and steals (8.57 spg) ... The Matadors are second in the league in scoring offense (73.9 ppg), free throw percentage (.729) and assists (14.86 apg).

49er Forecast ...
Long Beach State, picked to finish eighth in the Big West Coaches poll, is playing excellent basketball and leads the conference with a 4-0 record ... The 49ers are 9-7 overall, and 6-1 on their home court, The Walter Pyramid ... The 49ers have won four games in a row ... Donovan Morris, an All-American candidate who has won three Big West Player of the Week honors in 2008-09, leads the 49er attack at 16.7 ppg (#2 in the Big West) ... Morris only needs 87 points to become the 17th player in LBS history to score at least 1,000 points ... Morris is second in the conference in free throw percentage (.863).

Series Saga ...
Cal State Northridge has won two straight games over Long Beach State, and three of the last four meetings ... However, the 49ers still lead the series, 25-19 ... The Matadors have enjoyed pretty good success on LBS' home court ... The Matadors are 6-2 at The Walter Pyramid including a 82-78 victory last year ... Tremaine Townsend collected 18 points and 14 rebounds in the CSUN win ... Donovan Morris tallied a game-high 23 points for Long Beach State.

Fast Facts ...
Rob Haynes (6-4, 185, Senior, Guard, Cerritos, Ca) has quietly put together an excellent season in 2008-09 ... Haynes has scored in double-digits in ten of the 14 games including a career-high 18 points (6-for-8 from the floor, 4-for-6 from behind the arc) at Cal State Fullerton (12/29/08) and another 18 points against UC Davis (1/5/09) ... Haynes, a team captain, is shooting .476 (30-for-63) from behind the arc this season, tops on the team and fifth-best in the Big West Conference ... In the last eight games, has hit 50 percent or better in each game (.581, 36-for-62 in the eight games) ... In his last six games, Haynes has hit 19-of-31 shots from behind the arc for .613 ... Haynes has made at least one 3-pointer in 13 straight games ... Willie Galick (6-8, 225, RS Junior, Forward, Nanaimo, British Columbia) is putting together excellent numbers in 2008-09 ... Galick, the only Matador player to start all 14 games, is second in the Big West in field goal percentage (.596, 56-for-94) ... Galick has collected three double-doubles (points-rebounds) ... That included career-highs in points (17) and rebounds (13) at Cal State Fullerton (12/29/08) ... Galick is averaging 6.0 rebounds per game (#8 in the Big West) ... The 48 career blocks by Tremaine Townsend (6-9, 225, Senior, Center, Phoenix, Az) has moved him into a fifth place tie in the CSUN record book with Tom Samson (1993-97) ... In the last three games, Josh Jenkins (5-10l 185, Senior, Albuquerque, NM) has dished out 29 assists with only six turnovers.

Northridge Notes ...
With Deon Tresvant (6-0, 170, Senior, Guard, Long Beach, Ca) indefinitely away from the team tending to legal matters, Tremaine Townsend (6-9, 225, Senior, Forward, Phoenix, Az) has taken over the scoring lead among active players at 12.5 ppg (#8 in the BWC) ... Townsend posted career-highs in points (25) and field goals (11) in a recent game against UC Davis (1/5/09) ... Townsend stands on top in rebounds at 7.5 per game (#2 in the BWC) ... Townsend is shooting .507 (68-for-134) from the floor, #5 in the Big West ... Willie Galick (6-8, 225, RS Junior, Nanaimo, BC) checks in at 10.6 ppg and second in rebounding (6.0 rpg, #8 in the BWC) ... Galick is the only player on the Matador roster to start all 14 games ... Josh Jenkins (5-10, 185, Senior, Albuquerque, NM) is #1 in the Big West in assists (95, 6.79 apg) and #4 in steals (22, 1.57 spg).

Coaches Corner ...
Bobby Braswell, the 2007-08 Big West Coach of the Year, is in his 13th season as head coach of the Cal State Northridge Matadors ... Braswell has coached 369 games in his duties as head coach, and has produced a record of 194-175 (.526) ... Braswell has guided Cal State Northridge to post-season play in each of his 12 seasons, reaching the conference tournament championship game on four occasions ... In past seasons under Braswell, the Matadors have prided themselves on tough defense and a productive offense ... Last year, the Matadors forced the opponents into 557 turnovers, produced 274 steals (#1 in the Big West, #15 in the nation), and outrebounded the opposition, 1,113-1,092 ... Braswell's teams have been ranked in the Top 25 in steals nationally in eleven of the last 12 seasons.

Pre-Season Predictions ...
Cal State Northridge is the choice of the Big West coaches and media, and five national pre-season magazines to win the Big West title ... The Matadors received eight first place votes and 64 points from the conference coaches ... UC Santa Barbara received the other first place vote and a total of 56 points ... Pacific was picked to finish third (48 points ) followed by Cal State Fullerton (42 points), UC Davis (28 points), Cal Poly and UC Irvine with 23 points apiece, Long Beach State (21 points) and UC Riverside (19 points) ... The Big West media poll has the Matadors atop the pre-season league standings with 173 points (14 first place votes) followed by UCSB (156 points, three first-place votes), Pacific (107 points, three first place votes), Cal State Fullerton (107 points, one first place vote), Long Beach State (96 points), UC Irvine (73 points), UC Davis (65 points), Cal Poly (54 points) and UC Riverside (49 points) ... The Sporting News, Blue Ribbon College Basketball Yearbook, Lindy's College Basketball Magazine, Athlon Sports College Basketball Magazine and Basketball Times have all picked the Matadors win the Big West title in 2008-09 ... Tremaine Townsend (6-9, 225, Senior, Forward, Phoenix, Az) and Deon Tresvant (6-0, 170, Senior, Guard, Long Beach, Ca) were named to the pre-season Big West All-Conference team.

Pre-Season Potpourri ...
In its pre-season college basketball issue, Sports Illustrated has predicted a berth in the NCAA Tournament for the Matadors ... This recognition is just the latest in a series of lofty predictions for the 2007-08 Big West regular season tri-champions ... Cal State Northridge was ranked 25th in the CollegeInsider.com Mid-Major Top 25 pre-season poll ... The Matadors generated 118 points, and was only one of four teams from the West to be ranked in the Top 25 among mid-major teams ... The other west teams were Gonzaga (#1, 754 points), St. Mary's (#3, 616 points), and San Diego (#8, 481 points) ... For the first time in school history, the Matadors received a vote in the pre-season Associated Press men's basketball poll ... Cal State Northridge was the only school from the Big West Conference to receive a vote in the Associated Press pre-season poll.

Schedule Story ...
The recently completed six game non-league road trek was the longest since the 1993-94 season when the Matadors packed their suitcases for a seven game journey to UC Irvine, St. Mary's, Colorado, NE Illinois, Notre Dame, Sac. St. and Cal ... CSUN traveled to Stanford (85-103, 11/18/08), Cal State Bakersfield (65-67, 11/21/08), New Mexico (74-85, 11/24/08), Rider (72-85, 11/29/08), Drexel (47-55, 12/1/08) and to UCLA (67-85, 12/7/08) ... The six game road trip covered more than 4,000 miles.

Team Talk ...
Tremaine Townsend (6-9, 225, Senior, Forward, Phoenix, Az), Deon Tresvant (6-0, 170, Senior, Guard, Long Beach, Ca), Josh Jenkins (5-10, 185, Senior, Guard, Albuquerque, NM) and Rob Haynes (6-4, 185, Senior, Guard, Cerritos, Ca) lead a chorus of eight talented letter winners plus the influx of four new recruits and four redshirts in 2008-09 ... Townsend led the Big West in rebounding (9.8 rpg) and blocked shots (1.3 bpg) while Jenkins led the conference in assists (191, 6.4 apg) ... Tresvant led the team in scoring (13.9 ppg) despite the fact he didn't start one game last year ... Haynes is a three-year starter who provides offensive firepower from behind the three-point line ... There is plenty of veteran experience from such players as Rodrigue Mels (6-3, 180, Senior, Guard, Les Abymes, Guadeloupe), Tony Osunsanmi (6-4, 190, Junior, Forward, Ontario, Ca), Therin Taylor (6-6, 185, Junior, Forward, Richmond, Ca) and Michael Lizarraga (6-7, 230, Sophomore, Forward, Dixon, Ca.) ... Four redshirts are expected to play a lot of minutes this year ... This quartet includes Willie Galick (6-8, 225, RS Junior, Forward, Nanaimo, B.C.), Jermaine Smith (6-9, 230, RS Junior, Center, Irvington, NJ), Mark Hill (5-11, 175, Junior, Guard, Los Angeles, Ca) and Matthew Wallace (6-2, 170, RS Freshman, Junior, Los Angeles, Ca) ... The list of new players includes Vincent Cordell (6-6, 210, Junior, Forward, Huntsville, Al), Xavier Crawford (7-0, 220, Junior, Center, Richfield, Mn), Kenny Daniels (6-4, 210, Junior, Forward/Guard, St. Louis, Mo) and Dallas Rutherford (6-2, 175, Freshman, Guard, Northridge, Ca) ... Last year in chalking up a 20-10 record, CSUN led the BWC in holding the opposition to only .419 shooting, .307 in 3-point field goal percentage defense, steals (274), rebounding (37.1 rpg) and blocked shots (3.23 bpg) ... CSUN returns four of its top six scorers from a year ago.

Graduated Gossip ...
All four seniors on last year's 20-10 Matador team are doing just fine ... Calvin Chitwood is playing professional basketball in Japan, while Jayme Miller is playing professionally in Holland, while Jonathan Heard is playing professionally in Finland ... Rai Colston is an assistant basketball coach at Chaminade High School in Woodland Hills ... Chitwood is playing for Niigata Albirex BB ... Chitwood, a four-year starter, ended his CSUN career as the school's #10 all-time leading scorer (1,170 points) ... Heard, who ended his four-year Matador career as the school's #3 all-time leading scorer (1,362 points) and #9 all-time rebounder (534), is playing for Team LoKoKo in Finland ... Miller, who started all 30 games in 2007-08, and provided strength and leadership during his senior season, is playing for Aris Friesland (Holland) in the Dutch Professional League ... During their tenure at Cal State Northridge, Chitwood, Heard, Miller and Colston combined to play 350 games, score 3,065 points, and grab 1,311 rebounds.

Television Time ...
Last year, Cal State Northridge was on television a school record eight times ... That included games on ESPNU and Fox Sports Prime Ticket ... This year's schedule finds the Matadors on television six times ... That includes four games on Fox Sports Prime Ticket (Dec. 7 at UCLA, Jan. 31 at Cal Poly, Feb. 14 vs UC Riverside, Feb. 28 vs Long Beach State), and two games on ESPNU (Jan. 29 at UC Santa Barbara, Feb. 18 at UC Irvine) ... For the fourth straight season, the Matadors have partnered with CSTV and the Big West Conference to present live video streaming of all league games and non-conference home contests ... Click on the Big West TV banner on the front page of www.gomatadors.com for more information.