January 24, 2008

Saturday, 4:05 p.m. - Cal State Northridge & Long Beach State Renew Heated Rivalry


Saturday, 4:05 p.m. - Cal State Northridge & Long Beach State Renew Heated Rivalry
This Week's Matador Men's Basketball Release



Game Gossip ...
Atop the Big West standings at 5-0 and 13-4 overall, Cal State Northridge returns to league play to host Long Beach State (4-12 overall, 1-4 Big West) on Saturday, January 26, at 4:05 p.m. at The Matadome ... The 5-0 conference start is CSUN's best league start since they moved to the Division I level in 1990-91, and overall ties the school record for best league start ... During the 1977-78 season, the Matadors started the conference season 5-0 ... CSUN is ranked 13th in the CollegeInsider.com Mid-Major poll (1/21/08) ... The Sagarin poll (1/25/08) finds CSUN ranked 78th in the nation, and 80th in the RPI poll (1/25/08) ... According to the ESPN Bracketology (1/21/08), if the NCAA Tournament was to start today, the Matadors would be a 14th seed and would play Wisconsin (#3 seed) at the Omaha Regional ... The 13-4 CSUN record is the team's best start since the 1981-82 campaign when CSUN went 15-2.

Television Time ...
The Cal State Northridge-Long Beach State game will be televised on Fox Sports Prime Ticket with Paul Sunderlund and Michael Cage providing the broadcast chores.

Series Story ...
Long Beach State holds a 25-17 lead over Cal State Northridge ... The 49ers have won three of the last four games, but last year at The Matadome, Jonathan Heard scored 24 points to lead the Matadors to a 90-83 victory ... Rai Colston scored a career-high eleven points along with three steals in 18 minutes off the bench ... CSUN has won four of the last five games vs Long Beach State at The Matadome.

Coaches Corner ...
Bobby Braswell is in his 12th season as head coach at Cal State Northridge ... Braswell has coached 342 games in his duties as head coach, and has produced a record of 181-161 (.529) ... Braswell has guided Cal State Northridge to postseason play in each of his previous eleven 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 led the Big West Conference in rebounding margin (+6.9) and steals (8.97) ... Already this year, the Matadors have forced the opponents in 344 turnovers, produced 165 steals (#1 in the Big West), and have outrebounded the opposition, 645-626 ... Braswell's teams have been ranked in the Top 25 in steals nationally in ten of the last eleven seasons ... Braswell is assisted by second year assistant coach Louis Wilson, and newcomers Stan Johnson and James Blake ... Ryan Dodd is in his first season as Director of Basketball Operations.

League Leaders ...
Cal State Northridge and several players are among the leaders in the Big West Conference ... The Matadors are #1 in field goal percentage defense (.421), scoring margin (+8.6), rebounding (37.9 rpg), offensive rebounds (12.5), defensive rebounds (25.4), blocked shots (3.8 bpg), assists (15.5 apg) and steals (9.7 spg), and #2 in scoring (79.0 ppg), and 3-point field goal percentage defense (.316) ... Tremaine Townsend, senior all-conference candidates Calvin Chitwood and Jonathan Heard are 1-6-10 in the Big West in rebounding (8.4 rpg, 6.0 rpg, 5.8 rpg) ... Townsend is #1 in defensive rebounds (6.3 drpg) while Heard is second in offensive rebounds (2.4 oprg) ... Townsend, Chitwood, and Heard are 2-4-7 in field goal percentage (.544, .515, .484) in the league ... Chitwood maintains his league lead in blocked shots (1.7 bpg) while Townsend is fifth (1.1 bpg) .. Chitwood is trying to become the first CSUN player to lead the Big West in blocked shots ... Josh Jenkins continues to lead the conference in assists (6.3 apg), third in assist/turnover ratio (1.60) and seventh in steals (1.5 spg) ... Jenkins is trying to become the first CSUN player to lead the conference in assists since Markus Carr during the 2001-02 season (5.3 apg) ... Paul Wayne is tenth in steals (1.4 spg) ... Chitwood is eighth in free throw percentage (.810) and 14th in scoring (11.9 ppg) ... Heard is tenth in rebounding (5.8 rpg), and 15th in scoring (11.7 ppg) ... Deon Tresvant is second in three-point goals per game (2.9), tenth in 3-point field goal percentage (.431) and 12th in scoring (13.2 ppg).

Scoring Story ...
Three players are averaging in double figures, a fourth player is averaging 9.9 ppg, three players are shooting .515 or better, two players are shooting 43 percent or better from three-point territory, and two players are shooting 80 percent or better from the free throw line.

Defensive Data ...
Cal State Northridge has showed signs of an improved defense in 2007-08 ... The Matadors have held the opposition to only .421 percent shooting (#1 in the Big West) and has forced the opposition into 344 turnovers in 17 games ... Cal State Northridge has collected 165 steals (#1 in the Big West) in the 17 games ... In only three games this year has the opposition shot 50 percent or better ... In only three games has the opposition hit 40 percent or better from three-point territory.

Rebounding Raves ...
Rebounding has vastly improved for Cal State Northridge in the last three seasons ... During the 2005-06 campaign, CSUN ranked last in the Big West, but improved to second-best last year, and are currently first in the Big West averaging 37.9 rebounds per game compared to 36.8 rpg for the opposition ... The Matadors are trying to break the four year stranglehold on the rebound title held by Cal State Fullerton ... The 50 rebounds at Pepperdine (11/17/07) is a Big West best this year ... Four CSUN players are averaging 4.2 or more rebounds per game, including a conference-leading 8.4 rebounds per game by junior center Tremaine Townsend ... Senior all-conference candidates Calvin Chitwood and Jonathan Heard are sixth and tenth (6.0 rpg, 5.8 rpg)) in rebounding, respectively ... Chitwood's 18 rebounds against Chicago State (11/10/07) is a Big West best in 2007-08 ... In fact, Chitwood's 18 rebounds, and Tremaine Townsend's 15 rebounds at Cleveland State (11/28/07) and 14 vs Utah Valley State (12/5/07) are the three best rebounding efforts in the Big West this year .. Townsend is trying to become the first player in school history to lead the league in rebounding.

Broadcast Barometer ...
All Matador men's basketball games can be heard live over the internet at GoMatadors.com with Bill Courtland and Alan Zinsmeister providing the broadcasting duties ... For the third-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 GoMatadors.com for more information.

History Hoopla ...
The 2007-08 season marks the 50th season of intercollegiate basketball at Cal State Northridge ... During the previous 49 years, Cal State Northridge has produced several great teams, and numerous great players ... A history of many of the great moments in CSUN baskeball history is availiable on the Northridge website at www.gomatadors.com

Matador Memo ...
Cal State Northridge has shown an ability to fight back from behind in several games to win ... Four of CSUN's 13 wins have been comeback affairs after being down by eight points or more ... At UC Santa Barbara (1/5/08), the Matadors battled back from a 13-point second half deficit to win, 88-84 ... At UC Riverside (1/16/08), the Matadors were down by ten points in the first half, only to comeback to score a four-point win, 66-62 ... At Utah Valley State (12/28/07), CSUN scored a 73-65 win after being down by nine points ... At at Cleveland State (11/28/07), the Matadors were facing an eight-point deficit but came back to score a 78-68 victory ... All four of those wins were on the road.

Depth Dialogue ...
There is no doubt the team's talented depth has contributed to the fast start in 2007-08 ... Nine players are averaging 13.9 minutes or more ... Two reserve players, Tremaine Townsend and Deon Tresvant are averaging 25.8 and 24.4 minutes per game, respectively ... Tresvant is CSUN's leading scorer (13.2 ppg), Townsend is fourth in scoring (9.9 ppg) ... Townsend, is #1 the league in rebounding (8.4 rpg), #2 in fg pct (.544) and fifth in blocked shots (1.1 bpg) ... No reserve in school history has ever led the team in scoring or in rebounding ... That could happen this year with Tresvant and Townsend ... The last reserve to average in double figures was Gerald Rhoden during the 1996-97 season when he aveaged 11.4 ppg.

Team Talk ...
In five games, the Matadors have scored 92 points or more ... The 40 field goals vs Vanguard is a Big West best in (2007-08). ... The 35 point victory (82-47) over UC Davis (1/10/08) was the third largest margin of victory over a Big West school in the 46-year history of The Matadome.

Footnote Facts ...
The two road conference victories at Cal Poly (1/3/08) and at UCSB (1/5/08) hasn't happened since the 2000-01 season, the same year the Matadors went to the NCAA Tournament ... CSUN has notched eight of its eleven wins by double-digit margins ... In 2006-07, the Matadors played 31 games and had five wins by ten or more points ... The 12 assists by John Jenkins vs CS Bakersfield (11/21/07) is a Big West best in 2007-08. ... Calvin Chitwood's 18 rebounds against Chicago State (11/10/07) is a Big West best in 2007-08 ... Chitwood's six blocks at Washington (12/22/07) is a school record and a Big West season-best (2007-08).










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