Dec. 20, 2008
The Week Ahead ...
Cal State Northridge student-athletes bring Christmas cheer during the holiday season ... Bob Vazquez, Assistant Athletic Director for Media Relations, offers his weekly insights on the accomplishments of the teams, coaches, and student-athletes who compete for Cal State Northridge.
Christmas Cheer ...
Talk about a heart of a champion ... Every year, several Cal State Northridge student-athletes (who are members of SAAC - Student Athlete Advisory Council), participate in a "adopt a family" program during the holiday season ... It has been a hugely successful endeavor in past years, and this year was no exception ... Thanks to the generosity of the student-athletes and the leadership of SAAC, more than $800 was raised for a local family of six (4 kids ranging in age from 18 months to eleven, plus mom and dad) who are living in a 3-bedroom apartment with two other families ... There was even enough money for a gift certificate for food ... SAAC has worked closely with MEND (Meeting Every Need With Dignity) to provide holiday cheer during these tough economic times ... More than 37 presents were wrapped by CSUN student-athletes and delivered to the family ... Their expression of happiness and joy was priceless ... Congratulations to the student-athletes who are members of SAAC for another job well done.
Holiday Hoops ...
Remember that old phrase, "If it's free, then it's for me" ... If you bring canned food or a toy to Monday night's women's basketball game between Cal State Northridge and Eastern Washington at The Matadome (tipoff is 5:00 p.m.), you will be admitted FREE to the game ... The donations will benefit those affected by the recent Sylmar fires ... And because the Matador athletic department is in the holiday mood, admission will be FREE to the Matador women's game on Dec. 28 against Columbia ... Tipoff is 2:00 p.m.
Lizarraga's Ledger ...
Michael Lizarraga loves sports ... As a senior in high school, Lizarraga was a star on the basketball team, played football (tight end, wide receiver, quarterback) and was a key member of the baseball team as a pitcher, first baseman and outfielder ... What is incredible is that Lizarraga, a sophomore on the Cal State Northridge basketball team, is totally deaf ... Lizarraga is the only deaf player competing in basketball on the NCAA Division I level ... Despite not being able to hear the roar of the crowd or the coach instructing the team, Lizarraga has become a valuable member of the Matadors ... Lizarraga has played in five games, and is hitting an amazing .833 (5-for-6) from the floor ... In a recent game against Denver (a 80-53 victory), Lizarraga grabbed a career-high five rebounds in eight minutes of play ... Lizarraga graduated from the California School for the Deaf in northern California and enrolled at Cal State Northridge last year because of the nationally renowned deaf studies program ... Lizarraga, who requires an interpreter during practice and during games, played in seven games last year, and has already contributed more this year as a reserve forward ... "Michael worked hard during the summer and has improved tremendously and is stronger," said head coach Bobby Braswell ... "Michael is big and strong around the basket, can score on the inside, and is a solid defender. He has an excellent chance to have a great career at Cal State Northridge." ... Lizarraga, who is a Recreation, Tourism and Management major, says the best thing about being a student-athlete is keeping in shape, but the toughest part is the time commitment ... Lizarraga says his favorite NBA player is LeBron James of the Cleveland Cavaliers, and the person in history he would most liked to have met would have been Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Athletic events THIS WEEK at Cal State Northridge
Monday, December 22
men's Basketball at San Diego State, 5:00 p.m.
women's basketball vs eastern washington, 7:00 p.m.
Sunday, December 28
Women's Basketball vs Columbia, The Matador, 2:00 p.m.