By Bob Vazquez, Assistant Athletic Director, Strategic Communications
Los Angeles, Calif. – For many years, head basketball coaches from San Diego to San Luis Obispo have gathered at the prestigious College Tip-Off Luncheon at the Los Angeles Athletic Club to give their pre-season insights and discuss their program highlights.
Wednesday (Sept. 25) was no exception as a luncheon crowd of more than 200 people filled the banquet room at the LAAC to listen to ten Division I head coaches reveal their game plan for the 2013-14 season including new coaches from Cal State Northridge (Reggie Theus), UCLA, USC, Cal State Fullerton and UC Riverside.
College basketball is just around the corner. March Madness can't get here soon enough.
"We were a young and undersized basketball team last year," said Theus, who says he will bring in taller players who will be able to compete against CSUN opponents who have been bigger and stronger around the basket.
Basketball practice for the Cal State Northridge men's basketball team will begin on Friday afternoon (Sept. 27) at the Matadome. Fourteen players including eight newcomers will don a Matador uniform for a basketball program that will be entering its 56th season.
One of the attendees at the luncheon was Dave Yanani, a legendary coach in the Los Angeles area who not only enjoyed success on the high school level, but also coached collegiately at Cal State Dominguez Hills and at Cal State Los Angeles. Yanani hired Theus as a volunteer assistant coach at CSLA in the early 2000's that helped kickoff Theus' coaching career. At the time, Theus was working as a television analyst.
"Reggie brought a world of basketball talent and experience to the job at CSLA," said Yanani, who also coached against Theus when Yanani coached at Fremont High School and Theus was emerging as a star basketball player at Inglewood High School. "He discovered that he loved coaching. He loved being on the floor teaching the game of basketball to the players."
Matador Memo ...
With the new hiring of Reggie Theus as CSUN's new head coach, excitement and expectations have reached a fever pitch not only locally but nationally as well … Matador Madness will help kickoff the season on October 18 at the Matadome with both the men's and women's CSUN basketball teams … Hoops fans will have an opportunity to see the many improvements at the recently renovated Matadome … New wall graphics and banners have been installed along with a much improved spectator seating area, improved video graphics, a new basketball court, and much more … CSUN will play 14 home games this year … Matador fans will also have a great early season opportunity to see the Matadors play on the road at USC on November 12 … Three Matador players have been accorded Big West Conference pre-season honors by collegesportsmadness.com … Stephan Hicks (6-6, 200, Junior, Forward, Thousand Oaks, Ca) and Stephen Maxwell (6-7, 220, Junior, Forward, Woodland Hills, Ca) have been voted second team all-league while Josh Greene (6-1, 180, Senior, Guard, Los Angeles, Ca) has been named third team all-league … Greene, Hicks and Maxwell have played significant roles for the Matadors during their careers … This trio of players are among the top returning scorers in the conference while Hicks and Maxwell are among the top rebounders in the Big West Conference … Greene returns as one of the top free throw shooters and assist men in the conference … Season Tickets are still available by calling the Associated Students Ticket Office at 818-677-2488 … For more information on ALL CSUN teams, go to gomatadors.com.
"We want to make the Northridge community, the university, the student body, and the faculty and staff be proud of the product that we put out on the basketball court. The Matadors will be the 'hardest-playing team' in the Big West Conference. It's going to be fun. I'm looking forward to the challenge." – CSUN head coach Reggie Theus