Practice Begins for 2013-14 CSUN Men’s Basketball Team

Editors Note: This is the first in a series of pre-season reports on the 2013-14 CSUN men's basketball team. New reports will be posted on each Monday, Wednesday and Friday on leading up to the first regular season game on Nov. 8 against Hope International at the Matadome.

Friday (Sept. 27) … Practice, Practice, Practice !!!

Monday (Sept. 30) … The pre-season basketball magazines are hitting the newsstands … CSUN is lookin' good !!!

Wednesday (Oct. 2) … A Los Angeles high school and collegiate coaching legend helps Reggie Theus kick start his coaching career.

Friday (Oct. 4) … Stephen Maxwell values his education as much as his play on the basketball court. 

Bob Vazquez, Assistant Athletic Director, Strategic Communications

Northridge, Calif. –
One month into the collegiate football season, and already chatter is erupting about the 2013-14 basketball season that is on the horizon.

But the first order of business is practice, practice, practice. Under a new NCAA rule, schools can start practicing 42 days before the time of the first regular season game, meaning CSUN began practice on Friday (Sept. 27) for their regular season opener on Nov. 8 against Hope International at the Matadome. Tipoff is slated for 7:00 pm.

Cal State Northridge men's basketball is off-and-running. Fourteen players, including eight newcomers, practiced for two and one-half hours on Friday (Sept. 25) under the watchful eye of first year head coach Reggie Theus.

"I want to do something a little different that I have done before," said Theus. "Forty-two days before we play our first regular season game is a long time. I don't want the guys to get stale The first four or five days of practice will be conducted like an NBA training camp. We will do a lot of drills and a lot of non-basketball orientated stuff. It will be a matter of getting in shape and getting an understanding of what we are trying to accomplish. It will be a good experience for the team for what is done on that level of basketball. I haven't done this on a college level so I am hoping for positive results."

Theus ran the team through a spirited and energetic practice that lasted two and one-half hours. Theus likes the spirit of the team, but he says there is plenty of work ahead.

"The team is enthusiastic," says Theus, who says the first day of practice was a tough workout. "We got a lot of running in. This is a very special group of players who don't mind working hard. The team is in good shape, but not in great basketball shape. We ran a lot of drills but didn't play a lot of basketball. I am very encouraged that is a group of players will work, and as long as they work hard, the wins will come because we have outworked the other team."

Theus, who is only the fifth head coach in the 55-year history of Matador basketball, will begin his second stint as a head coach on the collegiate level. For two seasons (2005-06, 2006-07), Theus directed New Mexico State basketball program to a 41-23 record that included a trip to the NCAA Tournament in 2006-07 with a 25-9 mark. 

Matador Memo ...
CSUN's non-league game at USC (Nov. 12) will be televised on the Pac-12 Networks … Game time at the Galen Center, the new home of Trojans basketball, is set for 8:00 pm … Speaking of USC, Cal State Northridge will continue its trend of playing at least one game each season against a member of the Pac-12 Conference … In the previous eleven seasons, CSUN has played a Pac-12 school at least once during the season which includes the game against USC Trojans in 2013-14 … In CSUN's basketball history, the Matadors have played ten schools from the Pac-12 including Arizona State, California, Colorado, Oregon, Stanford, UCLA, USC, Utah, Washington and Washington State … The television schedule from the Big West Conference is expected to be announced in the next couple weeks … CSUN has been a popular team on television in recent years … During the previous five seasons, Cal State Northridge has been on television 32 times, including games on CBS, Fox Sports Net, ESPNU and the Pac-12 Networks.

"Our objective is to make a student-athlete successful not only at CSUN but in life. This is the start of their journey. We want to make the Northridge community, the university, the student body, and the faculty and staff be proud of the product we put out on the basketball court." –
CSUN head coach Reggie Theus