Heavy Travel Schedule Begins in Stockton

Jan. 14, 2008

Stockton, Calif. -
UPCOMING:
Thurs., Jan. 17 -- at Pacific, Spanos Center (6,150), 7 p.m.
Sat., Jan. 19 -- at UC Davis, The Pavilion (7,600), 7 p.m.
Wed., Jan. 22 -- UC Riverside, Titan Gym (4,000), 7:05 p.m.

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IN A NUTSHELL: The Titans (10-5, 3-1) make their only airborn road trip of the Big West Conference schedule this week with the new Stockton-Davis swing as they begin a stretch of six road games out of the next seven contests. They will be looking to regain their shooting touch, particularly from behind the 3-point line. Since hitting their first seven treys vs. Cal Poly on Thursday, they have made only 12-of-45 (.267) including only 5-of-22 (.227) vs. UCSB on Saturday which in part cost their them first BWC loss.

AUDIO: All Titan games can be heard live on the internet on computers with sound cards. Listeners may access the CSF Athletics home page at www.fullertontitans.com and follow the links. Mel Franks will announce the Pacific and UC Davis contests.

VIDEO: All Titan home games and road Big West Conference games are available via videostreaming on a subscription basis. Details are available on the Big West website at www.bigwest.org.

PROBABLE STARTERS:
No. Name Ht. Yr. ppg r/apg Quick Notes F 2 Scott Cutley* 6-5 Sr. 13.3 7.0r Just missed triple double vs. SUU w/15 points, 10 boards, 8 assists
F 34 Marcus Morgan* 6-5 Jr. 6.1 6.3r Career highs of 13 points at Arizona, 11 rebounds at Saint Mary's
G 1 Josh Akognon 6-1 Jr. 20.5 3.0r 30-or-more points three times this season; made only 2 of last 20 treys
F 5 Frank Robinson** 6-4 Sr. 15.2 6.7r Second double-double with 17 points, 10 rebounds vs. UC Irvine
G 15 Junior Russell 5-6 Jr. 5.7 2.7a Made all 6 shots (4 treys) to match season high with 16 points vs. Cal Poly
OFF THE BENCH:
C 21 Kenneth Alexander* 6-6 Sr. 3.9 1.9r Career-high 17 points off the bench at Southern Utah
G 22 Ray Reed* 5-11 Sr. 3.9 1.1a Season-high 11 points vs. Southern Utah
G 54 Marcus Crenshaw* 5-10 Jr. 9.9 2.3a Scored 16 points in 20 minutes vs. UC Irvine
C 42 Andrew Green* 6-6 Sr. 3.7 2.7r Grabbed 7 rebounds in 20 minutes at UC Riverside
G 11 Marcio Lassiter 6-2 Jr. 3.1 0.7a Career-high 11 points in 10 minutes vs. Furman
C 13 Eddie Lima 6-9 Jr. 2.1 1.6r Has played only 5 minutes over last 11 games
*letters earned

SERIES HISTORIES: The Titans trail the series vs. Pacific, 41-32, but swept three meetings last year to snap a 6-game losing streak and start reversing a 2-19 run dating to 1995-96. Fullerton has won 2 of 5 at the Spanos Center after losing on the previous 13 visits. The Titans lead the series vs. UC Davis, 6-1, but lost the last meeting, 77-68, on March 3 in the Aggies' season finale. Fullerton is 2-1 in the Pavilion.

ABOUT THE TIGERS: The Tigers (11-5, 2-1), like the Titans, saw a 3-game winning streak snapped on Saturday when they lost at Cal State Northridge. They are 5-1 at home, losing only to Pepperdine. Steffan Johnson (15.6 ppg), Chad Troyer (11.8 ppg) and Anthony Brown (10.9 ppg) are the leading scorers and Brown is the top rebounder at 6.3 rpg. UoP shoots 49 percent from the floor as a team while holding opponents to 43 percent and they are outrebounding foes by a margin 5.3 rpg.

ABOUT THE AGGIES: The Aggies (7-9, 1-2) host UC Irvine on Thursday night. They are in their first official season in the Big West Conference. They are 6-1 at home, losing only to Oregon State. Vince Oliver (12.4 ppg), Shane Hanson (11.6 ppg) and Kyle Brucculeri (9.4 ppg) are the top scoring threats. They are being outrebounded at a 7.1 rpg clip.

THE COACH: Bob Burton is 78-56 in his fifth year at Cal State Fullerton and career. At .582, Burton has dropped back behind Bobby Dye (109-78, .583) as the second winningest coach in Titan history. He is 3-6 vs. Pacific and Bob Thomasson, 1-3 in Stockton; and 5-1 vs. UC Davis and Gary Stewart, 2-1 in Davis.

THESE 30 ROAD WINS MUCH QUICKER: Under Bob Burton, the Titans have made dramatic strides as a road team. In the past three seasons plus this season to date, they are 32-28 (.533) away from Titan Gym. For the previous 10 seasons (1994-95 thru 2003-04) the combined road record was 30-115 (.207). With a 3-11 mark in his first season (2003-04), Burton's total CSF road record is 35-39 (.473).

OUT OF THE GATE: The Titans dusted off the record book in bolting to a 3-0 conference start for the first time since Coach George McQuarn's 1983-84 team opened 4-0 behind senior point guard Leon Wood. The Titans won their conference opener at home for the first time since 1984 (0-10 in the interim) with a 93-83 win over UC Irvine on Jan. 4 and then posted their most lopsided road victory in 11 seasons with a 77-47 win at UC Riverside on Jan. 7. The Titans held UCR to 27.1 percent shooting from the floor, the lowest figure by a Div. I opponent (second lowest overall) since records are available (since the 1980-81 season). They scored their second most lopsided Big West win over Cal Poly (14 points), snapping a 2-game losing streak to the Mustangs.

HEALING MAN CUTLEY: The Titans' returning first-team All-Big West Conference senior forward Scott Cutley returned to the practice floor during Thanksgiving weekend, came off the bench at Arizona and started at Montana, six weeks after suffering a fractured right ankle. Last season he missed only one game despite a broken thumb. He currently ranks No. 2 in the Big West in rebounding at 7.0 rpg per game, No. 10 in scoring at 13.3 points per game and No. 7 in field goal percentage at .504. He posted three consecutive double-doubles vs. Central Michigan, Southern Utah and Montana and just missed a triple-double vs. the Thunderbirds.

AKOGNON LIKES THE TEMPO: Josh Akognon is already two-thirds of the way toward breaking the Cal State Fullerton single-season record for 3-point field goals (89 by Don Leary in 1992-93). With 61 treys in 15 games, he is averaging 4.07 per game and if he maintains that pace he would hit No. 90 in game No. 23 on Feb. 14 vs. UC Davis. He has made four or more in a game nine times with a best of seven on three occasions. But he has made only 2 of his last 20 attempts since hitting his first four vs. Cal Poly on Thursday night. The Washington State transfer led the Cougars in scoring in 2005-06 and made just under two treys per game while averaging 10.3 points. This year he is among the Big West leaders in scoring (2nd at 20.5 ppg), 3-point field goals (1st at 4.07 per game) and free-throw percentage (1st at .900 on 45 of 50). At Saint Mary's he grabbed a career-high 9 rebounds.

ROBINSON REBOUNDS: Frank Robinson sat out the Dec. 17 Southern Utah game with an ankle injury but has played well since returning. He scored 16 of his game-high 20 points before intermission on 6-for-9 shooting vs. Montana and had 22 points and 5 rebounds vs. Wright State. At the Saint Mary's tournament he averaged 15 points and 5.5 rebounds. He ranks No. 5 in scoring (15.2 ppg) in the Big West and No. 3 in rebounding (6.7). A 2-for-15 in 3-point shooting the last three games has knocked him out of the top ten in makes and percentage. He's had two double-doubles -- at Central Michigan with 15 points and 10 rebounds and vs. UCI with 17 points and 10 rebounds. In the last three games he has made only 2 of 15 3-point tries.

MORGAN SHINES IN TOUGHEST SPOTS: Marcus Morgan has had his best statistical games against the tougher opponents this season. At Arizona he scored 13 points and grabbed 9 rebounds while playing solid defense. At Saint Mary's he had another strong defensive game and had 7 points and a career-high 11 rebounds. His biggest play of the year was blocking the potential game-winning layup by Montana's Andrew Strait with one second left in regulation on Dec. 20. He has made 11-of-17 field goals (.647) in Big West play, averaging 8.3 ppg and 7.5 rpg. He has made 8 of 9 free throws since going 0-for-5 vs. UC Irvine on Jan. 4.

CRENSHAW SPARK PLUG: Junior guard Marcus Crenshaw, the Big West Conference's Sixth Man of the Year in 2006-07, continues to provide an offensive spark off the bench, ranking as the Titans' No. 4 scorer at 9.9 points per game. He started at Montana (and Central Michigan) after 31 consecutive appearances off the bench. He also started his first three games as a Titan in November of 2006 when the roster was short three suspended players. With 119 3-point baskets as a Titan, he has moved into the No. 10 spot on the Titans' career list (one behind Ryan Dillon in ninth place) but he is still 49 attempts away from that Top Ten. In the last six home games he is 18-for-32 (.563) from behind the arc compared to 5-for-22 (.227) over the last four road games.

RUSSELL ERUPTS: Point guard Junior Russell has been a Jekyl-Hyde scorer this season. He has scored 9 or more points 5 times and had 2 or less on seven occasions. Twice he has scored 16 points -- at Central Michigan and Thursday night vs. Cal Poly, when he got 8 points in the first four minutes en route to a 6-for-6 shooting effort that included four treys. He missed most of the second half vs. Furman due to a head injury. He had a season-high 5 steals on Saturday vs. UC Santa Barbara.

TWO-HEADED POINT GUARD: The Titans have replaced departed point guard Bobby Brown (starring in Germany) with the tandem of Junior Russell and Marcus Crenshaw. The righthanded Russell usually starts but southpaw Crenshaw has played more minutes (22.6 to 18.9 mpg). Russell has 40 assists to 35 for Crenshaw. Combined, they are averaging 15.6 points and 5.0 assists, not far off Brown's senior year numbers of 20.2 ppg and 5.1 apg.

INSTANT OFFENSE: Like Marcus Crenshaw, Marcio Lassiter has provided an offensive spark off the bench. The transfer from San Francisco City College scored 9 points in 11 minutes at Montana, 8 points in 19 minutes vs. Montana, 11 points in 10 minutes vs. Furman and 5 points in 3 minutes vs. UC Santa Barbara.

30-POINT VICTORIES: The Titans have won three games by 30 or more points (Southern Utah, Furman and at UC Riverside) this season and nine (one on the road) in Coach Bob Burton's four-plus year tenure. By comparison, predecessors Donny Daniels had one 30-or-more-point win in three seasons, Bob Hawking had four (one on the road) in six seasons, Brad Holland had none in two seasons, John Sneed had one in four seasons, George McQuarn had 10 (one on the road) in eight seasons and Bobby Dye had seven (two on the road) in six seasons. The list of road Div. I era 30-point wins: 101-69 at Cal State Bakersfield on 1/3/76; 87-56 at Cal State Northridge on 11/27/76; 90-60 at Hawaii on 11/27/83; 89-57 at UC Irvine on 1/25/97; and 77-47 at UC Riverside on 1/7/08.

FALL SIGNEES: The Titans signed two incoming players during the November signing period -- Aaron Thompson, a 6-4, 205-pound junior wing from Cerritos College and previously of Washington High School in L.A.; and Jacques Streeter, a 6-foot, 175-pound point guard at Finley Prep School in Las Vegas and previously at Fremont High School in L.A.