March 8, 2010

Titans Open vs. Matadors

March 8, 2010

Anaheim, Calif. - Cal State Fullerton and Cal State Northridge go head-to-head for the third time this season at 6 p.m. Wednesday in the opening game of the men's Big West Conference Basketball Tournament at the Anaheim Convention Center.

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UPCOMING:
Wed., March 10 - vs. Cal State Northridge, Big West Conference Tournament, Anaheim Convention Center (7,673), 6 p.m.

IN A NUTSHELL: The Titans (15-14, 8-8) lost their final two home games to fall into a 3-way tie for third place and tie-breakers relegated them to a No. 5 seed and an opening round game against No. 8-seeded Cal State Northridge in the Big West Conference Tournament. If CSF wins, it would play No. 4-seeded UC Davis on Thursday night in the second game. The Titans need one more win to secure a winning season and move Coach Bob Burton into sole possession of second place in career victories at Cal State Fullerton. He currently is tied at 122 wins with George McQuarn.

AUDIO: All tournament games can be heard live on the internet. Listeners may access the CSF Athletics home page at www.fullertontitans.com and follow the links. Erik Pessolano and Kevin Barbarino describe the action.

VIDEO: All tournament games are available via videostreaming, normally on a subscription basis. Details are available on the Big West website at www.bigwest.org. Semifinals games will be televised on ESPNU and the championship game on ESPN2.

PROBABLE STARTERS:
No. Name Ht. Yr. ppg r/apg Quick Notes
G 11 Jacques Streeter* 6-0 So. 11.9 4.7a Honorable mention All-BWC; beat Cal Poly, tied Davis w/late baskets
G 0 Aaron Thompson* 6-4 Sr. 11.3 6.0r Slump in last 4 games: total of 16 pts. on 6/23 FGs; 1/11 3s; 3/7 FT shooting
C 13 Bryce Webster 6-10 Jr. 7.3 5.0r First non-start vs. UC Davis; leads team with .594 FG percentage
F 5 Gerard Anderson* 6-6 Jr. 11.7 6.1r First-team All-BWC; 47-for-56 (.839) at the foul line over last five games
F 12 Jer'Vaughn Johnson 6-6 Jr. 10.9 6.3r Honorable mention All-BWC; four double-doubles this season
OFF THE BENCH:
G 3 Devon Peltier 5-11 Jr. 10.0 0.8a Has led team in scoring four times; 70-for-167 (.419) at 3-point line
G 14 Jamel McGuire 6-5 Jr. 1.1 1.0a Missed two games with dislocated finger suffered in practice on Jan. 29
F 15 Orane Chin 6-7 So. 7.4 3.7r Averaged 18.5 points and 9 rebounds in two games vs. UC Irvine
G 21 Robbie Robinson 6-5 Jr. 2.2 1.2r Key member of Riverside City College's state championship team in `08-09
G 22 Frank Granados 5-8 Sr. 0.8 0.0a Walk-on practiced against women's team last three years
G 24 Eric Williams 6-3 Jr. 1.8 0.6a Walk-on was hero at CSUN with 5 points in final 12 seconds
F 33 Ray Miller* 6-8 Sr. 1.7 1.2r Led team last season with .631 field-goal percentage
F 42 Papa Guisse* 6-8 Sr. 0.9 1.3r Started 21 of team's 32 games last year
*letters earned

SERIES HISTORY VS. CAL STATE NORTHRIDGE: Fullerton leads this bizarre series, 33-25. The Titans have won seven in a row at Northridge but have lost the last three meetings at home. Fullerton won the first 8 meetings in the 1960s when the schools had different names (San Fernando Valley State and Orange State) but the Matadors won 9 of the next 10. At the Div. I level, Fullerton is 8-3 in Northridge but only 7-5 in Titan Gym. Northridge handed Fullerton its first home loss of this season, 78-72, on Jan. 16, getting out to a 24-10 lead as Jer'Vaughn Johnson and Bryce Webster each picked up two early fouls. Northridge made 25 of 31 free throws while the Titans made only 18 of 30. At Northridge on Feb. 13, the Titans won a record-breaking 113-112 triple overtime decision in which 11 players fouled out and there were 110 free throws attempted. In the Big West Tournament, all at the Anaheim Convention Center, Fullerton has a 2-1 advantage -- winning in the first round in 2006 and in the semifinals in 2008 and losing in the first round in 2004.

ABOUT THE MATADORS: Defending Big West champion CSUN (11-20, 6-10) is 2-4 since its triple overtime loss to Fullerton. The Matadors have used 13 different players in starting roles and use the bench generously while the Titans have had the same starting five virtually all season and play as few as 7 players. Kenny Daniels (15.6 ppg, 4.2 rpg), Lenny Daniel (11.7 pg, 7.8 rpg) and Willie Gallick (10.0 ppg, 4.8 rpg) are the statistical leaders. It will likely turn into a free-throw contest. The Matadors average 29 free-throw attempts per game on the season while their opponents shoot 27. Fullerton is even with its opponents at 23 each. In the two previous meetings, CSUN shot 80 and CSF shot 91.

THE COACH: Fullerton's Bob Burton brings a 122-91 (.573) mark into the tourney. He is in his seventh year and has tied George McQuarn (122-117 in 8 years -- 1980-81 to 1987-88) for second place in total CSF victories. Burton began the 2008-09 season with the best CSF career winning percentage at .605 (92-60), but since then the Titans are 30-31 to drop his percentage below Bobby Dye's .583 (109-78). The late Alex Omalev had the most (139-176) victories.

THE BUILDING: Under Coach Bob Burton, the Titans are 62-29 (.681) in Historic Titan Gym and were 8-5 this season after a 6-0 start. They were 3-5 at home in Big West play vs. a conference second-best 5-3 road mark. The Titans have won their last 10 home non-conference games since a loss to Wright State on Dec. 22, 2007. Burton's best single-season home record is 12-2 in 2006-07. The school record is 13-0 in 1982-83.

ROAD IMPROVEMENT: With wins in the last five road games (at Bakersfield, Long Beach, Irvine, Northridge and San Luis Obispo), the Titans have improved to 7-9 (7-6 away plus 0-3 neutral). They were better than .500 (50-42, .543 including 11-10 on neutral floors) over the previous 5 seasons away from Titan Gym. For perspective, in the previous 10 seasons (1994-95 thru 2003-04), Fullerton's combined road record was 30-115 (.207). With a 3-11 mark in his first season (2003-04), Coach Bob Burton's total CSF road record is currently 60-62 (.492).

STREAKY TEAM: The Titans have had extended stretches of brilliance and ineptitude this season. The most dramatic was the New Mexico State game, when they fell behind, 25-3; went on an extended 57-17 run to go up by 18 points only to give up an 18-6 surge to make it close. Other bad starts have been 7-30 at Utah State, 2-13 at Stephen F. Austin, 4-13 vs. Cal Poly and 10-24 vs. Cal State Northridge. Good starts have been 27-8 vs. Occidental and 17-6 vs. Cal State Bakersfield. In-game runs have included 13-0 at Pacific, 12-0 at Utah State, 11-0 and 10-0 both in the second half at UCSB, 20-3 vs. Weber State, 10-0 late at UC Davis, 10-0 early vs. Long Beach State, 13-0, 11-0 and 14-0 all in the first half vs. Occidental, 11-0 at UC Riverside and 11-0 and 12-0 in the New Mexico State rally. Conversely, 0-20 vs. NMSU, 0-12 vs. Cal State Northridge, 0-11 vs. Bakersfield and Utah State and 0-10 vs. Morehead State and Central Arkansas. On Feb. 4 at Long Beach the Titans went on a 14-1 run to close the first half but were outscored 12-2 to start the second half. At Northridge on Feb. 13 they went 11:10 (final 9:20 of first half and first 1:50 of second half) without a field goal. Against UCSB on Feb. 17 they had an 11-1 run in the second half to take their biggest lead at 54-49. On Thursday night the Titans had a 10-0 run early in the second half vs. Pacific but then gave up a 9-0 run by the Tigers.

SOLID STARTING FIVE: The Titans have used the same starting lineup in all but four of the total of 29 games. Anderson, Johnson and Streeter each have started all 29, Webster has started 28 and Thompson has started 26. Peltier (2) and Chin (2) got the other four starting calls.

MULTI-LEADERS: In 29 games, the Titans have had seven different scoring leaders or co-leaders with Aaron Thompson and Gerard Anderson taking honors eight times to lead the list (Thompson and Anderson, 8; Chin and Streeter, 5; Peltier and Johnson, 4; and Webster, 1). Seven times the leader or co-leader has come off the bench. Seven of Anderson's leadership roles came in Big West play.

THOMPSON 3-POINT LEADER: Despite a recent slump and making "only" 46 percent of his attempts in Big West Conference play, Aaron Thompson continues to lead the Big West overall in 3-point field goal percentage at .479 (45-for-94). He was on pace to break the Big West Conference seasonal record (.519 by Mike Doktorczyk of UC Irvine in 1988-89) but is 7-for-26 (.269) over the last six games (1-for-11 over the last 4 games) after making 8-of-9 (.889) over the previous three games. The school record for a season is .443 (89 of 201) by Don Leary in 1992-93. (The NCAA requires 2.5 made 3-pt. field goals per game for its national rankings by percentage).

OTHER BIG WEST LEADERS: Through overall games of March 6, the Titans led the Big West Conference in scoring (74.3 ppg), field goal percentage (.449) and blocks (3.17) and were second in 3-point field goals made per game (6.83), free-throw percentage (.719) and 3-point field goals made per game (6.78). They were last in turnover margin (-1.69). Jacques Streeter was No. 1 in assist-to-turnover ratio at 1.94 and second in assists at 4.69.

PELTIER FROM OUTSIDE: Devon Peltier has taken 231 shots this season and 167 (72 percent) have come from behind the 3-point line. He has made at least three threes in a game 14 times and five times at least five. He won the Lyle Parks, Jr., Hustle Award presented by the Titan Hoop Club.

NOTABLE BUZZER BEATERS ON VIDEO (You be the Judge): While Cal State Fullerton has a surprisingly lengthy list of buzzer-beating game-winning shots in its sub-.500 history, Jacques Streeter's game-winner -- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-mYIagYvRPI -- on Feb. 24 at Cal Poly stands out as perhaps the most difficult shot of the bunch. He dribbled at full speed around one defender near midcourt, took off from outside the 3-point line and with 6-foot-5 Jordan Lewis in his face, launched a bank shot from about 18 feet while falling to the floor. The runnerup is probably Ralphy Holmes fall-away jumper -- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NJeF2ZHUoeU&feature=related -- to win at Oregon State in the post-season NIT on March 16, 2005. More unlikely was Derek Jones' game-TYING shot -- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rpvAjKl2SiE -- on Feb. 9, 1989, vs. UNLV when he took a pass from under the basket and retreated to the corner to fire up a three before he fell into the team bench. It was the only 3-pointer of his two-season career and the Titans won in overtime, 93-92, when Wayne Williams' hit a 25-foot 3-pointer -- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DgWzjQuPfY0 -- at the buzzer.

OVERTIME SUCCESS: Fullerton has won four of six overtime games this year and eight of its last 11. Twice Fullerton teams have won five overtime games in the same season: 5-1 in 1988-89 and 5-1 in 2002-03, when the overall record was only 10-19. The school's all-time Div. I overtime record is 44-42.

TRIPLE OVERTIME: After the Feb. 13 game at Northridge, the Titans are 3-0 in triple overtime games in their 50-year history. They also are 0-2 in quadruple overtime and 3-5 in double overtime.

DODGING BULLETS: Fullerton opponents are 0-for-7 in game-winning, buzzer-beater field goal attempts this season. UCLA missed the last shot in both regulation and the first overtime on Nov. 16 (we won't count a desperation half-court three to tie in double overtime); Casper Ware missed the last shot of regulation on Feb. 4 at Long Beach; on Feb. 13 Northridge missed three game-winning attempts (Kenny Daniels at the end of regulation, Mark Hill at the end of double overtime and Vinnie McGhee's half-court shot off the rim at the end of triple overtime); and UC Davis' Mark Payne missed a baseline jumper Saturday. Orlando Johnson did hit an off-balance trey with 3.4 seconds left to force overtime at UCSB on Jan. 23 (won by UCSB) and Shawn Lewis hit a trey with 5.2 seconds left to tie the Feb.24 game at Cal Poly, which was won at the buzzer by Jacques Streeter. (Stephen F. Austin guard Denzel Barnes made 2 free throws with 0.5 seconds remaining to beat CSF on Dec. 5).

FREE THROWS: Fullerton set school records for most free throws made (44) and attempted (61) in the 113-112 triple overtime game at CSU Northridge on Feb. 13, coming up one shy in each category of the Big West records (45 of 62 by Pacific vs. San Jose State, 2/23/80). Fullerton's 36 fouls tied its school record.

MORE RECORDS: The 225 combined points on Feb. 13 at CSUN broke the Fullerton school record of 216 (Fullerton 128, Chapman 88 on Jan. 8, 1972). The 113 tied for third most by Fullerton (128 vs. Chapman; 117 vs. U.S.I.U. on Dec. 11, 1985; and 113 vs. Pasadena Nazarene in 1965-66) and the 112 were the third most allowed by Fullerton (120 at UCLA, Dec. 13, 1997, and 115 vs. UNLV, Mar. 8, 1990). No team in the Big West Conference had scored 100 points in a game this season until Fullerton (113) and Northridge (112) both did it on Saturday, thanks to three overtimes.

LIGHTS, CAMERA, ACTION, SUCCESS: Fullerton is 6-1 on TV this season -- winning at UCLA on ESPN, at UC Riverside and at Cal Poly on FSN Net, at Bakersfield on local cable, at Long Beach on ESPNU and at Irvine on Cox Cable but losing to Pacific on ESPNU.

50th YEAR RESULTS: In its 50th basketball season, Cal State Fullerton takes a 658-736 into this year's post-season. The Div. I record over the past 36 years is 494-533. The College Division (now DII) mark was 164-203 over 14 seasons.

SHORT-TERM EXPERIENCE: Despite five returning lettermen, the Titans have no players remaining on the roster who suited up during the 2007-08 Big West Conference championship and NCAA Tournament season. Jacques Streeter (32), Gerard Anderson (29), Papa Guisse (21), Aaron Thompson (16) and Ray Miller (12) did combine for 110 starts last season.

DIV. I TRANSFERS: The Titans have two new Div. I transfers eligible this season in Orane Chin (South Florida) and Jer'Vaughn Johnson (San Diego State) plus two players who began at 4-year schools but came to Fullerton via the community college route (Bryce Webster from Minnesota via Irvine Valley and Eric Williams from Metro State in Colorado via Orange Coast). The Titans have two more Div. I transfers redshirting in Sean Williams from Syracuse and Andre Hardy from Oral Roberts. That pair brings the total of Div. I transfers to CSF to 13 in the Bob Burton Era and 36 in the program's now 35-year Div. I history.

FALL SIGNEES: Cal State Fullerton received two national letters of intent in the November signing period: &\#149; De'Andre Haskins is attending Citrus College in Azusa after playing his freshman year at Valparaiso University in Indiana. The 6-foot-4 wing player out of Long Beach Jordan HS averaged 6.2 points and 2.6 rebounds for the Crusaders and, as a lefthander, will draw comparisons to recent Titan Frank Robinson.

&\#149; Isiah Umipig is a senior at Federal Way High School and lives in Seattle, Washington. The 6-1 point guard led his team to the Class 4A state championship in 2008-09 and was his team's leading scorer in the championship game win over Garfield, 62-54, in the Tacoma Dome with 19 points on 5-of-9 shooting. He played only 13 games his junior season due to an ankle injury. The title was the first in school history.

WHERE ARE THEY NOW? Former Titan guard Bobby Brown is in his second season in the NBA (only former Big West player currently in the league) and is on his fourth team (Clippers) and at each stop, there has been a head coaching change. Mike Dunleavy's withdrawal was the latest... guard Josh Akognon is playing in Europe for BC Kalev / Cramo in Tallinn, Estonia (west of Russia, south of Finland and north of Latvia)... guard Frank Robinson recently joined the Los Angeles D-Fenders of the NBA Development League. Through 20 games he was averaging 14.4 points. He began the season in China after being a late cut by the Atlanta Hawks... forward Scott Cutley is averaging 16 points thru 36 games for Central Entrerriano Gualeguaychu in Argentina... Marcio Lassiter is playing for Smart Gilas, the newly formed Philippine national team.