December 13, 2006

Bethune-Cookman Visits Titan Gym

Dec. 13, 2006

Fullerton, CA -

Complete Release in PDF Format
Download Free Acrobat Reader


UPCOMING:
Sat., Dec. 16 - Bethune-Cookman, Titan Gym, 6:05 p.m.
Wed., Dec. 20 - Louisiana-Lafayette, Titan Gym, 7:05 p.m. (second half of doubleheader with women vs. Cal State Bakersfield at 4:30 p.m.)
Sat., Dec. 23 - San Jose State, Titan Gym, 2:05 p.m.

IN A NUTSHELL: Cal State Fullerton (6-2) opens a 3-game homestand as final preparation for the Big West Conference schedule which begins Dec. 28 at Cal Poly. The Titans haven't been 6-2 since the 1996-97 season, which is the last time they opened 7-2 as well. The Titans are 3-0 at home this season and have won seven in a row dating to last season.

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. Justin Alderson will be at the microphone for the Bethune-Cookman game.

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 Jr. 16.6 9.2r Career highs of 31 points at ULaLa and 15 rebounds at Pepperdine
C 5 Justin Burns** 6-7 Sr. 12.8 7.8r Big West Conference player of the week two weeks ago
G 3 Bobby Brown*** 6-2 Sr. 17.8 3.4a Ranks No. 4 on Titans' career scoring list with 1,504 points
G 22 Ray Reed 5-11 Jr. 12.0 4.3a Leading Big West Conference in steals (2.75) and assists (4.25)
G 0 Frank Robinson* 6-4 Jr. 12.2 5.6r Only 4-for-16 from 3-point range in last three games

OFF THE BENCH:
G 54 Marcus Crenshaw 5-10 So. 11.5 2.8a Leads team with 18 3-point field goals (in 52 tries, .346)
F 43 Chris Minardo 6-10 So. 6.9 3.1r Had 5 points, 4 rebounds in 11 quality minutes at Pepperdine
F 21 Kenneth Alexander 6-6 Jr. 4.9 4.6r Had 6 rebounds in solid 25 minutes at UCLA
F 34 Marcus Morgan 6-5 Jr. 3.3 3.7r Started first three games; sidelined by knee problem
C 42 Andrew Green 6-6 Jr. 4.8 3.8r Leads team in rebounds per minutes played
*letters earned

SERIES HISTORY: This is the first meeting between the Titans and the Bthune-Cookman Wildcats from Daytona Beach, Florida.

ABOUT THE WILDCATS: The Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference member will be completing a 4-game, 10-day pre-Christmas road trip to the West Coast, where the school never before has competed. They lost at Oregon State, 72-49, on Saturday night and lost at Oregon on Monday night, 92-64, to fall to 2-4. They play at USC on Thursday and at Fullerton on Saturday before heading home.

ABOUT THE TITANS: The Titans are trying to post their third consecutive winning season, something that hasn't been done in Fullerton since Coach George McQuarn posted four winning records between 1981-82 and 1984-85. They got off to a 4-0 start for the first time since 1989-90. The Titans feature three returning "regulars" in seniors Bobby Brown at point guard and Justin Burns at center and junior guard Frank Robinson, who was the Big West Conference's "sixth-man" of the year in 2005-06. Four-year transfers Scott Cutley and Marcus Crenshaw from Kent State and Ray Reed from Georgetown have made an immediate impact along with community college transfers Kenneth Alexander and Marcus Morgan from West Valley, Andrew Green from College of the Sequoias and Chris Minardo from Citrus College. Six different players (Minardo, Reed, Crenshaw, Cutley, Brown and Burns) have led the Titans in scoring in their first eight games.

THE COACH: Bob Burton is 54-43 in his fourth year at Cal State Fullerton and career. At .557, Burton has the second best winning percentage of any Titans' head coach, trailing only Bobby Dye (109-78, .583). He is 2-0 vs. Pepperdine.

FRIENDLY CONFINES: Under Coach Bob Burton, the Titans are 28-13 (.690) in Titan Gym and have a 7-game winning streak alive.

NEW FRILLS: Not coincidental to the recent home success, a squad of cheerleaders was added to the home court ambience for last season. Along with a flag carrier and a new student band, they join the entertainment package headed by the six-time national champion dance team.

ON THE ROAD: Under Bob Burton, the Titans have made dramatic strides as a road team. In the past two seasons plus this year to date they are 23-19 away from Titan Gym. In the previous 10 seasons the combined road record was 30-115. Burton's total CSF road record is 26-30.

LIVING GOOD: Twice this season the Titans have survived 3-point field goal tries by opponents at the buzzer that would have turned CSF victories into defeat. And both times it was the opponent's leading scorer -- Ross Mouton at Louisiana-Lafayette and Marvin Lea at Pepperdine -- taking the shot. Ironically, in both games, the Titans led by 18 in the first half -- 29-11 at ULaLa and 30-12 at Pepperdine.

FAST STARTS: With the exception of the Nov. 22 game at Texas-San Antonio (where they fell behind 19-7 at 11:36), the Titans have jumped out to early double-digit leads in every other game, to wit: 14-2 at 15:24 vs. Cal Maritime; 24-12 at 10:10 vs. Hope; 17-7 at 15:19 at Lafayette; 33-23 at 9:26 at Eastern Washington; 14-3 at 14:43 vs. UTSA; 14-4 at 15:18 at UCLA; and 13-2 at 15:42 at Pepperdine.

BOBBY FOCAL POINT: Senior point guard Bobby Brown is the focal point of the Cal State Fullerton program. An unheralded product of Westchester High School in Los Angeles, he has developed into one of the nation's finest players and an All-America candidate. He tested the NBA draft waters last summer but opted to return for his senior year. He has been nominated for the Bob Cousy Award as the nation's top point guard and is on CollegeInsider.com's pre-season Mid-Major All-American team. He has made numerous pre-season All-Big West Conference teams and is projected as player of the year by many. Last year he was first-team All-Big West and second-team All-NABC District. He needs 462 points this season to become the Titans' all-time leading scorer, surpassing All-American, Olympic gold medalist and 6-year NBA veteran Leon Wood. At Pepperdine he passed Greg Bunch and Chris Dade to move into the No. 4 spot on the list with 1,504 points. Next man ahead is Ike Harmon at 1,557.

SUPER SUB: Junior Frank Robinson was the key Titan off the bench last year when he was selected the "sixth man" of the year in the Big West Conference. He became a starter for the final three weeks of the season and played to an all-conference level, averaging 16.6 points over the last seven games capped by a 25-point, 12-rebound effort in defeat to Long Beach State in the semifinals of the post-season tournament. Overall, he averaged 11.5 points and 5.1 rebounds and was No. 3 in the conference in 3-point field goal accuracy at .445 (49 of 110). He also led the conference in steals at 1.66 per game. This year he scored 16 points in each of his first two games but has totaled only 29 in the last three, making only 4 of 16 from 3-point range.

BURNS WINS HONOR: Senior Justin Burns was selected the Big West Conference Player of the Week two weeks ago after posting a pair of double-doubles in victories at Texas-San Antonio and Louisiana-Lafayette. He averaged 15 points, 13 rebounds, 2.5 assists and 2 blocks for the week. With three double-doubles this season, he has moved into the Titans' career Top 12 list with 8. After eight games last year he was averaging only 8.6 points and 6.6 rebounds. This year his numbers are 12.8 points and 7.8 rebounds. After eight games of his sophomore year he had played in only six and was averaging 5.0 points and 2.5 rebounds.

Scott Cutley: Kent State transfer Ray Cutley broke in with a bang, scoring 31 points with 11 rebounds in his Titan debut at Louisiana-Lafayette. It was only the 62nd 30-point game by a Titan at the Div. I level. He scored the game-tying buckets in the final minute of both regulation and overtime. He came back with 19 points at Eastern Washington and a double-double with 12 points and 10 boards vs. Texas-San Antonio. At UCLA he led the team with 7 rebounds and had 11 points, all in the first half. He then had a career-high 15 rebounds to go with 10 points for another double-double at Pepperdine.

RAY REED: Georgetown transfer Ray Reed leads the Titans and the Big West Conference in assists (4.25) and steals (2.75) through the first eight games. His scoring has fallen off with a total of only 10 points in the last 3 games after five consecutive games in double figures. He made only 1 of 11 field goals at Pepperdine and is 4-for-23 in the last 3 games. He just missed a triple-double against Hope International when he had 23 points, 10 rebounds and 9 assists.

Marcus Crenshaw: He started the first three games and averaged 18 points. Playing considerably less minutes, he has averaged 7.6 points in the last five games. He leads the team with 18 3-point field goals and his total of 22 assists is No. 2.

FALLBACK, BABY: The Titans attempted 29 3-point field goals at Pepperdine, equalling the high for the Coach Bob Burton Era at Fullerton. The school record is 31 attempts and four times there have been 30 attempts. This season the Titans have averaged 21 attempts per game.

WESTCHESTER CONNECTION: Westchester High School, one of California's most successful prep basketball programs in recent times, leaves a lot of flavor on the Titans' roster. Current players Bobby Brown, Scott Cutley and Jarrel Lake all played there while Titan Assistant Coach Marlon Morton was on the WHS staff. Last year's team had two more former Comets in Jerard Moret (who transferred to West L.A. College) and John Clemmons (eligibility expired).

ONLY ONE NEW STOP: Lafayette, Louisiana, with its Cajundome is the only stop on the Titans' basketball itinerary this year where the Titans have not previously competed. Conversely, three new opponents are visiting Titan Gym -- California Maritime, Bethune-Cookman and Louisiana-Lafayette.

SURVEY SAYS: Cal State Fullerton was a consensus third-place prediction at the annual Big West Conference Basketball Media Day on Oct. 25. Both the media and coaches polls had Fullerton behind Pacific and Long Beach State.