November 22, 2008

CSUN Road Journey Continues At New Mexico's "The Pit"

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Nov. 22, 2008

Game Gossip ...
Next stop, a welcome home to Albuquerque, New Mexico, for Cal State Northridge senior guard Josh Jenkins ... The Matadors basketball team enters phase three of its six-game road trip with a non-league game at New Mexico (11/24/08, 7:00 p.m. mt) ... For Jenkins, it will mean a large group of family and friends who will be cheering for Jenkins who starred at Valley High School ... Jenkins was a first team All-State selection after a superb senior season that saw Jenkins lead the state of New Mexico in points (28.0 ppg) and assists (8.4 apg) per game ... Jenkins is enjoying an outstanding senior season as a collegian ... Jenkins is CSUN's leading scorer (15.7 ppg) and is shooting .594 19-for-32) from the floor ... Against Stanford, Jenkins tallied a career-high 24 points (10-for-12 from the floor) along with six assists and two steals in 28 minutes.

Matador Memo ...
Cal State Northridge is 1-2 thus far ... Following a 73-62 win over Cal Lutheran (11/14/08), the Matadors have dropped games at Stanford (103-85, 11/18/08) and at Cal State Bakersfield (67-65, 11/21/08) ... Senior point-guard Josh Jenkins (5-10, 185, Senior, Guard, Albuquerque, NM) leads the team in scoring (15.7 ppg) and steals (10), and is shooting .594 (19-for-32) from the floor ... Rob Haynes (6-4, 185, Senior, Cerritos, Ca) checks in at 12.0 ppg, followed by Willie Gallick (6-8, 225, RS Junior, Forward, Nanaimo, B.C.) at 10.0 ppg ... Tremaine Townsend (6-9, 225, Senior, Forward, Phoenix, Az) and Tony Osunsanmi (6-4, 190, Junior, Ontario, Ca) are each averaging 8.0 rebounds per game.

Series Story ...
New Mexico has won all three meetings with Cal State Northridge (99-82 in 1969-70, 81-73 in 1975-76, and 86-73 in 1994-95) ... The Matadors will be playing in one of the hottest venues for collegiate basketball, The Pit .... With the closing of Yankee Stadium in 2008, Jeff Gordon of Fox Sports rated the remaining "Old School" venues in all of sports ... The Top 10 list includes Wrigley Field, Fenway Park, Notre Dame Stadium, and The Pit (18,018) ... Starting the 2008-09 season, The Pit has been the scene of 740 games with 598 victories for a winning percentage of .806.

Lobo Ledger ...
New Mexico suffered a rare home loss in its last game (11/22/08), a 72-71 decision to Central Florida ... Prior to the Central Florida game, six Lobo players were averaging in double-figures led by Guard/Forward Tony Danridge at 14.0 ppg and forward Roman Martinez at 13.3 ppg ... Martinez leads the team in rebounding (8.3 rpg) followed by guard Phillip McDonald at 7.3 boards per game ... Steve Alford is in his second season as head coach of the Lobos ... UNM was 24-9 in Alford's first season in 2007-08 ... The Lobos are picked to finish fifth in the Mountain West Conference (MWC) behind UNLV, BYU, San Diego State and Utah.

Schedule Story ...
This current six game road trek is the longest since the 1993-94 season when the Matadors packed their suitcases for a seven game journey to UC Irvine, St. Mary's, Colorado, Northeastern Illinois, Notre Dame, Sacramento St. and California ... After games at Stanford (85-103, and at Cal State Bakersfield (65-67), the six game road trip kicks into high gear when CSUN travels to The Pit in Albuquerque to face another high profile national program, the New Mexico Lobos on Nov. 24 (7:00 p.m.) ... From there, the Matadors travel to relatively uncharted territory with two games in the East ... Only four other times in the previous 50 years of Matador basketball has the team ventured this far from home ... First, there is a stop on Nov. 29 (3:00 p.m. et) at Rider College which is located in Lawrenceville, New Jersey ... Two days later, the Matadors will take a 45-minute bus trip to Philadelphia to play Drexel University on Dec. 1 (7:00 p.m. et) ... On Dec. 7 (7:30 p.m.), the six-game road trip ends with a contest at UCLA.

Coaches Corner ...
Bobby Braswell, the 2007-08 Big West Coach of the Year, is in his 13th season as head coach of the Cal State Northridge Matadors ... Braswell has coached 358 games in his duties as head coach, and has produced a record of 189-169 (.514) ... Braswell has guided Cal State Northridge to post-season play in each of his 12 seasons, reaching the conference tournament championship game on four occasions ... In past seasons under Braswell, the Matadors have prided themselves on tough defense and a productive offense ... Last year, the Matadors forced the opponents into 557 turnovers, produced 274 steals (#1 in the Big West, #15 in the nation), and outrebounded the opposition, 1,113-1,092 ... Braswell's teams have been ranked in the Top 25 in steals nationally in eleven of the last 12 seasons.

Fast Facts ...
On his 23rd birthday, Deon Tresvant (6-0, 170, Senior, Guard, Long Beach, Ca) scored a team-high 15 points at Cal State Bakersfield (11/21/08) ... Rob Haynes (6-4, 185, Senior, Guard, Cerritos, Ca) now has 112 career three-pointers which is one short of Davin White (2003-05) who occupies eighth place in the Cal State Northridge record book ... Josh Jenkins (5-10, 185, Senior, Guard, Albuquerque, NM) has 206 career assists and is nearing the tenth spot all-time at CSUN which is occupied by Jonathan Heard (218, 2004-08) ... The 38 career blocks by Tremaine Townsend (6-9, 225, Senior, Forward, Phoenix, Az) is ninth-best in school history and one short of the eighth position held by Pat Bolden (1984-88).

Team Talk ...
Tremaine Townsend (6-9, 225, Senior, Forward, Phoenix, Az), Deon Tresvant (6-0, 170, Senior, Guard, Long Beach, Ca), Josh Jenkins (5-10, 185, Senior, Guard, Albuquerque, NM) and Rob Haynes (6-4, 185, Senior, Guard, Cerritos, Ca) lead a chorus of eight talented letter winners plus the influx of four new recruits and four redshirts in 2008-09 ... Townsend led the Big West in rebounding (9.8 rpg) and blocked shots (1.3 bpg) while Jenkins led the conference in assists (191, 6.4 apg) ... Tresvant led the team in scoring (13.9 ppg) despite the fact he didn't start one game last year ... Haynes is a three-year starter who provides offensive firepower from behind the three-point line ... There is plenty of veteran experience from such players as Rodrigue Mels (6-3, 180, Senior, Guard, Les Abymes, Guadeloupe), Tony Osunsanmi (6-4, 190, Junior, Forward, Ontario, Ca), Therin Taylor (6-6, 185, Junior, Forward, Richmond, Ca) and Michael Lizarraga (6-7, 230, Sophomore, Forward, Dixon, Ca.) ... Four redshirts are expected to play a lot of minutes this year ... This quartet includes Willie Galick (6-8, 225, RS Junior, Forward, Nanaimo, B.C.), Jermaine Smith (6-9, 230, RS Junior, Center, Irvington, NJ), Mark Hill (5-11, 175, Junior, Guard, Los Angeles, Ca) and Matthew Wallace (6-2, 170, RS Freshman, Junior, Los Angeles, Ca) ... The list of new players includes Vincent Cordell (6-6, 210, Junior, Forward, Huntsville, Al), Xavier Crawford (7-0, 220, Junior, Center, Richfield, Mn), Kenny Daniels (6-4, 210, Junior, Forward/Guard, St. Louis, Mo) and Dallas Rutherford (6-2, 175, Freshman, Guard, Northridge, Ca) ... CSUN is expected to be strong at both ends of the court ... Last year in chalking up a 20-10 record, CSUN led the league in holding the opposition to only .419 shooting, .307 in 3-point field goal percentage defense, steals (274), rebounding (37.1 rpg) and blocked shots (3.23 bpg) ... CSUN was second in the league in scoring (78.0 ppg) and third in field goal percentage (.463) ... The Matadors return four of its top six scorers from a year ago.

Television Time ...
Last year, Cal State Northridge was on television a school record eight times ... That included games on ESPNU and Fox Sports Prime Ticket ... This year's schedule finds the Matadors on television six times ... That includes four games on Fox Sports Prime Ticket (Dec. 7 at UCLA, Jan. 31 at Cal Poly, Feb. 14 vs UC Riverside, Feb. 28 vs Long Beach State), and two games on ESPNU (Jan. 29 at UC Santa Barbara, Feb. 18 at UC Irvine) ... For the fourth straight season, the Matadors have partnered with CSTV and the Big West Conference to present live video streaming of all league games and non-conference home contests ... Click on the Big West TV banner on the front page of www.gomatadors.com for more information.

Pre-Season Potpourri ...
In its pre-season college basketball issue, Sports Illustrated has predicted a berth in the NCAA Tournament for the Matadors ... This recognition is just the latest in a series of lofty predictions for the 2007-08 Big West regular season tri-champions ... Cal State Northridge was ranked 25th in the CollegeInsider.com Mid-Major Top 25 pre-season poll ... The Matadors generated 118 points, and was only one of four teams from the west to be ranked in the Top 25 among mid-major teams ... The other west teams are Gonzaga (#1, 754 points), St. Mary's (#3, 616 points), and San Diego (#8, 481 points) ... For the first time in school history, the Matadors received a vote in the pre-season Associated Press men's basketball poll ... Cal State Northridge is the only school from the Big West Conference to receive a vote in the Associated Press pre-season poll.

Pre-Season Predictions ...
Cal State Northridge is the choice of the Big West coaches and media, and five national pre-season magazines to win the Big West title ... The Matadors received eight first place votes and 64 points from the conference coaches ... UC Santa Barbara received the other first place vote and a total of 56 points ... Pacific was picked to finish third (48 points ) followed by Cal State Fullerton (42 points), UC Davis (28 points), Cal Poly and UC Irvine with 23 points apiece, Long Beach State (21 points) and UC Riverside (19 points) ... The Big West media poll has the Matadors atop the pre-season league standings with 173 points (14 first place votes) followed by UCSB (156 points, three first-place votes), Pacific (107 points, three first place votes), Cal State Fullerton (107 points, one first place vote), Long Beach State (96 points), UC Irvine (73 points), UC Davis (65 points), Cal Poly (54 points) and UC Riverside (49 points) ... The Sporting News, Blue Ribbon College Basketball Yearbook, Lindy's College Basketball Magazine, Athlon Sports College Basketball Magazine and Basketball Times have all picked the Matadors win the Big West title in 2008-09 ... Tremaine Townsend (6-9, 225, Senior, Forward, Phoenix, Az) and Deon Tresvant (6-0, 170, Senior, Guard, Long Beach, Ca) were named to the pre-season Big West All-Conference team.

Graduated Gossip ...
All four seniors on last year's 20-10 Matador team are doing just fine ... Calvin Chitwood is playing professional basketball in Japan, while Jayme Miller is playing professionally in Holland, while Jonathan Heard is playing professionally in Finland ... Rai Colston is an assistant basketball coach at Chaminade High School in Woodland Hills ... Chitwood is playing for Niigata Albirex BB ... Chitwood, a four-year starter, ended his CSUN career as the school's #10 all-time leading scorer (1,170 points) ... Heard, who ended his four-year Matador career as the school's #3 all-time leading scorer (1,362 points) and #9 all-time rebounder (534), is playing for Team LoKoKo in Finland ... Miller, who started all 30 games in 2007-08, and provided strength and leadership during his senior season, is playing for Aris Friesland (Holland) in the Dutch Professional League ... During their tenure at Cal State Northridge, Chitwood, Heard, Miller and Colston combined to play 350 games, score 3,065 points, and grab 1,311 rebounds.

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