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Men's Basketball

Tough Road Trip To Test Cal State Fullerton


2017-18 Men's Basketball Release No. 11

Cal State Fullerton is enjoying its first 4-0 start to conference play since the 1983-84 season, and now faces stiff road tests against UC Santa Barbara and Long Beach State this week.



Titans Attempt To Stay Unbeaten In League

Cal State Fullerton is off to the program’s first 4-0 start in conference play since the 1983-84 season when the Big West then was known as the PCAA.

The Titans begin a tough stretch in Big West play with this week’s road games against UC Santa Barbara and Long Beach State.  The last time a Titan squad began the conference schedule 5-0 was in 1978-79.  That season, the Titans recorded the best ever conference start in school history at 6-0.  Head coach Dedrique Taylor’s troops have an opportunity to match that mark this week.

Close Encounters
After posting a 6-3 record in games decided by five points or less during the 2016-17 season, Taylor’s Titans have demonstrated a continued ability to win the close contests.  CSF is 4-0 in games decided by five points or less this season, with three of those wins coming against Big West opponents – UC Riverside (68-65), Cal Poly (101-97 in OT) and UC Irvine (67-64).  Hawai‘i (4-0) and UC Davis (3-0) are the other two Big West teams this season which have fared well in tight games.

On The Tube, On The Tablet

Five games will be available this week via ESPNU, Fox Sports West or WatchESPN.  Fox Sports West is airing the Saturday showdown between rivals Cal State Fullerton and Long Beach State from the Walter Pyramid.  UCSB is hosting a game on ESPNU for the second time.

Sat., Jan. 20 – UC Irvine at UC Santa Barbara

Sat., Jan. 20 – Cal State Fullerton at Long Beach State

Wed., Jan. 17 – CSUN at UC Riverside
Thur., Jan. 18 – Cal Poly at UC Irvine
Sat., Jan. 20 – Cal Poly at CSUN

Travel Update
Schools traveling to UC Santa Barbara for games typically take U.S. Highway 101 North to get to the Thunderdome.  But a series of deadly mudslides in Montecito last week – running down mountainsides that were charred from last month’s Thomas Fire – caused closure to the 101 as crews continue to clear a portion of the highway covered in muck, trees, abandoned cars and anything else the slides swept from nearby homes.  Teams coming from the south are being asked to take alternate routes involving Interstate 5 North to the 166 West or the 46 West.

Monson Nears No. 6 Spot On Wins List
Long Beach State head coach Dan Monson is now 108-58 all-time in Big West games – the seventh-most wins among coaches.  He is one win away from tying and two from surpassing former UC Irvine mentor Pat Douglass (1997-2010), who had 109 Big West wins in 13 seasons.

Thunderdome Talk
UC Santa Barbara is 7-0 at home this season, its longest Thunderdome win streak since the 2014-15 campaign.


CAL STATE FULLERTON AT UC SANTA BARBARA (BIGWEST.TV) - Cal State Fullerton had lost seven straight at the Thunderdome before upending UC Santa Barbara, 79-53, last season.  The Titans haven’t won consecutive games at UCSB since the 2004-05 and 2005-06 seasons.  UCSB is 7-0 at home this season.  The Gauchos haven’t won eight in a row at home since enjoying a 11-game run between the 2009-10 and 2010-11 seasons.  This game features four of the top six scorers in the Big West – UCSB with No. 1 Max Heidegger (21.6 ppg) and No. 4 Leland King II (16.7), and CSF with No. 3 Kyle Allman (17.8) and No. 6 Khalil Ahmad (16.0).

CSUN AT UC RIVERSIDE (WatchESPN) - Both squads seek their first Big West victory.  UC Riverside has lost six straight but has been competitive in conference play despite the 0-4 start.  The Highlanders have corralled 10 or more offensive rebounds in seven straight games.  They rank No. 3 in the Big West in offensive rebounds per game (10.6).  CSUN senior Tavrion Dawson is now 18 points away from 1,000, as he aims to become the 19th player in Matador history to achieve the milestone.  PXP: Trent Rush • COLOR: Richie Schueler

LONG BEACH STATE AT UC DAVIS (BIGWEST.TV) - A key game between two of the top Big West teams, UC Davis is riding a 16-game home court win streak, which is currently tied for the nation’s fifth-longest.  Long Beach State senior Gabe Levin has reached double figures in points in 10 straight games, and is averaging 21.3 points in four Big West contests.  Aggie senior Chima Moneke has scored 20 or more in three straight games.

CAL POLY AT UC IRVINE (WatchESPN) - UC Irvine is 6-2 when scoring above 70 points, and 1-11 when under that mark. Cal Poly scored 80 and 97 points in its first two Big West games, then had a season-low 45 points versus Hawai'i.  Mustang senior Victor Joseph has scored in double figures in nine straight games.  Anteater sophomore Evan Leonard has scored 20 or more in three straight.  PXP: Sam Farber • COLOR: Bill Herenda • SIDELINE: Courtney Sweet

Coach, Team Years (School/Career) School Big West Career
Dan Monson, Long Beach State 10/20 179-170 108-58 349-293
Russell Turner, UC Irvine 7/7 146-118 74-44 Same as school
Joe Callero, Cal Poly 8/18 117-150 60-73 256-280
Jim Les, UC Davis 6/15 98-109 49-52 252-249
Eran Ganot, Hawai‘i 2/2 54-27 24-12 57-29
Dedrique Taylor, Cal State Fullerton 4/4 58-82 24-44 Same as school
Reggie Theus, CSUN 4/6 41-95 19-44 82-118
Joe Pasternack, UC Santa Barbara 1/4 12-5 1-2 66-65
Justin Bell, UC Riverside 1/1 0-4 0-4 Same as school