Home » Conference Notes » Currently Reading:

Big West Notebook

March 2, 2004 Conference Notes No Comments

Big West Conference Notebook

by Marcus Vanderberg

Pacific and Utah State neck and neck to the end

As the Big West Conference tournament quickly approaches, Utah State and the University of the Pacific continue to fight for the top spot in the conference. The Aggies have a half-game advantage over the Tigers at 15-1 while Pacific sits at 14-1. USU still has two tough games ahead, facing rival UC Irvine on ESPN2 Saturday night and traveling to Idaho where they will close out the season. Pacific on the other hand closes out the rest of the season at home with three home games against Cal State Northridge, Cal State Fullerton and UC Riverside.

Efevberha suspended for UC Irvine

As if UC Irvine wasn’t having enough problems already, things might only get worse. Sophomore guard/forward Mike Efevberha was suspended indefinitely by head coach Pat Douglass on Wednesday. “At this time, I have suspended Mike indefinitely for violating team and department rules,” Douglass said. Efevberha is the team’s second leading scorer at 11.1 points per game.

Cal Poly Mustangs (9-14, 4-11)

The Mustangs are in a fight just to qualify for the Big West Tournament. They are currently tied for last place with Long Beach State and is one-game behind Cal State Fullerton and UC Riverside who hold the 7th and 8th spot respectively. Senior Varnie Dennis, hobbling on a injured leg, scored 31 points in a 97-95 overtime victory over UC Riverside. With the victory, the Mustangs snapped a seven-game road losing streak.

Cal State Fullerton Titans (9-15, 5-10)

Cal State Fullerton found another way to lose – this time in a double overtime thriller against UC Santa Barbara, 98-95. With the Titans down to just nine players, they finished the game on Thursday night with just six, as three fouled out during the course of the night. Freshman Bobby Brown has found his second wind, shooting over 50 percent from three point range in his last five games. He continued his hot shooting against the Gauchos, making 7-12 from behind the arc on his way to 23 points.

Cal State Northridge Matadors (11-12, 7-8)

Head coach Bobby Braswell keeps finding ways to win with his depleted basketball team. The Matadors defeated UC Santa Barbara 80-71 last Saturday thanks to some hot shooting in the second half. The Matadors made eight straight three pointers to close out the game and ensure the victory. Junior Ian Boylan scored his 1,000th point in the win and was selected Big West Player of the Week. CSUN can secure a birth in the Big West Tournament with one more victory or a Cal State Fullerton or UC Riverside loss.

Long Beach State 49ers (6-18, 4-11)

So much for that 4-4 start in conference play. Long Beach State has gone a month since their last victory and are in danger of not qualifying for the Big West Tournament. Their latest setback – a 67-47 loss against #24 Utah State moved the 49ers into last place. After hosting Idaho on Saturday in the final home game of the season, the 49ers will finish their regular season with two games against UC Santa Barbara and Cal Poly.

UC Irvine Anteaters (11-14, 6-9)

UC Irvine needed a Jeff Gloger buzzer beater to defeat Idaho 65-63 at the Bren Events Center. The Anteaters blew a 20 point lead and was just their second victory in nine games. Barring a total collapse, UC Irvine should qualify for the Big West Tournament, but their last three games won’t be easy. They host Utah State on Saturday night before traveling to UC Santa Barbara and Cal Poly. Without Mike Efevberha, seniors Adam Parada, Stan Zuzak and Matt Okoro will be looked upon to pick up the scoring load and provide senior leadership.

UC Riverside Highlanders (8-15, 5-10)

UCR is not ending the season on a good note, dropping three in a row including a close overtime game to Cal Poly. With a tournament spot not secured yet, the Highlanders will have to win two of its last three games to secure a spot. Hosting UC Santa Barbara on Saturday, the Highlanders will close out against Cal State Northridge and Pacific, both teams which are tough to beat at home.

UC Santa Barbara Gauchos (14-10, 8-7)

The Gauchos won a crucial game on Thursday night against Cal State Fullerton as they look to secure third place in the conference. Currently they have a one-half game lead over fourth place Idaho. February has been a rough month for the Gauchos, dropping four of their last six games. Free-throw shooting has hurt UCSB as they are dead last in the conference, shooting 64 percent from the line.

Idaho Vandals (12-14, 8-8)

Thanks to some great defense, the Vandals have won seven of their last nine games. In that stretch, Idaho has held its opponents to only 54.9 points per game. The Vandals are trying to sneak into third place which would give them a first-round bye in the Big West Tournament. Senior Tyrone Hayes has been the key to their success, averaging 14.1 points and 5.6 rebounds in conference play. Senior guard Dwayne Williams, who leads the league in three pointers made with 65, sits fourth all time in the Idaho record book with 125 threes in just two seasons.

Pacific Tigers (19-7, 14-1)

With one more victory, the Tigers will tie its school record for most conference wins. The Pacific will look to extend its 10 game winning streak on Saturday against Cal State Northridge. In the first meeting, the Tigers squeaked one out 86-78 at the Matadome. Senior guard Miah Davis is making a run at Big West Player of the Year, averaging 15.0 points and 3.2 assists in conference play.

Utah State Aggies (23-2, 15-1)

With their victory over Cal State Fullerton, the Aggies closed out their home schedule at 15-0, the fourth time in school history. In that Titans victory, USU shot an impressive 68.1 percent from the field. Junior Spencer Nelson has recorded four double-doubles on the season and is still recovering from a broken nose.


Comment on this Article:

Like Hoopville on Facebook


Your Phil of Hoops

Big East looks the same in some ways and quite different in other ways

November 13, 2015 by


As year three of the new-look Big East tips off, the conference looks the same in a few ways. In other ways, though, it’s not the same, and much is to be determined.

Though a contender, Purdue will need to earn more relevance

October 15, 2015 by


Purdue has the makings of a contender in Big Ten play, but you wouldn’t know it from the conversations about the conference teams. The Boilermakers will have to earn their way to relevance despite their potential to contend.

New challenge ahead for Harvard

October 6, 2015 by


If Harvard’s great run through the Ivy League is to continue in 2015-16, the Crimson will have to get through quite a challenge this time around with a team that looks a little different.

Hoopville Archives

Reader Poll

This poll is closed! Poll activity:
start_date 2015-11-12 10:09:26
end_date 2015-11-17 23:59:59
Poll Results:
Who is your pick to win the 2016 national championship?

Phil Kasiecki on Twitter

Coaching Changes and NBA Draft Early Entrants

The coaching carousel is moving. Keep track of the latest coaching changes right here on Hoopville.

Also, keep track of players who have declared early for the NBA Draft.

College Basketball Tonight

We hope you enjoyed listening to COLLEGE BASKETBALL TONIGHT, a comprehensive look at the NCAA Tournament hosted by veteran college basketball broadcaster Ted Sarandis, joined by former St. John's and George Washington head coach Mike Jarvis, former Fairfield head coach Terry O'Connor and many great guests, including Hoopville's own Phil Kasiecki.

Here are links to the shows:

March 15, 2015 - First hour | Second hour

March 22, 2015 - First hour | Second hour

March 29, 2015 - First hour | Second hour

April 5, 2015 - First hour | Second hour | Third hour

Recruiting Coverage

2015 Boston Back to School Showcase recap

September 18, 2015 by


The Boston Back to School Showcase gave high school teams from three states and north of the border a chance for a couple of early games. We take a look back at the day and a few who stood out.

2015 Hoopville Spring Finale Notes

June 30, 2015 by


We look back at more from the 2015 Hoopville Spring Finale, where some of the championship games were worth the price of admission.

A big championship day for a local program at the Hoopville Spring Finale

June 23, 2015 by


The 2015 Hoopville Spring Finale saw a number of good championship games on Sunday to close it out, and we start our look back with a look at those games.

Player highlights from Mass Elite and Boston Warriors college showcase

June 4, 2015 by


Two big programs, Mass Elite and the Boston Warriors, got together once again on a college showcase for many of their high school players. We look at some who stood out on the evening.

2015 Massachusetts AAU Tournament notes

June 3, 2015 by


Massachusetts held its AAU championship rounds in a few age groups and its entire tournament for the oldest age group this weekend. We take a look at some of Sunday’s action in Foxboro.