Warrior Insider

The Inside Source for Hawaii Men's Basketball

Big West weekly review-preview

Believe it or not, the Big West Conference regular season has just four more weeks remaining. That means every scheduled game – completed or canceled – could make a significant impact in the standings.

An example already happened last week. A split between UC Irvine and CSU Bakersfield dropped the Anteaters closer to the rest of the pack. UCI is now, technically, tied for first place with UC Santa Barbara. CSU Bakersfield is next at 8-4.

Both UCI and UCSB are 6-2 in conference play. If a tiebreaker were to be used right now, UCI would be ranked first due to its two victories over UCSB earlier in the season.

UCSB had two home games canceled last week due to a COVID-19 issue with Long Beach State. It could be debated that two UCSB wins over Long Beach State could have put the Gauchos in first place right now. But it could also be debated that two UCSB losses to Long Beach State could have kept UCI in sole possession of first place.

Bottom line, the canceled games create an endless string of what-ifs.

Among Big West teams, the two teams affected the most by COVID-19 issues have been UC Davis and Long Beach State. It so happens that those two teams will play each other in much-needed games for both.

The Aggies are 1-3 in conference games, and have already had eight conference games canceled. The 49ers are 2-2 in conference games, and had six other conference games canceled.

In this bizarre season with bewildering adjustments, both UCD and Long Beach State remain in contention for the regular season championship.

The final positions in the regular-season standings will be based on winning percentage because the teams are playing an unequal amount of games. As such, either UCD or Long Beach could make a significant move up the standings with a sweep this weekend. The 49ers, for example, could rise as high as a tie for second place if they sweep UCD this weekend.

In other words, there are only four weeks remaining, but a lot is yet to be determined. Here are the latest standings …

Best Game of Last Week
CSUN 80, UC Davis 77. The Matadors led by 14 points with 11 minutes remaining, but the Aggies managed to get as close as 79-77 in the closing seconds. CSUN went 4 for 10 on free throws in the final 2:25, allowing UCD to make it close. UCD junior Caleb Fuller scored 30 points in 23 minutes off the bench in the loss.

Games to Watch This Week
UC Santa Barbara at Hawai’i. These are the two hottest teams in the Big West right now. UCSB is on an eight-game winning streak; Hawai’i is on a three-game winning streak. Both teams should be rested and prepared – this is the Warriors’ third consecutive week at home; the Gauchos did not play last week due to a canceled series with Long Beach State.

Stat Check

Here are the current leaders among Big West players …

TJ Starks (CSUN) 19.7
Isaiah Washington (Beach) 16.8
JaQuori McLaughlin (UCSB) 16.6
Ezra Manjon (UCD) 16.0
Tray Maddox Jr. (CSUF) 15.2

Amadou Sow (UCSB) 8.4
Brad Greene (UCI) 7.5
Josh Hall (CSUF) 7.1
Collin Welp (UCI) 6.6
Vincent Lee (CSUF) 6.6

JaQuori McLaughlin (UCSB) 5.2
Darius Brown II (CSUN) 5.0
Mikey Howell (UCSD) 4.4
Keith Smith (CP) 4.2
Isaiah Washington (Beach) 4.1

3-pointers Made
Mark Crowe (CP) 34
Ajare Sanni (UCSB) 30
Tray Maddox Jr. (CSUF) 29
Justin Edler-Davis (CSUB) 27
Wil Tattersall (UCR) 27

Field Goal Percentage
Trever Irish (Beach) .619
Vincent Lee (CSUF) .617
James Jean-Marie (UH) .588
Casdon Jardine (UH) .582
Justin McCall (CSUB) .576

3-point Percentage
Casdon Jardine (UH) .556
Wil Tattersall (UCR) .466
Jadon Jones (Beach) .464
Zyon Pullin (UCR) .452
Justin Webster (UH) .446

This week’s schedule

UC San Diego at CSU Bakersfield, 4:00 PT
UC Irvine at UC Riverside, 4:00 PT
Cal State Fullerton at Cal Poly, 4:00 PT
Long Beach State at UC Davis, 4:00 PT
UC Santa Barbara at Hawai’i, 7:00 HT

UC San Diego at CSU Bakersfield, 4:00 PT
Cal State Fullerton at Cal Poly, 4:00 PT
Long Beach State at UC Davis, 4:00 PT
UC Santa Barbara at Hawai’i, 5:00 HT
UC Irvine at UC Riverside, 9:00 PT

Leave a Response

Login or fill in the fields below to comment. (New user? Register)