Tuesday, November 23, 2010

On to Bakersfield Wednesday night

Cal St. Bakersfield athletics is a WAC wannabee (we appreciate their good taste) and the next opponent for San Jose State University hoops. The Spartans travel south and east to take on the Roadrunners on Wednesday night at 7 p.m. The game will be played at the on-campus Icardo Center, not the usual Rabobank Arena.

BK is 2-2 having won at Sacramento and at Pepperdine while falling to Santa Clara on the road and Southern Utah at home. Guards Donavan Bragg and Alex Johnson (twice) plus wing Stephon Carter have been the Roadrunner high scorers in each contest.

The very athletic Carter leads the team in scoring at 16.5 points per game while Johnson is second at 15.3. Donavan Bragg checks in at 11.8 points a contest. Carter is shootng 47% this season, Johnson 37% and Bragg 33%. Keep in mind that of Johnson's 45 shot attempts, 36 have come from long distance -- in fact, he's shooting better beyond the three-point line (39%) than overall.

What is also interesting is that while Bakersfield is shooting slightly better than it's collective opponents -- 41% to 40% -- the Roadrunners have 13 less assists than opposing teams. This generally indicates more one-on-one play and dribble-driving to shoot rather than kick out.

The other significant statistic is the Roadrunners are garnering six less rebounds a game than opponents. 6-foot-6 junior college newcomer Rashad Savage is the top BK boardman at 11.5 a game with 5-10 Alex Johnson next. Yes, you read that correctly.

Also, let's see who takes on the 5-10 Johnson as a defender. Size indicates it will be freshman Keith Shamburger, with Adrian Oliver and Justin Graham matching up with Carter and Bragg.

Looking in the notes of earlier games, there is no indication of BK pressing opponents but the athleticism is there to do so. However, the big three of Carter, Johnson and Bragg are playing at least 30 minutes a game and requiring extra effort may take away proficiency in other areas.

KSJS (90.5 FM, San Jose) originates San Jose State University basketball broadcasts and Mike Chisholm will call the play-by-play. Air time for the Cal State Bakersfield game is 6:30 p.m.

The Bakersfield Starting Five

* 5-foot-10 Alex Johnson - point
* 6-foot-3 Donavan Bragg - two guard
* 6-foot-3 Stephon Carter - wing
* 6-foot-6 Rashad Savage - frontcourt

Either 6-foot-10 Cory Brown or 6-foot-8 Donald Johnson will also start upfront.

It's also worth noting that CSUB is now a fully-fledged D-1 school and eligible for post-season play.

The Roadrunner roster (by position, alphabetized)

Donavan Bragg G 6-3 196 Sr.
Lance Bailey G 6-2 195 Fr.
Reynaul Baker G 6-2 175 Fr.
Stephon Carter G 6-3 180 So.
Robert Hayes G 5-10 186 Jr.
Cody Kale G 6-3 190 Fr.
Alex Johnson G 5-10 170 Jr.
Ivan Matip G 6-3 205 Fr.

James Albright F 6-6 212 So.
Donald Johnson F 6-8 215 Jr.
Kregg Jones F 6-8 235 Fr.
De'Aundray Robinson F 6-5 210 Fr.
Rashad Savage F 6-6 220 Jr.

Cory Brown C 6-10 223 Sr.

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