UCSB vs Idaho State Preview by a Gaucho fan

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Joined: Fri Dec 21, 2018 3:06 pm

Hey Bengals,

I put together previews of UCSB opponents for the benefit of my fellow Gaucho fans and you can check that out on the Gaucho board: https://www.tapatalk.com/groups/ucsbgau ... ml#p109866

For your benefit, here is an overview of UCSB:
Meet the Gauchos

Season Preview
Year two of the Joe Pasternack era at UCSB has a very different flavor than the first. It was a record setting beginning for the coach as he took a 6 win team all the way to a 23 win season, tying the school record for victories and the Big West Conference record for turnaround. Helping the new coach achieve this success was a very experienced roster with three returning starters and two grad transfers that became starters. Unfortunately, the bulk of that roster has graduated and to repeat the success, he has had to do it with mostly new players. Good thing for UCSB, Pasternack and his staff have worked extremely hard to bring in a very talented mix of freshmen and transfers. And the one returning starter he does have is a great one, leading scorer and First Team All Big West guard Max Heidegger.
Preaseaon prognosticators were not sure what to make of the Gauchos, they lost so much but the talent coming in is the best in the Big West conference. They were picked to finish anywhere from 6th to first. A 7-2 start to the season is a positive indication but it has come against one of the weakest schedules in the country. They held their own vs. a strong Washington team that was picked 2nd in the Pac 12 and who lost on a last second shot on the road to then #1 Gonzaga so at this point it seems fair to say that the Gauchos should compete for the Big West title.

Season summary
Biggest news is that star player, Max Heidegger, has just returned for the most two recent games after sitting out the first part of the season with a concussion. His shot has been off and is hitting at a very low percentage. Additionally, after a 7 game stretch in which the Gauchos played some of the best defense in the country their defense has tanked the past two games. This may be due to Heidegger still getting his legs back. With Max back, UCSB has four new starters from a year ago (it was an entirely new lineup without him). The Gauchos have played one of the weakest schedules in the country and sit at 8-3. When their defense was solid in that 7 game stretch, they went 6-1 with the lone loss by 4 at Washington. Since, they are 1-1 with their last game an 11 point loss at Nebraska Omaha. UCSB started the season as a mediocre three-point shooting team but have been improving in this regard outside of the rusty Heidegger. Three of the starters (Ramsey, McLaughlin and Davis) are coming back after a year off so some early season rustiness is not surprising. Ar’Mond Davis shook off the rust of sitting out a season took over the team scoring lead while also being a high energy rebounder prior to Heidegger’s return.

Coach Joe Pasternack
Coach Pasternack set the bar pretty high his first year with the aforementioned school and conference records. With a three star and a 3-4 star recruit in his 2019 recruiting Coach P is continuing to get it done on the recruiting trail. With so many new pieces this season, it will be a great test of his abilities & system to see if he can match last year’s success. Pasternack comes to UCSB after a successful stint under Sean Miller at the U. Arizona, where he rose to an Associate HC role. He has also been an assistant to Ben Braun at Cal and was a Head Coach at the University of New Orleans, right after the disaster of Hurricane Katrina. He got his start as a student assistant at the University of Indiana under Bob Knight.

The Roster
The Gauchos experienced major turnover and with leading returner Max Heidegger out for much of the season , played an entirely new starting 5 for all but two games this year. Besides the major roster turnover, the biggest difference is depth. UCSB is playing 11 guys regularly with only two starters averaging more than 30 minutes per game and 9 of the 11 averaging 10 mpg or more. The team is still mostly reliant on the starting lineup for scoring with the bench contributing 17% of the offense. When the Gauchos won 6-7 earlier this season, their defense was terrific. But the wheels have fallen off the last two games resulting in one OT victory and a double-digit loss.

Probable Starters
Devearl Ramsey: #4 PG, RS Sophomore. 6’0”, 185lb 11.1 ppg, 3.6 apg, 3.2 rpg, 31 mpg, .424 from three and 83% from the FT line. A very athletic and exciting point guard that can drive, Ramsey is eligible this year after the requisite red shirt season after transferring from Nevada. A highly recruited 3-4* player out of high school, his defense is fantastic and helps UCSB shore up it’s Achilles heel from last year, guarding quick point guards. He has become the most accurate shooter from deep for the Gauchos. A vocal leader, he has been named team captain. His aggressive play both creates opportunities and can lead to turnovers, he has a 1.5 A/TO ratio.

Max Heidegger: #21 Guard, Junior. 6‘3”, 180lb 15.5 ppg, 12-13 FTs, 3-17 from three. Has played just two games after sitting out most of the season with a concussion. The Gauchos star player from a year ago, Max had one of the biggest leaps in improvement in Gaucho hoops history from his freshman to sophomore years. An amazing talent, he is a terrific three pointer shooter with NBA range, setting the school record for threes, and can drive & finish. A very capable ball handler, he can run the point but will play the off-guard position most of the time. Don’t be surprised if his production decreases slightly this season due to the depth of backcourt talent UCSB has this season versus last. His shooting percentages right now are terrible but he has shown no hesitation in continuing to gun and his shot should return.

JaQuori McLaughlin: #3, Guard, RS Sophomore 6’4, 190lb 11.7 ppg, 3.8 apg, 39% from three, 32 mpg. Another transfer, McLaughlin comes to UCSB from Oregon State where he set the freshman record for three pointers made. He can play either guard position. He is third on the team in scoring and is second in assists but gets most praise from Coach Pasternack for his defense. He held the nation’s leader in assists (at that time), Marcuss Graves of Sacramento State to just 1 assist against 5 TOs. As the starting shooting guard and the main back-up point, he leads the team in minutes played and is second in FT attempts. After a bit of a slow shooting start, he was on fire vs. Rice, hitting 6-8 from deep, 7-10 overall.

Ar’Mond Davis: #1 Wing, 15 ppg, 5.5 rpg, 30% from three, 29 mpg. Grad Transfer (Alabama). 6‘6”, 190lb Davis sat out last year with an injury after playing the 6th man role at Alabama his junior year. Prior, he excelled at the College of Southern Idaho, earning a top 5 ranking at the JC level. He is athletic and loves to score but has been doing a good job on the boards too. After a couple clunkers to start the season, he became the go-to guy for the Gauchos when Heidegger was out and is second on the team in scoring. He is high energy on the rebounding front and is second on the team in that category. His FG% is improving as the season progresses.

Amadou Sow: #12 Forward, Freshman, 6’9”, 235lb 9.3 ppg, 6.5 rbg. 22mpg One of the more highly rated recruits in Gaucho history, Sow turned down the likes of Cal, Illinois and Wichita State to come to UCSB. The athletic freshman demonstrated range to outside the arc in high school but has stuck to patrolling the paint at UCSB. It is early and at times he has played like a freshman and at times he looks like an all-conference player. The only true big that starts.

Main Reserves
Jarriese Blackmon: #2 Forward, Senior, 6’7”, 220lb 5.1 ppg, 4.8 rbg, 1.2 blocks pg. 19 mpg Blackmon’s high energy and athleticism have been what has earned him the starting role with Heidegger out with a concussion. He is coming off the bench now that Heidegger is back but is still playing significant minutes. Blackmon leads the team in blocks and is third in rebounding. He had four steals vs. Rice. He has impressed all the Gaucho fans with just how much he has improved in all facets of his game over last year. He has some decent moves within the arc and is shooting 52% from the field.

Jay Nagle: #5 Wing, Freshman. 6’8”, 205lb 3.9 ppg, 2.8 rpg, 46% from three The son of basketball coach, Nagle was the first HS recruit signed by Pasternack and has grown 2 inches since he signed. A terrific outside shooter but not the quickest or best athlete, he is still effective on defense with high basketball IQ. Has seen his role increase as the season has progressed and is now averaging 17 mpg. Possibly the second best outside shooter after Heidegger but does not look for a shot yet.

Christian Terrell: #23 Wing, Junior, 6’5”, 200lb 3.1 ppg. 14 mpg. “CT” is said to be the best athlete on the team with great hops and is considered a very good defender. He does not have great range but he has taken the role of facilitator and taking only high percentage shots resulting in a 57% fg

Robinson Idehen: #35 F/C, Sophomore, 6’10”, 230lb 4.4 ppg, 2.6 rpg. 11.5 mpg A JC transfer, after a slow start, he is showing improvement and is the first big off the bench.

Sekou Toure: #0 Guard, Freshman, 6’5”, 185lb 4.4 ppg, 2.5 rbg 9 mpg Lightly recruited, Toure made great strides his senior year at Prolific Prep where Sow also attended, averaging 16ppg and 8 boards; UCSB may have got a steal in him. What impresses most though is his defense which alone has earned him PT right off the bat. He is showing rapid improvement and was incredible in getting to the line vs. Sacramento State with 10 FT attempts in only 10 minutes of play.

Limited Roles
Ami Lakoju: #14 Center, Senior, 6’9” 260lb, 6 mpg A physical presence, Ami has been prone to foul trouble over his career and is still struggling with that this season. Has seen his minutes replaced by Idehen & Blackmon.
Zach Moore: #34 Guard, RS Junior. 6’5”, 210lb 8 mpg. A starter at Seattle before transferring to UCSB, Moore averaged about 11ppg and made 74 threes his sophomore year for the Redhawks. Provides another outside threat, is 3-5 from deep this season. He has not played since the return of Heidegger.

None at this time.

About UCSB

Record vs. Idaho State: UCSB leads the series 3-2. The teams have not played since 1977, when the Bengals walloped the Gauchos 100-68 in Pocatello.

Hoops history. UCSB has been an above-average mid-major the past 25 years but has not been able to break through with a type of season that would garner national attention. Its hey-day was in the late 80s/early 90s when the Big West conference rivaled the then Pac 10 for hoops superiority in the West. At that time, UNLV was a power and UCSB had a couple major upsets of the Rebels when they were ranked in the top 5 of the country. The Gauchos were the last team to beat UNLV before the Rebels went on to win the National Championship in 1990. Those Rebels would not lose again until to Duke in the Final Four the following year. Also in 1990, the Gauchos won their only NCAA tournament game ever, defeating Houston in the first found before losing to top seed Michigan State by 3. During this time the crowds were among the best in the country and the Campus Events Center earned the nick-name of “The Thunderdome.” Sadly, present-day crowds make a mockery of that name. Under previous coach Bob Williams, who led the program for 19 years, the Gauchos got to the NCAA tournament three times and the NIT twice, never winning a game. Our most famous basketball alum is Brian Shaw who won three NBA championships with the Lakers in the early 2000s and is back with the Lakers as Associate HC.

Gauchos in the NBA
James Nunnally, 2012, a deep bench reserve forward for the Minnesota Timberwolves
Alan Williams, 2015, school’s all-time rebounding leader, under the new NBA Two-Way contract with the Brooklyn Nets and formerly with the Phoenix Suns. He is currently tied for the league lead in rebounds in the G-League while averaging 19.5 ppg.

The School: Once more known as a party school (and it certainly was when I was there way back when!), it has grown to become one of the best universities in the country, consistently in the top 40 of the school ratings. You’ll be hard pressed to find a more beautiful campus location, surrounded on two sides by the Pacific Ocean and the Santa Ynez mountains behind. It is more sedate now but still has the surf and bikinis in January. Although in a bit of a lull right now, the soccer team has had a lot of success, winning the National Championship in 2006 and created a fantastic following as the school led the country in attendance for more than 10 consecutive years. The school responded by investing into their stadium and UCSB just hosted their second College Cup (Final 4) this December.
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