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UC Santa Barbara 2010 NCAA Tournament Preview

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UC Santa Barbara Gauchos - Big West Conference (20-9, 12-4)

Seed: #15 - Midwest Region

Big Wins: 11/17 Weber State (66-57), 1/10 Pacific (68-67), 2/4 at Pacific (61-48)

Bad Losses: 1/2 at UC Irvine (55-57), 1/30 at Cal State Northridge (69-76), 2/27 at Cal Poly (57-60)

Last NCAA Appearance: 2002, First Round loss to Arizona

Coach: Bob Williams (0-1 in 1 NCAA appearance)



Probable UC Santa Barbara Starters:

  • Will Brew, Sophomore, Guard, 4.9 ppg, 2.6 apg

  • Jordan Weiner, Junior, Guard, 3.0 ppg, 1.0 apg

  • Orlando Johnson, Sophomore, Guard, 17.9 ppg, 2.3 apg, 5.4 rpg

  • James Nunnally, Sophomore, Forward, 15.0 ppg, 5.7 rpg

  • Jaime Serna, Sophomore, Forward, 8.0 ppg, 4.2 rpg

 

Key UC Santa Barbara Roleplayers:

  • Justin Joyner, Junior, Guard, 0.6 ppg, 2.1 apg

  • Jon Pastorek, Junior, Forward, 2.2 ppg, 2.2 rpg

  • James Powell, Senior, Guard, 9.4 ppg, 1.4 apg

  • Greg Somogyi, Sophomore, Center, 2.4 ppg, 2.6 rpg, 1.3 bpg

 

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Why The Gauchos Can Surprise:
UC Santa Barbara has four capable scorers. Most teams have no choice but to concentrate on defending guard Orlando Johnson and forward James Nunnally. Despite being listed as a guard and a forward, both are 6-5 and have very similar games. Both are capable outside shooters, but it is Nunnally who stretches out the defense as a power forward and connects on an impressive 46.5 percent of his attempts from long range. Both will drive to the basket and finish effectively. Having two versatile big time scorers has made the Gauchos offense very difficult to stop.

James Powell and Jaime Serna are the other consistent scoring threats. Powell is a part-time starter who does most of his damage from beyond the arc. If his shot is not falling, Powell will not give the team much offense. Serna is the big guy under the basket and the team’s most dominating interior scorer.

 

Why The Gauchos Can Disappoint:
However, Serna only averages 4.2 rebounds per game and Coach Bob Williams’ team is consistently outrebounded. Serna, a 6-7 sophomore, is a tough player, but is just not that effective on the glass. Jon Pastorek, a 6-10 junior, is the most experienced option, but he averages less than a dozen minutes per game. The most intriguing option is 7-3 center Greg Somogyi. He has not progressed as much during his sophomore campaign as the team had hoped, but he is getting there. When given the opportunity, Somogyi has been a productive rebounder and a superb defender. Just having him stand under the basket makes a big difference for the entire defense.

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Who To Watch for UCSB:
Will Brew is back at the starting point guard position after being forced into action as a freshman. He does not need to be a scorer, and he is not, but he has done a better job setting up his teammates and keeping the turnovers down. There is still room for improvement, but Brew is a capable point guard and a solid defender. The on again, off again return of Justin Joyner has solidified the point guard position. Joyner started during the 2006-2007 and the 2007-2008 campaigns, but missed all of last season. His return has been a slow process, but if he is healthy, he is a great ballhandler. In early February Joyner dished out eight assists in just 15 minutes of play in a win against UC Davis. Games like that will give UCSB the luxury of having a real backup point guard for Brew and help keep the turnovers at a respectable level.

 

UC Santa Barbara By the Numbers:

Scoring Offense: 67.9 (202nd in nation, 6th in conference)

Scoring Defense: 65.9 (110, 3)

Field-Goal Percentage: 44.6 (117, 2)

Field-Goal Defense: 41.9 (107, 3)

Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 6.9 (88, 1)

Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 37.8 (42, 1)

Free-Throw Percentage: 66.9 (230, 5)

Rebound Margin: -2.4 (262, 9)

Assists Per Game: 13.8 (112, 2)

Turnovers Per Game: 15.5 (289, 8)

 

Joel’s Bracket Says: First Round loss to Ohio State

 

By Joel Welser
CollegeSports-fans.com Senior Basketball Writer

 

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