May 25, 2019

Fresno State Men’s Basketball Preview

Fresno State Bulldogs (2-1) at Cal-State Bakersfield Roadrunners (0-2)

Tip-off: Saturday, 7 p.m. at Rabobank Arena (Baskersfield, Calif.)
Series Record: CSU Bakerfield leads 3-2
Last Meeting: 1978 – Fresno State won 61-50

Breakdown: Bulldogs

The Bulldogs are leaving town for their first road game of the season Saturday, visiting Cal-State Bakersfield.

Fresno State is looking to bounce back from a 89-72 defeat to San Diego State, the defending Mountain West Conference champions, on the last day of the World Vision Classic on Sunday at the Save Mart Center.

Senior Kevin Bell led the Bulldogs with 25 points and tied a career best. Dwight O’Neil added 15 points.

Bell and O’Neill were both named to the all-tournament team, with San Diego State’s Kyle Spain earning MVP honors.

The host Bulldogs went 2-1 in the tournament, with wins against Portland and Liberty on the first two nights.

In the Bulldog’s season opener against Portland, Fresno State hit 13 of the 26 3-pointers the team took.

Fresno State has had limited success on the road in recent history.

Last season, Fresno State went 7-6 on the road (0-1 on neutral courts).

The Bulldogs will try and start its 2007-08 road schedule in the win column against the Roadrunners.

Look for the Bulldogs to try and find a presence in the post, one of the key factors in its loss to San Diego State. Against the Aztecs, Fresno State was out-rebounded 38-24, a statistic that needs to improve this season.

Breakdown: Roadrunners

Cal-State Bakersfield is making the jump to from Division-II to D-I, and Saturday will be the first time the Roadrunners will play in front of their own fans at that level.

Not only are the Roadrunners now playing in the higher division, they have a schedule that has quality opponents. Cal-State Bakersfield will play only fellow D-I teams this season and has 10 games against opponents with at least 20 victories last season, Fresno State being one of them.

Cal-State Bakersfield is 0-2 this season, and is still looking for their first victory as a D-I program. They will have to start winning soon if they want to finish with a winning record for a 27th straight season.

Saturday’s contest might be the first in a long series between the two. The two teams are now at the same level and the schools are separated by about 100 miles, the closest D-I school to Fresno State.

Be on the lookout for Cal-State Bakersfield guard Terrence Johns. In the Roadrunners’ 92-75 loss at Cal-State Fullerton, Johns recorded a double double with 26 points and 10 rebounds.

Like the Bulldogs, the Roadrunners will take their share of shots from behind the 3-point line. Cal-State Bakersfield took 20 against the Titans, making 10.

Saturday’s winner might be the team that hits the most.

Collegian Players to Watch

Fresno State Guard Kevin Bell
• Bell was named to the all-tournament team last weekend, scoring 25 points against San Diego State.
Bakersfield Guard Terrence Johns
• Johns is averaging 22.5 points per game for the Roadrunners to go with 5.5 rebounds.

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