May 12, 2009
FULLERTON, CA -
BATTER UP: The "second season" for the Cal State Fullerton softball team begins this weekend as the Titans head to Tempe, Ariz., for the 2009 NCAA Tournament hosted by Arizona State beginning on Friday (May 15) and continuing through Sunday (May 17). The Titans, making their fifth consecutive NCAA Tournament and 25th NCAA Regional appearance overall, are the No. 3 seed and will open postseason play at Farrington Stadium on Friday against No. 2-seeded LSU at 2:30 p.m. PDT. The No. 10-national seeded Sun Devils and No. 4 seed San Diego State will meet at 5:30 p.m. PDT in the second game of the day. The complete schedule for the regional is listed below:
2009 NCAA TOURNAMENT - TEMPE REGIONAL SCHEDULE
Friday (May 15)
GAME 1: \#3 Cal State Fullerton (V) vs. \#2 LSU (H) - 2:30 p.m. PDT
GAME 2: \#4 San Diego State (V) vs. \#1 Arizona State (H) - 5 p.m. PDT
Saturday (May 16)
GAME 3: Winner G1 vs. Winner G2 - 3 p.m. PDT
GAME 4: Loser G1 vs. Loser G2 - 5:30 p.m. PDT
GAME 5: Loser G3 vs. Winner G4 - 8 p.m. PDT
Sunday (May 17)
GAME 6: Winner G3 vs. Winner G5 - 2:30 p.m. PDT
GAME 7: Winner G6 vs. Loser G6 - 5 p.m. PDT (if needed...)
HI, MOM!!!: For the third consecutive season, Cal State Fullerton will share the national television spotlight as all six (or seven) games from Farrington Stadium in Tempe will be televised on ESPNU. The Titans were featured on national television for, what was believed to be, the first time in the history of the program in 2007 as they travelled to Tucson to take on Arizona in the super regional round. Last season, both of Fullerton's games at the UCLA regional were televised. However, the spotlight of national television has been harsh as the Titans are looking for their first televised win after going 0-4 in their first two appearances.
I'M SUPER, THANKS FOR ASKING: Should Cal State Fullerton win the regional, the Titans will meet the winner of the Norman regional which features host and No. 7 national seeded Oklahoma, North Dakota State, Tulsa, and Arkansas.
CAN YOU HEAR ME NOW?: Fans unable to make the trip to Tempe this weekend can also tune in for the live audio stream as veteran Cal State Fullerton play-by-play announcer Mike Martinez will have the call for all Titan games this weekend in NCAA Regional play. Log on to FullertonTitans.com and click the microphone logo on the right-hand side of the screen to access the links.
I NEED STATS, STAT!: Live stats for every game from the Tempe Regional will be available on both Arizona State's website at www.thesundevils.com and on the Cal State Fullerton softball schedule page at FullertonTitans.com.
IN THE POLLS: Arizona State is ranked as high as No. 9 in the nation according to this week's USA Today/NFCA coaches poll and stands at No. 12 in the ESPN.com/USA Softball coaches top 25... LSU is ranked No. 23 by both the NFCA and USA Softball.... San Diego State is receiving votes in both polls... Cal State Fullerton is not listed in the final regular season polls that were released on Tuesday (May 12).
TITANS IN THE POSTSEASON: Cal State Fullerton is making its fifth consecutive NCAA regional appearance and the 27th postseason appearance in the 30-year history of the program (including AIAW appearances in 1980 and 1981). The 2009 tournament will mark the team's 25th NCAA regional berth in 28 tries. The Titans are 68-54 all-time in postseason play since the program's inception in 1980, including a 56-48 mark in NCAA play. Fullerton is 40-36 in regional action, 0-2 in the super regional round, and 16-10 at the Women's College World Series - including the 1986 NCAA Championship. The Titans are 15-17 in the postseason under 10th-year head coach Michelle Gromacki, who was the starting catcher on Fullerton's 1986 NCAA championship squad.
SCOUTING THE TIGERS: LSU enters the postseason with a 32-16-1 overall record and a 15-10-1 mark in conference play to finish second in the SEC Western Division - five games behind Alabama (21-6)... The Tigers won five of their last six to end the regular season before falling to Tennessee in the quarterfinals of the conference tournament... Kirsten Shortridge leads the team offensively, batting .429 with 36 runs scored, three home runs and 23 RBI... Cody Trahan (11-6, 2.31 ERA) and Brittany Mack (11-4, 2.36 ERA) have split the starting duties in the circle for the most part this season as the LSU staff has held opponents to a .218 average.
SERIES NOTES: LSU leads the all-time series with Cal State Fullerton, 2-1, but all three contests have been decided by a single run... Friday's game will be the first postseason meeting between the two squads... The Titans' only win in the series came in 2003 as they posted a 7-6 victory at the NFCA Leadoff Classic in Columbus, Ga., avenging an earlier 4-3 loss to the Tigers at the Louisville Slugger Desert Classic in Las Vegas that year... LSU won the last meeting between the two teams by a 3-2 score in eight innings at the 2008 Palm Springs Classic... all three meetings have come on neutral fields.
SCOUTING THE SUN DEVILS: The defending NCAA National Champions enter the 2009 postseason with a 40-16 overall record and a 10-11 mark in Pacific-10 Conference play for sixth place out of eight teams... The Sun Devils come in having lost seven of their final 10 contests in conference play, but ended on a high note, taking a pair from Oregon last weekend by the scores of 5-1 in both games... ASU is 30-5 on the turf at Farrington Stadium this season... Big hitter Katie Cochran leads the team offensively, batting .422 with 20 home runs and 58 RBI while scoring 59 runs... ASU as a team is batting .323 and features nine regulars batting better than .300... Hillary Bach is the ace in the circle for the Sun Devils, posting a 24-9 record and a 3.23 ERA... The pitching staff is holding opponents to a .261 average this season and has posted 11 shutouts.
SERIES NOTES: Cal State Fullerton leads the all-time series with the Sun Devils, 24-19, but has lost the last three straight contests in a series that hasn't been played since 2007... The two teams have met twice in the postseason with the Titans posting a 2-0 win at the 1980 WAIAW Regionals while ASU handed Fullerton a 2-0 loss at the 1982 Women's College World Series opener... Fullerton is just 9-9 on ASU's home field... the two teams last met at the 2007 Judi Garman Classic as the Sun Devils posted a 4-1 win in nine innings... The Titans' last win in the series came in 2002 at the then-named Kia Klassic as Fullerton downed ASU, 7-5, in the semifinals of the tournament en route to clinching the title.
SCOUTING THE AZTECS: San Diego State enters the weekend with a 33-18 overall record and a 10-5 mark in Mountain West Conference play to finish second behind BYU (12-2)... The Aztecs have lost four of their last six entering the postseason with four of those games decided by two runs or fewer... Erin Floros leads the team offensively, batting .358 with four home runs and 30 RBI while teammates Tonye McCorkle and Brittany Knudsen are each batting .312 on the year... the duo of Bailey Micetich (19-6, 1.49 ERA) and Samantha Beasley (14-12, 1.98 ERA) have been stifling in the circle combining for 18 shutouts this season and holding opponents to a .217 batting average on the year... the pair has combined to strike out 400 batters this season.
SERIES NOTES: Cal State Fullerton leads the all-time series with San Diego State, 45-14, but the Aztecs have won the last four straight after sweeping a home-and-home doubleheader this season by the scores of 6-0 and 3-0 and single-game wins in 2007 (2-1 in nine innings) and 2006 (3-2 in eight innings)... Fullerton's last win in the series came in 2006, posting an 8-0 victory in the second game of a doubleheader in San Diego... The Titans are 1-2 against the Aztecs on neutral fields... Any meetings this weekend will be the first in the postseason between the two schools.
PREVIOUSLY ON "THE REGIONALS": Cal State Fullerton went 0-2 in NCAA Tournament play a season ago, falling to host UCLA, 8-3, in the opener and Purdue, 4-3, to go winless at an NCAA Regional for the fourth time in 24 postseason appearances and the first since 1993. The Titans are just two seasons removed from becoming the first school from the Big West to win a regional championship and advance to the NCAA Super Regional round since the format was introduced in 2005.
VERSUS RANKED TEAMS IN 2009: Cal State Fullerton is a combined 8-13 in 21 games against teams that were either nationally ranked or receiving votes in the USA Today/NFCA or ESPN.com/USA Softball coaches polls in 2009. The Titans have posted wins over the likes of Oregon, NC State, Nebraska, Texas, Oklahoma, Washington, and Cal Poly (twice) this season while facing nine teams that were nationally ranked at the time of the game. Offensively, junior Francesca Gonzales, in her first season at the Division I level, leads the team with a .274 average against ranked squads this season to go with a pair of home runs and six RBI. Sophomore Torrie Anderson is hitting just .230 against those powerhouses, but has slugged five home runs and driven in 14 in those contests while scoring nine times.
VERSUS THE FIELD: Among its regional opposition, the Titans have faced only one of the four teams in Tempe this weekend, going 0-2 in a home-and-home doubleheader with San Diego State on March 20-21. Overall, Cal State Fullerton prepped for the postseason well, facing 15 of the 64 teams in the tournament, going 7-13 against those squads with notable wins over No. 3 national seed Washington and national No. 7 seed Oklahoma. The Titans also posted wins over Cal Poly (twice), Nebraska, Texas, and Long Beach State.
ANDERSON CLAIMS BIG WEST'S FINAL WEEKLY HONOR: Cal State Fullerton sophomore outfielder Torrie Anderson was named the Big West Conference's final player of the week for the 2009 season after powering the Titans' offense to a sweep of UC Santa Barbara. Anderson hit .545 (6-for-11) on the weekend with a home run (which proved to be the game-winner in the series opener), two doubles, three runs scored, four RBI, and a pair of walks. She slugged 1.000 for the weekend and tallied a .615 on base percentage for the series to help Fullerton to a second-place conference finish and its fifth consecutive NCAA Tournament berth.
SIX TITANS NAMED ALL-BIG WEST CONFERENCE: Three Cal State Fullerton softball players were named to the All-Big West First Team to headline a group of six Titans on the conference honor roll as the league announced its 2009 all-conference honors on Tuesday afternoon (May 12).
Senior Lauren Lupinetti along with sophomores Ari Cervantes and Torrie Anderson earned first-team laurels, senior Courtney Martinez was a second-team selection, while freshman Krystal Heinle and junior Francesca Gonzales were honorable mention choices.
The three first team selections are the most for Fullerton since the coaches selected four Titans in 2007 and increased the school's total to 77 in the history of the program - the most of any school in Big West history.
For Lupinetti, it was her third all-conference honor in as many seasons, but her first selection to the league's first team. The other five Titans all earned all-conference recognition for the first time in their careers.
For the complete 2009 All-Big West teams, please click here.
LIVIN' IN THE WILD, WILD (BIG) WEST: Cal State Fullerton is one of three Big West Conference schools to advance to the postseason as league champion Cal Poly will travel to Palo Alto for regional play hosted by No. 8 national seed Stanford while third-place Long Beach State makes the short hop to Westwood for regional play hosted by No. 2 national seed UCLA. The Mustangs open against Nevada (with Pacific Coast Softball Conference champion Portland State being the fourth team at the Stanford regional) while the 49ers open against the host Bruins (and are joined by Fresno State and UNLV). The 2009 season marked the 25th consecutive year that the Big West Conference has sent multiple teams to the NCAA Tournament.
CLASH OF THE (FORMER) TITANS: Ring the bell... round three may be in order. Former Cal State Fullerton players-turned head coaches could possibly meet sometime this weekend as Cal State Fullerton head coach Michelle Gromacki and San Diego State head coach Kathy Van Wyk could meet for the third time this season. Van Wyk was a pitcher on the 1982 Titans' squad that finished third at the Women's College World Series, posting a 35-1 record in the circle and a 0.18 ERA en route to the school's first Broderick Award and All-America honors. Van Wyk also served as an assistant coach with Cal State Fullerton from 1983-87 and again from 1991-94 before taking the reins of the Aztecs' program. Gromacki was a three-year letterwinner for the Titans from 1985-87 and was the starting catcher on the school's 1986 NCAA National Championship team along with current Texas head coach Connie Clark. Gromacki and Van Wyk have already met twice this season with the latter leading 7-5 in the all-time head-to-head clashes as head coaches.
WINNER, WINNER, CHICKEN DINNER: Cal State Fullerton's 29 victories this season surpassed last year's 27 wins and are the most since the 2007 team finished with 38 victories en route to the NCAA Super Regional round. The Titans' 17 conference victories also surpassed last season's 11-10 mark and are the most for Cal State Fullerton since the Titans set a Big West Conference record for league winning percentage with a .952 mark and a 20-1 conference record in 2003.
ARI'S STREAK MOVES TO SEVEN: When she's not shutting down the opposition in the circle, sophomore Ari Cervantes has been causing fits to opposing pitchers as of late as she extended her hitting streak to seven straight games with her three hits last weekend against UC Santa Barbara. During her streak, which is tied with a similar string by teammate Lauren Lupinetti for the best on the squad this season, Cervantes is hitting .375 (9-for-24) since the opener of the series with UC Davis on April 10 with four runs scored and seven RBI to go with a pair of doubles and her first home run of the season.
LUCKY SEVEN: Thanks to a three-game sweep of UC Santa Barbara last weekend, Cal State Fullerton extended its winning streak to seven games - the second time that the Titans have rolled a "lucky seven" in the win column this season. Fullerton also won seven straight from April 5-19, which included sweeps over league rivals UC Davis and Pacific. During their current winning streak, the Titans are batting .304 as a team while outscoring opponents by a 29-14 count. The pitching staff has also done well, posting a 1.51 ERA and allowing just 40 hits in 51 innings, holding the opposition to a .215 average.
"FINISH THEM!": Cal State Fullerton closed out the regular season as one of the hottest teams in the country, winning 14 of its final 16 games en route to a 29-19 overall record. During that stretch, the team hit a robust .300 while outscoring the opposition by a 73-36 mark. Three regulars (Courtney Martinez, Torrie Anderson, and Francesca Gonzales) hit better than .340 in that 16-game stretch while Ari Cervantes (9-1, 1.32 ERA) and Krystal Heinle (5-1, 1.89 ERA) combined to hold opponents to a .237 average from the circle.
CLOSING IN ON THE BIG 2-0: With a victory in the circle this postseason, Ari Cervantes (who coincidentally turned the big 2-0 herself back on May 4) will become the 24th 20-game winner in the history of the program and the first since Candice Baker won 21 games for the Titans in 2007. It's a big jump for the sophomore righthander, who appeared in just 11 games (three starts) as a freshman last season, posting an 0-1 record and a 6.30 ERA.
I'M HERE TO HELP: Freshman Krystal Heinle earned her first career save in Sunday's regular season finale against UC Santa Barbara, getting the final two outs and stranding the tying run in scoring position to secure Fullerton's 6-5 victory and the series sweep. She was just returning the favor for fellow righthander Ari Cervantes, who earned her third save of the season in game two of the series, pitching the final inning of the Titans' 2-1 extra-inning win.
HIGH ON HEINLE: Freshman righthander Krystal Heinle has been a big part of Cal State Fullerton's success in the final month of the regular season, winning her last three straight starts and five of her last six starts Since April 10. Heinle is 5-1 over her last seven appearances (including her first career save in the regular season finale against UC Santa Barbara on Sunday) with a 1.89 ERA, striking out 28 batters and holding the opposition to a paltry .182 average. All seven of those appearances have been decided by two runs or fewer - including five one-run victories in favor of the Titans.
KRYSTAL CLEAR: Heinle has also turned things up a notch in the circle since the start of Big West Conference play, posting a 6-2 mark in league action with a 1.64 ERA and a .175 average against in nine appearances.
TWO FOR 10: No, it's not the latest deal from your local pizza joint. Sophomore Torrie Anderson slugged her 10th home run of the season in the series opener against UC Santa Barbara last weekend, joining teammate Francesca Gonzales atop the heap this season. Anderson and Gonzales give the Titans two players with double digit home runs for the first time since 2006 when Ashley Van Boxmeer and Katie Gollhardt slugged 13 and 10 home runs, respectively.
YARD WORK: Anderson's home run was the 39th round-tripper hit this season by the Titans, surpassing last season's total of 34 and ranking eighth on the school's single-season list.
"SENIOR" MOMENT: Cal State Fullerton's 6-5 victory over UC Santa Barbara to close out the regular season marked the Titans' third win on "Senior Day" this season. Fullerton won its ninth "Senior Day" game in 10 chances under Head Coach Michelle Gromacki on May 3 against Cal State Northridge and spoiled Long Beach State's salute to its seniors on April 26 with a 2-0 victory.
BREAK OUT THE BROOMS: Cal State Fullerton's sweep of of UC Santa Barbara to close out the regular season was the Titans' fourth sweep of a conference opponent after doing the same to UC Davis (April 10-11) on the road and both Pacific (April 18-19) and Cal State Northridge (May 2-3) at home this season. Fullerton won six of its seven Big West series in 2009, with the lone blemish being a 2-1 series loss to Long Beach State on April 25-26. The four conference series sweeps are the most since 2007, when the Titans also swept four of their six conference opponents.
TOUCH `EM ALL TITANS: The Fullerton lineup continues to generate power this season as the Titans remain atop the Big West leaderboards with their 39 long balls entering this week's games - besting second place Cal Poly by eight home runs. As a team, Fullerton ranks No. 45 in the nation with 0.81 home runs per contest while, individually, three Titans rank among the Big West's leaders: junior Francesca Gonzales and sophomore Torrie Anderson are tied for second in the league with 10 apiece (two of only three players in the league in double digits, joining Cal Poly's Krysten Cary) and senior Courtney Martinez is in a three-way tie for 10th with five.
PERFECT 10: Junior Francesca Gonzales slugged her 10th home run of the season against Long Beach State on April 25, becoming the first Titan to hit double digits in home runs since Jessica Doucette slugged 11 home runs in 2007.
NEW GAME, DIFFERENT HERO: In Fullerton's 29 victories this season, the Titans have had nine different players account for the game-winning RBI while 13 different Fullerton baserunners have been in the right place at the right time to come around to score the game-winning run.
BETCHA CAN'T SCORE JUST ONE: Fullerton has made a habit of having big innings in 2009, scoring multiple runs in 37 of a possible 91 scoring innings - a 41 percent clip.
"EXTRA" EFFORT IN BIG WEST PLAY: The Titans' offense has gone the extra mile (or 60 feet if you will) since the start of Big West play, crushing a league-best 49 extra base hits - including a league-high 31 doubles and 17 home runs. Long Beach State is a distant second in that category with 33 hits for extra bases followed by Cal Poly (31), UC Davis (29) and UC Riverside (29).
THERE IS NO DEFENSE FOR THAT: Of Cal State Fullerton's last 13 victories, eight have been thanks to home runs. Of the Titans' 29 victories overall this season, 12 have come via the long ball - including six solo shots - and have been hit by five different players. Overall this season, Fullerton is 21-7 when they hit a home run.
"LET'S GROOVE TONIGHT": Since starting the season with just five wins in their first 16 games, the Titans have found their winning groove, currently riding a seven-game winning streak and posting a 24-8 record over their last 32 games. In that stretch, Fullerton is hitting .272 as a team while holding an 129-87 scoring advantage and slugging 27 home runs. The pitching staff has also gotten stronger, posting a 1.85 ERA (including an 17-5 mark and a 1.71 ERA by Ari Cervantes) and holding opponents to a .225 batting average.
TURN TWO: Cal State Fullerton's defense has been quite handy at getting their pitchers out of jams, ranking second in the Big West Conference with 22 double plays turned this season. The Titans are also among the nation's best at "turning two," standing at No. 16 in the nation with 0.46 per game and are tied for 20th with their 22 turned overall.
WHAT ARE YOU LOOKING AT?: Fullerton's pitching staff ranks third in the league in strikeouts looking with 81 on the season, trailing only Pacific (83) and Long Beach State (82) in that category. Sophomore Ari Cervantes ranks second in the league individually, as 49 of her 117 strikeout victims left with the bat on their shoulder, while Heinle is tied for seventh in the Big West with 31 batters caught staring this season. Both hurlers also rank among the league's top 10 in strikeouts overall with Cervantes standing fifth entering the week and Heinle ninth with 91 overall.
"CAVEAT CURSOR": Alright... our Latin is a little rusty so, scholars, please bear with us. Lupinetti has also found a rhythm behind the plate defensively, throwing out six of the last eight runners trying to steal against her and 12 of her last 25 (48 percent) overall. This coming after a slow start that saw her erase just one of the first 31 would-be base stealers against her this season.
MARTINEZ BRUISES HER WAY TO THIRD: Senior Courtney Martinez was hit by a pitch for the 28th time in her career at UC Davis, moving her into sole possession of fourth on the school's all-time list, just one shy of Gina Oaks (2000-03) in third place. Lauren Lupinetti is also among the school's top 10 list, ranking sixth with 26 in her career.
MILESTONE ACHIEVED: Cal State Fullerton Head Coach Michelle Gromacki became just the fifth coach in the history of the Big West Conference to reach 350 career victories as a member of the league. Now in her 10th season, Gromacki joins the likes of current and former colleagues Pete Manarino (who won a record 791 games at the helm of Long Beach State), Cal State Fullerton's own Judi Garman (581 wins), current Pacific head coach Brian Kolze (519 wins), and former UNLV coach Shan McDonald (350).
MILESTONE... PART DEUX: With the Titans' victory in the series finale against Long Beach State on April 26, head coach Michelle Gromacki became the fifth coach in Big West history to win at least 350 games overall and reach 150 conference victories. Gromacki, who won her 350th career game earlier this year on March 28 against Cal Poly, joins former Long Beach State skipper Pete Manarino (791/393), former Fullerton Hall of Fame Head Coach Judi Garman (581/302), current Pacific head coach Brian Kolze (519/210), and former UNLV head coach Shan McDonald (350/190) on that list.
MERCY ME: Cal State Fullerton has played extra-inning games four times this season, but has yet to break out the whoopin' sticks and post a run-rule victory in 2009. The Titans, whose only shortened game this season was a five-inning win over Indiana due to rain, haven't run-ruled an opponent since an 8-0 win at Pacific on April 19, 2008. In the "good news" column, Fullerton hasn't been run-ruled since a 9-1 loss at Cal Poly on March 29, 2008, and has only been run-ruled four times in its last 280 games dating back to 2005 (including an active streak of 71 straight games).
TITANS GIVE BACK: The Cal State Fullerton softball team raised \$1,346 for the Orange County chapter of the Susan G. Komen for the Cure Foundation on March 28 against Cal Poly during its inaugural "Power in Pink" event to support breast cancer awareness and research. Funds were raised via voluntary donations and a silent auction for the Titans' game-worn pink jersey's. The Cal State Fullerton softball program wishes to say thank you to all those who contributed to the fund raising effort.
FUN WITH (JERSEY) NUMBERS: Ari Cervantes' \#77 is the highest jersey number worn by a Fullerton softball player in the history of the program... Trina Harrison is the first Titan to wear the \#28... Sarah Hahn is the first Fullerton player since Erin Kirkpatrick in 1997 to wear \#25... Adriana Martinez's \#22 is the most worn jersey number in Cal State Fullerton history, worn by 14 different players... Six current Titans have donned the number of one of Cal State Fullerton's 28 All-America players: Lauren Lupinetti's \#7 (Sue Lewis and Terri Oberg), Courtney Martinez's \#9 (Carey Hess and Julie Watson), Samantha Dollarhide's \#13 (Gina Oaks), Morgan LeMond's \#16 (Val Douglas), Francesca Gonzales' \#24 (Denise DeWalt and Kiki Munoz), and Krystal Heinle's \#33 (Ann Van Dortrecht).
TITANS PICKED SECOND IN THE BIG WEST: Cal State Fullerton was picked to finish second in the race for the 2009 Big West Conference title according to a vote of the league's head coaches released on Jan. 21. The Titans received 49 points behind defending champion Long Beach State, which garnered seven of the eight first-place votes and 63 points overall. UC Santa Barbara, which gained the remaining first-place vote, and Cal Poly were picked in a tie for third with 45 points followed by Pacific (28), UC Davis (26), Cal State Northridge (21), and UC Riverside (11).
A QUICK LOOK AT THE TITANS: Cal State Fullerton returns seven letter winners, four position starters and one pitcher from last season's squad which finished 27-28-1 overall and 11-10 in conference play, but earned a berth in the NCAA Tournament for the 24th time in 27 seasons. The Titans also welcome 10 newcomers to the fold - seven freshmen and a pair of transfers from nearby Mt. San Antonio College. Senior catcher Lauren Lupinetti is the team's top returning bat a season after hitting .282 with seven home runs and 33 RBI - the latter two statistics leading the team in 2008. Sophomore right-hander Ari Cervantes is the only returning pitcher for the Titans after she threw 26.2 innings and posted an 0-1 record in 11 appearances.
YOU'RE THE BEST... AROUND: Cal State Fullerton's young roster will be thrown directly into the fire during the 2009 season as the Titans' schedule features 10 teams ranked in the USA Today/NFCA preseason top 25 and seven more teams listed among those receiving votes.
HELLO, MY NAME IS...: You can't tell the players without a scorecard and some fans may be asking them to wear name tags until they can get everyone straight. Fullerton's 10 newcomers are the most since the team listed 12 new faces on the roster prior to the 2005 campaign.