UCSB junior center Alan Williams' nickname is "Big Al," and rarely has there been a nickname more befitting.
Williams is physically big. That's obvious. He has a big personality and that's obvious to anyone who knows him.
Williams puts up big numbers. That's easy to see just by looking his stat line that reads: 17.1 points per game, 10.7 rebounds per game, 2.3 blocked shots per game and 15 double-doubles.
His accomplishments in just over two years at UCSB have been big. Williams has been named First Team All-Big West, All-District, First Team Preseason Mid-Major All-American, Preseason Big West Player of the Year by CollegeSportsMadness.com, Preseason All-Big West by the media and he was a three-time Big West Player of the Week as a sophomore.
Williams is one of the most productive big men around and he causes big problems for Gaucho opponents who have to game plan for him.
Last year, the Phoenix native had some big games. In a win over Santa Clara he had 29 points and 17 rebounds. In another win over Cal State Northridge, Williams had a career-high 32 points as well as 16 rebounds. At Cal Poly, he had 24 points and 17 rebounds.
With Williams at the center of things, UCSB's coaches and fans have big plans and high hopes for the 2013-14 season.
Williams and the rest of the UCSB men's basketball team will tip-off the 2013-14 season on Sunday, Nov. 3 when they host Cal State East Bay in an exhibition game that will tip-off at 2:00 p.m. in the Thunderdome.
Great season ticket packages are available for the Gauchos. The non-conference schedule includes Cal, which will be making its first appearance in Santa Barbara since it helped christen the Thunderdome in 1979, as well as old rival Utah State and 2013 NCAA Tournament participant South Dakota State.
For more information or to purchase season tickets, drop by the Ticket Office in the Intercollegiate Athletics Building on campus, call 805-893-UCSB (8272) or click here.
Check out every edition of UCSB's Countdown to Tipoff series here.