Johnson Selected Big West Player of the Week

Jan. 17, 2011

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - UC Santa Barbara junior guard Orlando Johnson was named Big West Player of the Week on Monday after leading the Gauchos to wins over UC Irvine and UC Riverside last week. It is the second time Johnson has been honored this season and the fifth time in his career.

On Jan. 13, in a 71-58 win over visiting UC Irvine, the Seaside, Calif., native scored 22 points, collected seven rebounds and passed off for three assists to propel UCSB. Johnson scored 16 of his 22 points in the second half to help the Gauchos hold off the Anteaters.

UCSB defeated UC Riverside on Saturday and Johnson scored 28 points on 11-of-16 shooting from the field. He once again added seven rebounds and also had a pair of assists. In the victory over the Highlanders he scored 16 points in the first half and 12 in the second.

For the week, Johnson averaged 25.0 points, 7.0 rebounds, 2.5 assists and 1.0 steal per game. He made 19-of-33 shots overall, 57.6%, 2-of-8 from three-point range, 25.0% and 10-of-12 from the free throw line, 83.3%.

"O.J. has really been a beast the last two-and-a-half games," said UCSB head coach Bob Williams. "When he goes inside and attacks the rim, there isn't anybody in this league better and that's what he's been doing."

Johnson, who has scored 20 or more points in four consecutive games, is now averaging 19.4 points per game, first in the Big West and 31st nationally. He is also averaging team-leading figures of 6.4 rebounds and 3.0 assists per game and he is the only player in the league to rank among the top-10 in all three categories.

As a sophomore in 2000-10, Johnson averaged 18.0 points per game, winning the Big West scoring crown, and was named Big West Player of the Year. In fact, dating back to last season, he has scored in double-figures in 46 straight games, every game he has played, a school record.

The Player of the Week honor is not only Johnson's second of the season but it marks the fourth time that a Gaucho player has won it this season. Fellow-junior James Nunnally earned Player of the Week honors twice in December.

UCSB, which has won two straight and four out of its last five, is 10-6 overall and 3-2 in the Big West. The Gauchos are tied for second in the league and will travel to Cal State Fullerton on Saturday, Jan. 22 for a 6:00 p.m. game at Titan Gym.

Santa Barbara will be at Cal Poly on Jan. 27 before returning home on Jan. 29 to host Cal State Northridge in a 7:00 p.m. game at the Thunderdome. To purchase tickets, please call (805) 893-UCSB, visit the Ticket Office located inside the Intercollegiate Athletics building on campus or buy online and print at home by clicking here.

The Intercollegiate Athletics Ticket Office has two parking spaces adjacent to the building and is now open on Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., making it easier than ever for fans to purchase tickets. The two parking spots, designated specifically for the Ticket Office, are also available during weekday hours, which are 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Don't forget, fans can follow UCSB Athletics on twitter by going to twitter.com/UCSBgauchos and the men's basketball program at twitter.com/UCSBbasketball.

Tune in to UCSB Athletics' weekly radio show Talk'n Gauchos, which airs every Tuesday from 6-7 p.m. on AM 1290 KZSB. The show is broadcast live from the Beachside Bar & Café on Goleta Beach. Fans are encouraged to attend the show for free gear and ticket giveaways and can even e-mail a question in to one of the guests and have it read live over the air. The show also airs live online via audio streaming and fans can click here to check out the entire lineup of live audio streaming online.

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