January 26, 2010

Time Out With The Citadel's Regan Truesdale

CHARLESTON, S.C.- Regan Truesdale became the third member of The Citadel basketball family to have his jersey hung from the rafters at McAlister Field House. Truesdale was a two-time Southern Conference player of the year and is the current all-time leading scorer in school history.

He holds the distinction of being a two-time recipient of the Malcolm U. Pitt Award (1984, 1985), given annually to the Player of the Year in the Southern Conference. Only nine other players have received the award twice during their careers. Truesdale continues to hold the school record for points in a career (1,661), points in a season (624), made field goals in a career (638) and season (242), field goals attempted for a game (32) and season (477), and free throws made in a game (22).

His 688 career rebounds remains the fifth-best effort in Citadel history.  Also, only seven times in Citadel history has a player averaged more than 20 points a game with Truesdale hitting the mark twice (22.0 in 1984 and 21.5 in 1985).  He is the only player in school history to record 600-plus points in a season (624 in 1985 and 617 in 1984), and twice led the team in scoring (22.0 in 1984 and 21.5 in 1985). Truesdale twice led the team in field goal percentage (53.2% in 1983 and 51.1% in 1985), and led the team in rebounding three times (6.1 in 1983, 8.1 in 1984 and 8.7 in 1985).

He was a member of Les Robinson-coached teams that won 22 consecutive games in McAlister Field House, and was a member of the 1985 team that went 18-11 and won a game in the Southern Conference Tournament (over Appalachian State).  Truesdale was inducted into The Citadel Athletic Hall of Fame in 2003.

Prior to his jersey being immortalized before The Citadel faithful, Truesdale sat down for a series of questions about his four-year career with the Bulldogs. The following are excerpts from that interview:

Q: Having played for Les Robinson for all four years of your career how did the things that he taught you as a coach apply both in basketball and your personal life?

A:  "He taught me a lot of lessons that I will never forget. One thing is to be serious about what you are doing and have fun. If you have fun at it, then you are going to get really good. The other thing that he taught me was to practice and give it your best every time if it is something that you love."

Q: You faced North Carolina each of your four years as a member of the Bulldogs. What is your favorite Michael Jordan memory?  Secondly, did you two ever go one-on-one during the course of a game and with Jordan if so, what happened?

A:  "My best Michael Jordan memory was when we played them very close (Feb. 24, 1984) in Charlotte. That night I scored 26 points and Jordan ended up with 24 in the game. We never went one-on-one with each other because we were playing zone and I was just taking the open shots that were given to me."

Q: During the course of your career The Citadel played against two national champions-North Carolina and N.C. State. When playing them did you have any inkling that they would eventually be crowned national champions?

A:  "No, we never thought that either one of them would end up winning the national championship. N.C. State beat us 50-49 (Feb. 3, 1984), the year after they won in a really tough game. Unfortunately, the referees called an over the back on Cozell McQueen and waved off two points in the game."

Q: Go back to your 41-point performance against Marshall (Jan. 9, 1984). That night you hit 22-for-28 from the free-throw line. What was going through your mind as you were constantly being sent to the charity stripe?

A:  "They had a really powerful team, but we came out here and the Corps got behind us, which is something that I hope they continue to do for our teams.  I know that we won the game with the help of the sixth man. The Marshall coach (Rick Huckabay) had mentioned that night that we were not that good of a team. He said 'they were going to come in here and beat us.' We had seen them driving around campus earlier that day, laughing and picking on the way that the freshmen were walking together. We had decided that they were not going to beat us that night. We were really happy to beat them because we had it in for them from the start. As for shooting a lot of free throws, I was just trying to get to the basket, get fouled and get an easy two points."

Q: How special is it being a member of Citadel history with a team that won 22 straight games at McAlister Field House?

A:  "That was great. It was one of the longest streaks in the nation at that time. We were very proud of it because we knew that once we got a team into McAlister, we could beat them. We played Chattanooga during that time, with a really solid team, and won (71-63) in here as well. We were extra motivated to play a top caliber team which was helpful in beating them."

22-game McAlister Field House Winning Streak

   
Date Season Opponent

Citadel

Opp

J9 1983-84 vs Marshall*

84

76

J12 1983-84 vs College of Charleston

71

62

J19 1983-84 vs Furman*

89

83

J28 1983-84 vs Appalachian State*

83

69

F8 1983-84 vs VMI*

65

61

F11 1983-84 vs East Tennessee State*

76

72

F16 1983-84 vs Newberry

108

77

F23 1983-84 vs South Carolina State

91

78

F25 1983-84 vs Western Carolina*

106

101

N24 1984-85 vs University of the South

96

61

N26 1984-85 vs Coker

112

85

D1 1984-85 vs Georgia State

93

72

D8 1984-85 vs Baptist

62

53

J3 1984-85 vs Erskine

93

81

J14 1984-85 vs Furman*

73

65

J19 1984-85 vs Appalachian State*

84

77

J24 1984-85 vs East Tennessee State*

79

67

J20 1984-85 vs Marshall*

92

87

F4 1984-85 vs Chattanooga*

71

63

F12 1984-85 vs VMI*

64

61

F16 1984-85 vs Western Carolina*

91

85

F18 1984-85 vs Davidson*

82

79

*-Southern Conference Game

Q: Finally, do you still follow The Citadel basketball program?  What are your thoughts as players such as Demetrius Nelson and Cameron Wells make a run at your all-time scoring mark?

A:  "I've followed the team every year since I have left. I enjoy checking them out in the newspaper, on TV and coming out to games when I have a chance. I continue to support them and wish them well. Most of all we have a great coach here and are moving in the right direction as a program, which will only lead to better things in the future. I wish Cameron well because I know that he is working hard and realizes that it is not easy. He will be double and triple teamed, but if he continues to work hard it will happen. A lot of people wished me well, so I can only do the same for him."

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