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Chico State Basketball 'brothers' on opposing benches

Published On: Jan 17 2014 08:59:12 PM CST   Updated On: Jan 17 2014 02:00:00 PM CST
CHICO, Calif. -

A basketball team is like a family. They do everything together.

Sometimes members of that family go on to do their own thing, and sometimes they return as the enemy. That is what is happening for the Chico State men's basketball team.

It is a family affair for head coach Greg Clink.

"We're extremely close. Our families are extremely close," said Clink. "I love the guy like a brother."

Clink is in his sixth season at the helm. His first three years were spent with a familiar face by his side. Current Cal State East Bay head coach Gus Argenal is occupying the opposing bench Friday.

"There's an extreme amount of pride. To have a guy that I not only coached for four years at UC Davis but then was with me for my first three years here," Clink told KRCR News Channel 7. "You know, he gives me a lot of credit for where he's at but I really give him a lot of credit for where we're at. You know, he was really instrumental in helping us establish what we're doing here."

What Chico State has established is a stable, powerful team.

Argenal helped the Wildcats recruit four all-conference players, including 2011-12 CCAA Most Valuable Player Jay Flores.

Now known as Cal State East Bay assistant coach Flores, his former teammates will enjoy the match up.

"He's taught me a lot as far as leadership, hard work, and dedication to the sport," said Flores' former teammate and current Chico State Senior Amir Carraway. "It's going to be a fun night, but no friends when the game starts."

Flores will sit alongside Argenal just as Argenal once sat beside Clink. It is a reunion of sorts that brings along some strategy on the court.

"They know everything we're about," said Carraway. "They know us personally and our games."

A sibling rivalry returning to the Acker Gymnasium court.

Chico State returns to the court Saturday against Cal State Monterey Bay led by head coach Rob Bishop. Both Bishop and Clink attended Chico State together in the 1990s, and both coached under longtime Chico State men's basketball coach Prescott "Puck" Smith.

UPDATE: Chico State beat Cal State East Bay, 83-75 Friday night.

The Wildcats improved to 11-2 overall and 7-2 in the California Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA).