Cal Welcomes USC and UCLA for Final Home Weekend
Feb. 24, 2009
USC Trojans (16-10, 7-7) at California Golden Bears (20-7, 9-5)
Thursday, Feb. 26, 7:30 p.m., Haas Pavilion, Berkeley, Calif.
Radio: KYOU (1550 AM) TV: Comcast SportsNet California
UCLA Bruins (20-7, 9-5) at California Golden Bears
Saturday, Feb. 28, 6 p.m., Haas Pavilion, Berkeley, Calif.
Radio: KYOU (1550 AM) TV: ESPN
Heading into the final home weekend of the season, California (20-7, 9-5) will host USC and UCLA this weekend. Saturday's contest with the Bruins will be televised on ESPN and ESPN360.com, as Gameday will be making its way to Berkeley. Cal will also honor its lone senior, center Jordan Wilkes on Saturday. Cal hosts USC on Thursday, Feb. 26, at 7:30 p.m. at Haas Pavilion.
The Bears will seek their 10th conference win of the season this weekend as they split last weekend's games at Oregon. Cal defeated Oregon, 78-60, last Thursday, but fell to Oregon State, 65-54, last Saturday. The loss to the Beavers snapped a four-game winning streak.
The win against the Ducks was the 20th of the season for Cal. The last time the Bears won 20 games was in the 2005-06 campaign, which was also the last time Cal competed in the NCAA Tournament.
Junior guard Jerome Randle continues to lead the squad in scoring with 17.8 ppg and has been the Bears' leading scorer in 16 of 27 games. He is dishing out 4.9 apg, second best in the Pac-10 right now, and is fourth on the team in steals with 20. On Cal's career chart, Randle is eighth in assists (342) and seventh in three-pointers (138). He is also within striking distance of the school record for three-pointers in a season, having drained 60 this year, just eight shy of the 68 by Ryan Drew in 1990.
The Bears continue to pace the nation in three-point accuracy, connecting on 44.2 percent of their attempts. Junior Forward Theo Robertson is currently No. 2 in three-point accuracy at 54.0 percent (min 1.5 made per game). Robertson recently moved into first place in the Cal record books for career three-point shooting accuracy at 44.9 percent. In addition, Cal's field goal percentage is currently second in the Pac-10 and eighth in the nation (48.9%). The Bears have shot at least 50 percent in 10 of their last 17 games.
On defense, the Bears are holding opponents to 66.6 ppg, far fewer than the 75.1 ppg Cal allowed last year. The Bears have held eight opponents to less than 40.0 percent shooting this, including holding the Ducks to 33.9 percent last Thursday. Only seven teams have been able to make more than half their attempts against Cal.
Pos No Name Ht Wt Yr Ppg RpgF 10 Jamal Boykin 6-8 230 Jr 10.2 6.6Has amassed five of Cal's seven double-doubles on the seasonF 24 Theo Robertson 6-6 225 Jr 12.3 3.8Led the Bears in scoring at Oregon State with 15 pointsC 33 Jordan Wilkes 7-0 225 Sr 5.0 3.8Scored a career-high 16 points at USCG 3 Jerome Randle 5-10 160 Jr 17.8 4.9 apgEarned 13th 20-point performance with 20 vs. Washington StateG 23 Patrick Christopher 6-5 215 Jr 14.4 3.7Recorded a team-high 21 points vs. Stanford
Cal Head Coach Mike Montgomery
Mike Montgomery, one of the most successful coaches in the collegiate game, is in his first season overseeing the California program. He has a 20-7 record with the Golden Bears and a 567-251 (.693) overall mark that includes eight years at Montana and 18 seasons at Stanford. Montgomery has coached teams to one NIT title (1991), four Pac-10 regular-season crowns (1999, 2000, 2003, 2004) and one Pac-10 Tournament title (2004), as well as the 1998 NCAA Final Four. He was named the Naismith Coach of the Year in 2000 and is a four-time Pac-10 Coach of the Year (1999, 2000, 2003, 2004). Montgomery was introduced as Cal's 15th head coach on April 5, 2008. Last Thursday, Montgomery became the third consecutive Cal coach to win 20 games in his first season as head coach (Ben Braun - 23 in 1996-97, Todd Bozeman - 22 in 1993-94).
USC Scouting Report
A Look at USC
The Trojans come to Berkeley on Thursday with a 7-7 record in the Pac-10. USC split last weekend's games in Los Angeles, beating Washington State on Thursday, but losing to Washington on Saturday. Dwight Lewis currently leads the squad in scoring, averaging 15.4 ppg.
Cal-USC Series History
The Bears and Trojans split the season series last year, with the home team winning each contest. Cal knocked off then-No. 22 USC in the 2007-08 Pac-10 opener, 82-72. Patrick Christopher led the Bears with 24 points, while Jerome Randle collected 16. The Trojans got even in Los Angeles later in the year, prevailing 93-89 in overtime. USC also won the first meeting this season, 72-63. Cal leads the all-time series, 125-117.
USC Head Coach Tim Floyd
Tim Floyd is in his fourth season at USC and 21st season of head coaching at the collegiate and NBA levels. In 2007-08, he led USC to a 21-12 record and into the NCAA Tournament after finishing tied for third in the Pac-10 with an 11-7 record.
Pos No Name Ht Wt Yr Ppg RpgF 10 DeMar DeRozan 6-7 220 Fr 12.6 5.5F 22 Taj Gibson 6-9 225 Jr 13.8 9.3F 04 Leonard Washington 6-7 230 Fr 6.7 4.5G 21 Dwight Lewis 6-5 215 Jr 15.4 3.1G 13 Daniel Hackett 6-5 215 Jr 11.6 4.1
For more information: www.usctrojans.com
UCLA Scouting Report
A Look at UCLA
UCLA and Cal currently boast the exact same record entering this weekend's action. The Bruins split their weekend series last week in Los Angeles, topping nationally-ranked Washington, but falling to Washington State on Saturday. Darren Collison currently leads the Bruins in scoring, averaging 15.0 ppg.
Cal-UCLA Series History
UCLA won all three meetings against Cal last season, including a second-round matchup in the Pac-10 Tournament. UCLA also won the first meeting this season in Los Angeles, 81-66. The Bears last victory over the Bruins came in the 2007 conference tournament when the Bears emerged victorious in overtime, 76-69. UCLA leads the all-time series, 130-94.
UCLA Head Coach Ben Howland
Ben Howland has led the Bruins to back-to-back-to-back Pac-10 titles (2006-08) and back-to-back-to-back Final Four appearances (2006-08). He has won more games in a three-year span (97 from 2006-08) than any other coach in UCLA history.
Pos No Name Ht Wt Yr Ppg RpgF 03 Josh Shipp 6-5 220 Sr 13.0 2.8F 41 Nikola Dragovic 6-9 216 Jr 8.8 3.7C 12 Alfred Aboya 6-9 245 Sr 9.9 6.0G 02 Darren Collison 6-0 160 Sr 15.0 2.2G 21 Jrue Holiday 6-3 180 Fr 9.1 3.8
For more information: www.uclabruins.com
Golden Bear Notes
Last Time Out: Beavers Sweep Season Series With Bears
Despite leading by as many as 12 and having a seven-point lead at the half, Cal had its four-game winning streak snapped at Oregon State, falling by a score of 65-54. The Bears were unable to stop Calvin Haynes, who scored 15 of his 19 points in the second half to lead the Beavers to victory. Theo Robertson led the Bears in scoring with 15, while junior forward Jamal Boykin led Cal on the boards with seven. Robertson also tallied three steals for the second time in his career. Sophomore forward Harper Kamp made his first career start for the injured Jordan Wilkes, who suffered a concussion at Oregon.
Harper's Heating Up
Harper Kamp has been an important factor in Cal's success this season. Last Thursday at Oregon, he led the Bears in scoring with a career-high 18 points, including going 6-for-6 from the free-throw line. In his last four games, Kamp has gone 13-for-15 from the charity stripe. He grabbed a career-best eight rebounds vs. Stanford on Feb. 14. The Mesa, Ariz., native is currently averaging 4.2 ppg and 3.4 rpg. But his biggest contributions have been on the defensive end, where he has been counted on to come off the bench and provide a strong presence.
Shooting at an All-Time Rate
Cal's near 50.0 percent shooting rate of 48.9 ranks eighth in the nation, second in the conference and fifth on the school's season list. It's also the best Cal has shot since the 1990 squad finished at 50.1 percent. The Bears have shot over 50.0 percent in 10 of their last 17 games and have been over 65 percent twice this season - 66.7 percent vs. Oregon and 67.9 percent against Texas-Pan American.
Cal Season Field Goal Percentage Leaders
Year G FG-FGA Pct1981-82 27 719-1402 51.31989-90 32 865-1726 50.11988-89 33 876-1750 50.11980-81 27 780-1569 49.72008-09 26 735-1502 48.9
Hot Shots: Jerome Randle Lighting Up the Nets
Jerome Randle, who averaged 11.8 ppg last season, is pouring in 17.8 ppg this year to lead the Bears. He has 13 20-point efforts so far, exceeding his career total of three 20-point games during his first two seasons in the program. He has paced Cal in scoring 16 times in 27 games, including a career-high-tying 26 points vs. both Florida State and Arizona State. Randle is shooting 50.8 percent from the floor, up from 42.8 percent in 2008, and has made 45.1 percent of his three-point attempts (60-for-133). In addition, he is 119-for-136 at the free throw line (87.5%). On Feb. 5 vs. Washington, Randle recorded his 1,000th career point, becoming the 37th Cal player in school history to accomplish that feat.
Hot Shots, Part Trey
Cal is ranked first nationally in three-point shooting, having connected on 44.2 percent of its shots from behind the arc. Theo Robertson is second in the nation in three-point percentage at 54.0 percent (min 1.5 made per game), which is also currently the best percentage from behind the arc in a season in school history As a team, the Bears have made more than half their attempts 12 times this season, including going 8-for-12 vs. Washington State, 9-for-15 against the Bruins, 7-for-10 at UNLV, 8-for-12 against San Francisco, 7-for-11 at Utah and 7-for-12 against Nevada. Jerome Randle (45.1 percent), third-best percentage in a season in school history, and Patrick Christopher (40.6) are also shooting well from long distance.
NCAA Three-Point Percentage Leaders (as of 2/22/09)
1. California .442 ( 163/369 )2. North Dakota State .418 ( 200/478 )3. Portland .415 ( 216/520 )4. IPFW .411 ( 176/428 )5. Green Bay .408 ( 236/579 )
Jerome Randle Aiming to Stay Hot at the Line
Already Cal's all-time leader in career free throw percentage entering the season, Jerome Randle is connecting at an even higher clip in 2008-09. Over his first two years in the program, Randle was a combined 115-for-136 (84.6%), which ranked just ahead of Michael Chavez, who was 198-for-235 (84.3%) at the stripe from 1980-83. This season, though, Randle has made 119-for-136 free throw attempts (87.5%), the third-best season percentage in school history. Four times this season Randle has been perfect at the line when having more than five shots. He went 8-for-8 vs. Arizona State, 7-for-7 against Nevada, 6-for-6 vs. Oregon and 6-for-6 against USF. In addition, Patrick Christopher recently moved into eighth in the all-time career free-throw list at 79.3 percent (161-202).
Cal Career Free Throw Leaders
1. Jerome Randle (2007- ) 86.0% 234-2722. Michael Chavez (1980-83) 84.3% 198-2353. Ryan Anderson (2007-08) 84.1% 276-3284. Shantay Legans (2000-02) 83.7% 190-2275. Bill Duwe (1969-72) 81.6% 120-1476. Amit Tamir (2002-04) 81.1% 163-2017. Denny Fitzpatrick (1958-59) 80.6% 112-1398. Patrick Christopher (2007- ) 79.7% 161-2029. Ed Gray (1996-97) 79.0% 264-334
Theo Robertson: Cal's Top Three-Point Shooter in School History
Currently second the nation in three-point shooting this season, Theo Robertson recently took over the top spot on Cal's all-time three-point shooting list, boasting a career average of 44.9 percent. Robertson drilled four of his five three-point attempts at UCLA on Jan. 29 and was a combined 5-for-8 vs. Arizona and Arizona State. Earlier this season, he knocked down a career-best five three-pointers against San Francisco. Not far behind is Jerome Randle in seventh at 39.4 percent.
Cal Career Top Three-Point Shooters
1. Theo Robertson (2006- ) 44.9% 97-2162. Billy Dreher (1991-92) 43.1% 81-1883. Keith Smith (1987-90) 41.3% 90-2184. Bill Elleby (1989-92) 41.0% 135-3295. Ryan Forehan-Kelly (1999-02) 40.7% 107-2636. Omar Wilkes (2006-07) 40.4% 61-1517. Jerome Randle (2007- ) 39.4% 138-350
Boykin Boosts Bears with Boards and Baskets
Jamal Boykin has emerged as Cal's most consistent rebounder this season, averaging 6.6 per game. He has paced the Bears on the glass 14 times overall, with a career high of 14 at Washington State on Jan. 8 and duplicated at Oregon last Thursday. Not only does Boykin have a team-high 115 defensive rebounds, but he also owns a team-best 62 offensive boards. He has also been helping with scoring, posting a career-best 22 points at Stanford on Jan. 17. He has five double-doubles on the year, all of which have come in the last 14 games, most recently with 11 points and 14 rebounds at Oregon. Boykin is averaging 10.2 ppg with 15 double-digit contests. In addition, Boykin's career field goal percentage of .519 ranks sixth all-time in school history.
Wilkes' Presence Felt as Smaller of the 7-Footers
Jordan Wilkes, half of Cal's tandem of 7-footers, is putting up career numbers so far in 2008-09, notching personal highs in points (16 at USC), rebounds (10 vs. DePaul) and blocks (2 vs. North Carolina A&T). Wilkes had a strong pair of games in his hometown of Los Angeles in late January, posting an eight-point performance at UCLA on Jan. 29 and following that up with a career-best 16-point outing at USC on Jan. 31. On Feb. 5 against Washington, Wilkes posted 14 points and led the Bears on the boards with eight. The brother of former Cal guard Omar Wilkes and son of NBA great Jamaal Wilkes has started all but one game this season. A fourth-year junior who redshirted two seasons ago with a knee injury, Wilkes announced that he will graduate with a degree in social welfare this spring and forego his final season of eligibility.
Gutierrez Quietly Making an Impact
The hustle of freshman Jorge Gutierrez has become evident in the past couple weeks. Gutierrez earned a season-best five steals and eight rebounds, and tied his season best with 10 points against Stanford on Feb. 14. The week before, against the Washington schools, he came off the bench for seven points vs. UW on Feb. 5 and four points, four rebounds and three assists against WSU on Feb. 7. Despite averaging just 18.1 minutes per game, Gutierrez is second on the squad in steals with 23. Gutierrez is sixth on the team in scoring (4.4 ppg). He first set his high of 10 points in the Bears' Nov. 28 win at UNLV and has snared at least five rebounds eight times.
Patrick Christopher: Four for Four
In the first four games in Pac-10 play, Patrick Christopher was on a roll. Christopher, a back-to-back Pac-10 Player of the Week honoree this season, posted four consecutive 20-point performances against Arizona, Arizona State, Washington State and Washington, including a career-high 27-point outing at Washington on Jan. 10. He also tied his career best in rebounds against the Huskies with 11. In a game that went three overtimes, Christopher was playing with four fouls from the end of regulation and still played strongly defensively, as well. Within those four conference games, Christopher nailed 12 three-pointers and averaged 23.0 ppg, both of which were Pac-10 bests.
1,000 Points and More for Randle and Christopher
On Feb. 5, Jerome Randle and Patrick Christopher became the 37th and 38th players in school history to reach the 1,000-point plateau. Randle entered the Washington game needing 17 points and scored 21, while Christopher only needed three points to reach the milestone and hit it with a free throw with 2:23 left in the contest. Christopher is now 29th on the all-time scoring list with 1,066 points and Randle is 30th with 1,062 points.
Cal's All-Time Scoring Leaders
25. Andy Wolfe (1946-48) 1,11226. Ryan Drew (1988-91) 1,08627. Ed Gray (1996-97) 1,08228. Kevin Singleton (1977-81) 1,06829. Patrick Christopher (2007- ) 1,06630. Jerome Randle (2007- ) 1,062
Bears Make Top 25 for the First Time in Six Years
For the first time in six years, Cal made an appearance in both the Associated Press and the USA Today/Coaches polls Jan. 12 after opening Pac-10 play with a 4-0 record, sweeping Arizona and Arizona State at home and Washington and Washington State on the road. The Bears were ranked No. 22 in the AP poll and No. 23 by the coaches. The last time Cal was in the rankings was during the 2002-03 season, when the Bears were No. 24 heading into the 2003 Pac-10 Tournament.
Cal Earns Best Pre-Jan. 1 Win Mark
Having completed the nonconference portion of its schedule with an 11-2 mark, Cal recorded double-digit pre-New Year's Day victories for the first time since the 1947-48 season, when the Bears were 10-3 before the New Year.
Former Great Darrall Imhoff Has No. 40 Jersey Retired
Former University of California center Darrall Imhoff, who helped the Golden Bears to the 1959 NCAA championship and was a member of the gold medal-winning 1960 U.S. Olympic team, had his number 40 jersey retired in a halftime ceremony during the Cal-Stanford game on Feb. 14. The event was part of a special celebration at the game commemorating the 100th season of Golden Bear basketball, as well as recognition of the 50th anniversary of Cal's national title. A standout for the Bears from 1958-60, Imhoff was named a second-team All-American as a junior and a first-team All-American his senior year. He was also a two-time first-team all-conference selection and was selected Cal's Most Valuable Player as a senior in 1960. Imhoff, a 6-10 center from San Gabriel, Calif., was a part of three conference championship squads that advanced to the NCAA Tournament under head coach Pete Newell. The 1958 team reached the regional final, where it lost in overtime to Seattle, before reaching the Final Four the next two years. Imhoff attended Cal's game at Oregon last Thursday.
100th Season of Cal Men's Basketball
California is celebrating the 100th season of Golden Bear men's basketball this year. Over the course of its first century of play, Cal has had its fair share of highlights - an NCAA championship in 1959, three Final Four appearances (1946, 1959, 1960) and an NIT title in 1999. The Bears have advanced to postseason 48 times, with the majority of those appearances in the last 25 years. Among the top names to pass through the Cal program include Hall of Fame coach Pete Newell; Olympic champions Darrall Imhoff, Jason Kidd and Shareef Abdur-Rahim; perennial NBA All-Star Kevin Johnson; and four Pac-10 Players of the Year (Kidd '94, Abdur-Rahim '96, Ed Gray '97, Sean Lampley '01). The Bears will also be celebrating the 50th anniversary of their NCAA title run. Led by all-conference guards Al Buch and Denny Fitzpatrick and All-America center Imhoff, Cal defeated Oscar Robinson's Cincinnati squad, 64-58, in the national semifinals and then edged Jerry West's West Virginia team, 71-70, for the national crown. Cal will honor the 50th anniversary of the 1959 championship with a special ceremony during the Feb. 14, 2009, game vs. Stanford, which will include recognition of all Golden Bear basketball alumni who have contributed to Cal's history.
Bears Sign Bak Bak, Sanders-Frison
Cal signed two players to National Letters of Intent in November, adding 6-10, 200-pound forward Bak Bak out of Village Christian HS in Sun Valley, Calif., and 6-8, 265-pound center Markurhi Sanders-Frison from South Plains CC in Levelland, Texas, to the 2009-10 roster.
Originally from Sudan and raised in Nairobi, Kenya, Bak spent last summer playing with the Double Pump AAU team. After moving to the United States, he attended the American Heritage School in Plantation, Fla., for 2006-07, but did not play basketball. Bak then relocated to California in the fall of 2007, sitting out last season as a transfer at Valley Christian HS.
Sanders-Frison attended Jefferson HS in Portland, Ore., where he averaged 10 ppg and 8 rpg, helping the team to three city titles. Last year, he helped Eastern Arizona College to a 30-6 record and contributed 10 ppg and 10 rpg.
Remembering Hall of Famer Pete Newell
Pete Newell, one of the basketball's most respected and beloved figures who led California to the 1959 NCAA title, passed away on Monday, Nov. 17 after a long illness. He was 93.
Head coach of the Golden Bears from 1954-60, Newell guided Cal to four consecutive conference crowns (1957-60) and was voted National Coach of the Year in 1960. He finished his Cal career with a 119-44 record, which included an NCAA runner-up finish in '60 in addition to the 1959 title. Newell also led the U.S. Olympic team to a gold medal at the 1960 Games in Rome with a squad that featured former Cal center Darrall Imhoff as well as such future NBA standouts as Oscar Robertson and Jerry West. He later served as Cal's Director of Athletics from 1960-68. On Dec. 21, 1987, the playing surface at Harmon Gym (now Haas Pavilion) was renamed 'Pete Newell Court' in his honor. A statue of Newell, created by renowned sculptor Eino, was installed in the Haas Pavilion Club Room in the fall of 2006. Newell was inducted into the Cal Athletic Hall of Fame in 1978 and enshrined into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame a year later.
Newell, who guided San Francisco to the 1949 National Invitation Tournament title, is one of only three men to have captured the 'Triple Crown' of coaching - NIT, NCAA and Olympic gold medal (also Bob Knight, Dean Smith).