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Husky Men's Basketball

The latest news and analysis on Husky men's hoops.

December 23, 2011 at 10:14 AM

Cal has one last chance to get signature win for Pac-12

California carries the Pac-12 banner into today’s game at No. 21 UNLV.
The conference desperately needs the Golden Bears to upset the Rebels to save a little face and prevent an 0-12 showing against ranked opponents.
After Stanford lost to Butler 71-66 on Thursday, the Pac-12 won’t have a team ranked when the polls are released Monday, extending a four-week absence in the rankings.
Cal is short handed today and will not have sophomore forward Richard Solomon who is out due to a foot injury. Senior guard Jorge Gutierrez missed the previous game because of food poisoning, but is expected to return.
The Pac-12’s poor showing in the nonconference season decreases the chances more than one team will receive an at-large berth to the NCAA tournament. The conference tournament winner gets an automatic berth, so it appears as if two, maybe three Pac-12 teams will make the Big Dance.
“It’s just put a lot of pressure on everybody in the league,” Cal coach Mike Montgomery said. “When everybody was winning and everybody was ranked, you’re thinking, ‘Man, we can finish fifth and get in.’ … It’s not that way now.”
TODAY’S PAC-12 SCHEDULE:
California (10-2) at No. 21 UNLV (12-0), 2 p.m.
Richmond (7-5) at UCLA (6-5), 7:30 p.m.
THURSDAY NIGHT’S GAMES:
— Washington State drew 9,381 to KeyArena who watched the Cougars power past Pepperdine for a 67-56 win in the annual Cougar Hardwood Classic. Faisal Aden scored 17 points off the bench and freshman guard DaVonte Lacy had 15.
— Following a 63-47 defeat at home to No. 12 Kanasas, USC coach Kevin O’Neill said: “The stage was a bit big for our guys. We looked slow, we looked bad. And we didn’t shoot the ball well.” Maurice Jones, USC’s top scorer, was held to seven points on 2 of 13 shooting. Aaron Fuller scored 19 for the Trojans who fell to 5-8.
— Butler, the two-time NCAA tournament finalist, beat Stanford 71-66 at Maples Pavilion. The Cardinal (10-2), which lost a non-conference game at home for the first time in two years, received 17 points and nine rebounds from Josh Owens and 16 points from freshman Chasson Randle.
— Oregon won three games in three days at home this week, including Thursday’s 55-45 win over Stephen F. Austin to claim the Global Sports Hoops Showcase. Devoe Joseph, the Minnesota transfer, continues to lead the Ducks who improved to 9-3. He had 10 points and eight rebounds in 35 minutes. “As a whole, we’re not happy with the 9-3 start, but that’s not a terrible record,” said junior forward E.J. Singler, who had 12 points. “We’re just excited for the Pac-12 season to start. I think we can do some really good things in the Pac-12.”
— Talk about good scheduling. Arizona faced a struggling Bryant University that fell to 1-11 following a 100-60 Wildcats win. The 40-point blowout was just what Arizona (9-4) needed.
— Freshman forward Spencer Dinwiddie scored a career-high 18 points and Andre Roberson had 11 points and 16 rebounds to lead Colorado to a 56-51 victory over Texas Southern. The Buffaloes improved to 7-4.
— Utah rode into Weber State riding a two-game winning streak, but the Utes’ prosperity died an ugly death at the Purple Palace. Utah fell 80-51in a game that was reminiscent of their early struggles.

Comments | Topics: top 25, UCLA

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