January 9, 2013 at 10:54 AM
Scouting report: California
Scouting report: California
Game info: 8 p.m. Wednesday at Haas Pavilion in Berkley, Calif. (11,877 capacity).
TV: ESPN2 (Dave Flemming and Bill Walton).
Radio: KJR 950 AM and 102.9 FM (Bob Rondeau and Jason Hamilton).
Coach: Mike Montgomery is 644-296 in his 30th season as a college basketball coach. He was 154-77 in eight seasons at Montana, 393-167 in 18 seasons at Stanford and 97-52 in five seasons with the Cardinal. He also spent three seasons in the NBA and compiled a 36-48 record with the Golden State Warriors.
Prediction: Picked to finish third in a preseason poll in the Pac-12 by media who cover the conference.
Series: Cal leads 78-77 in a series that began the schools. Washington leads 174-100 in a series that began Jan. 14, 1916. Washington is 3-9 in Berkeley, Calif. under coach Lorenzo Romar. He is 11-12 against Cal, including a 1-1 record when he was at Saint Louis.
Last meeting: Due to the Pac-12’s unbalanced schedule, the teams met just once last season and Cal won 69-66 at Edmundson Pavilion.
Previous game: Won 72-64 at USC.
PLAYERS TO WATCH:
—Junior guard Allen Crabbe (right) leads the Pac-12 with a 21.4 scoring average. The 6-6, 210-pound junior is considered one of the top NBA prospects in the Pac-12. He won the conference’s Freshman of the Year award two years ago and was an all-conference pick last season. However, he’s expanded his game.
This season he attacks the basket much more. Crabbe improved his field goal percentage from 43.1 percent last season to 49.8 percent. He’s second in the conference with 77 free throw attempts through 14 games and shoots 87 percent at the line. Last season, he attempted 89 foul shots in 34 games.
Crabbe has led Cal in scoring in 10 of 14 games. He’s scored in double digits in 20 straight games, which also leads the Pac-12.
— Junior point guard Justin Cobbs is averaging 15.6 points per game. He won the Pac-12 Player of the Week award on Nov. 26.
— Junior forward Richard Solomon returns after missing the second half of last season. He’s Cal’s best rebounder, who averages 8.6 boards.
— Sophomore David Kravish was a nice surprise last season and earned a spot on the Pac-12 all-freshman team. He’s somewhat thin at 221 pounds, but he’s a terror on the glass. He averages 7.3 boards.
— Freshman guard Tyrone Wallace didn’t have the accolades as other incoming Pac-12 players, but he’s made a big impact for the injury-plagued Golden Bears. He earned his first career start vs. UC Santa Barbara on Dec. 18. He’s the only Cal freshman to play in every game.
— Cal’s top reserve is Robert Thurman, nicknamed “The Thurmanitor.” He leads all non-starters with 5.0 ppg. and 3.7 rpg. in just 17.6 minutes per contest.
— The Bears depth has been limited due to injuries. Backup guards Brandon Smith (concussion) and Ricky Kreklow (foot) are not expected to play.
F – Richard Solomon, 6-10, 235, Jr., 8.6 ppg., 6.4 rpg., 1.7 tpg.
F - David Kravish, 6-9, 221, So., 7.3, 7.8, 1.4 bpg.
G – Allen Crabbe, 6-6, 210, Jr., 21.4, 5.7, 49.8 FG%
G – Tyrone Wallace, 6-3, 186, Fr., 6.4, 5.1, 2.6 apg
G – Justin Cobbs, 6-2, 190, Jr., 15.6, 4.4, 3.9 apg.
KEYS TO THE GAME:
— Cal is very good rebounding team that averages 40.2 boards. All five starters average at least 4.4 rebounds and they do a great job at limiting opponents to just one shot. Not sure if the Bears will have an answer for 7-foot center Aziz N’Diaye, who is fourth in the Pac-12 with a 9.2 rebounding average. Still, the Huskies will need to collectively crash the glass. Washington has several players to throw at Crabbe starting with C.J. Wilcox. Another candidate include Scott Suggs and if all else fails, Desmond Simmons may be an option. Simmons held Washington State’s Brock Motum to 15 harmless points last week.