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Basketball: Christian Behrens commits to Cal

Mike Montgomery got his second verbal commitment in a week tonight after a phone call from Christian Behrens, a 6-foot-8 forward from Tahoma High in Covington, Wash.

Tahoma coach Rob Morrow just told me that Behrens called Montgomery with the news at 6 p.m.

Behrens spent last week in London with his mother, visiting family, and texted his coach back and forth several times. Back at school on Monday, the two talked about Behrens’ decision.

“He looked relieved, he looked excited. He feels pretty good about it,” Morrow said. “I think it’s a good move on both parts.”

Morrow said Behrens recently was named to two all-star games: the Washington state game March 12 at Mt. Lake Terrace High outside Seattle, and the Washington-Oregon game, April 2 at the Chiles Center at the University of Portland.

“He’s had a run of good news the last couple days,” Morrow said.

Morrow said Behrens would have preferred to stay close to home. “The opportunity (at Cal) was too great,” Morrow said. “I think he can be a player at Cal.

“He’s an excellent passer. For a 6-8 guy who can dribble and shoot, you can kind of run stuff through him.  He sees the floor, understands the game, has a high basketball IQ. He’s going to get better and better at putting the ball on the floor. He has a knack of getting to the free throw line.”

Behrens missed the second half of his junior season after suffering an ACL knee injury. But he returned this season to average 21.7 points and 10.5 rebounds.

Behrens will join a Cal recruiting class that features fall signee David Kravish, a 6-9 forward from Lee’s Summit North High in Kansas, and De’End Parker, a 6-5 combo guard from City College of San Francisco, who committed last week.

Jeff Faraudo