Basketball: A few notes upon my return

Hi all. Back from a vacation that was at once refreshing and exhausting. You know, the kind of vacation where you need another one afterward.

Anyway, checked first thing on the status of Cal’s 2011-12 schedule and . . . nothing yet. Apparently a few contracts to get signed along with first- and second-round home-court opponents for the CBE Classic. Those first two regional-round games will be played Nov. 13-17. The Bears join Notre Dame, Missouri and Georgia at the Sprint Center in Kansas City, Mo., for the semifinals and finals, Nov. 21-22.

A few other notes:

— Crabbe/Solomon: Obviously, neither Allen Crabbe nor Richard Solomon made the cut for the U19 national team, which begins play today in the FIBA U19 World Championships in Lithuania. In Crabbe’s case, word is he was competing very well and had a shot at the roster, then took an elbow from a teammate that gave him a broken nose and minor concussion. So they couldn’t keep him. Cal says he will be fine and the mishap won’t affect his availability for the late-summer Euro tour.

— Carter exits: Walk-on senior-to-be Nigel Carter has left the program, apparently on good terms. The 6-foot-4 guard, who played just 34 minutes over Cal’s final 16 games last season, simply wanted the chance to play more before his college days are over. That wasn’t going to happen with Cal, which is deep in the backcourt. No word on where he’s headed, but he wants to play D-I somewhere, meaning he will have to sit out this season first. 

— Anteater alert: Although we don’t have Cal’s schedule, I can tell you the Bears have a non-conference home game vs. UC Irvine on Friday, Dec. 11. Pretty exciting news, huh? The Anteaters might have been an upper-division Big West team, but their top player, senior forward Eric Wise, announced a few weeks ago he has transferred to USC. So you’ll have to wait a year to see him.


Football: Update/vacation

I’m about to head off for two weeks of vacation. I’ll return on July 11. At that time, we will be getting ever-so-much-closer to the start of the season. Pac-12 media day in Los Angeles is on July 26 and Bay Area media day will be shortly thereafter. Fall camp starts the first week of August.

And don’t forget: The Pac-10 officially becomes the Pac-12 on Friday.

One tidbit before I go: It appears Chris Martin is on the move again. The former five-star linebacker is transferring out of Florida before ever playing a down for the Gators, just like he did last summer before ever playing a down for Cal.


Baseball: Update

Here’s our story recounting Cal’s win yesterday in the College World Series.

Some notes, focusing on David Esquer’s award for National Coach of the Year.

Freshman second baseman Derek Campbell will be get loose for tomorrow’s game against Virginia by hosting a live chat at 8:30 a.m. PT

A quick note: If you plan on listening to tomorrow’s game on the radio, it has been moved from 960-AM to 1550-AM. It still is on ESPN2 and the campus radio station, 90.7-FM


Football: The baseball connection

There is a football connection to Cal’s baseball team (besides the fact that Jeff Tedford attended last night’s game). Tight end Jacob Wark is a reserve first baseman for the Bears. Wark, who split time with baseball during spring football practice but otherwise has been on the team, got into just two games during the regular season and went 0-for-3. He hasn’t been active for the postseason.


Baseball: Bears play Sunday

Cal’s first game in the College World Series will be Sunday at 11 a.m. Pacific time and will air on ESPN. There are two opening-round games Saturday — Vanderbilt plays North Carolina and Texas takes on Florida.  and two on Sunday. The Bears will play the winner of today’s UC Irvine-Virginia game Super Regional game Sunday while South Carolina will take on the winner of today’s Texas A&M-Florida State Super Regional game.


Baseball: Bears whip Dallas Baptist, advance to College World Series for first time since 1992

Cal’s baseball team beat Dallas Baptist 6-2 tonight to complete an NCAA Super Regional sweep and advance to the College World Series in Omaha, Neb. The tournament begins Saturday. Pairings have not yet been announced.

The team that was axed by Cal’s administration last fall, then earned reinstatement thanks to private fundraising, will try to win a national championship to match those the Bears claimed in 1947 and 1957. Cal is playing in the CWS for the first time in 19 seasons.

Cal (37-21) got six innings of three-hit pitching from Erik Johnson and three innings of one-hit closing work from three relievers. Catcher Chadd Krist had three RBIs, including a two-run homer.

Pretty good week for the Golden Bears:

  — Michael Morrison makes Cal the first school with four different NCAA track and field decathlon titles.  

  — Ex-Bear Jason Kidd wins his first NBA title with the Dalllas Mavs.

  — The baseball team qualifies for the CWS.

I’m taking some vacation. Will check in when I get back.


Basketball: Kidd finally gets his NBA title

Jason Kidd took his talents to South Beach on Sunday night and will go home with his first NBA championship.

It also was the first NBA title for Dirk Nowitzki, Jason Terry, Mark Cuban and the Dallas Mavericks. Kidd waited 17 pro seasons — including two previous NBA finals with the New Jersey Nets — to get his first.

“I came here twice. This this was my third time,” he said afterward. “Third time was the lucky charm.”

Kidd is the first ex-Cal player to start for an NBA champion since the late Charles Johnson helped the Warriors to the 1975 crown.

At 38, Kidd became the oldest starting point guard on an NBA champion. The only other starter at any position who was older when he won a title was Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.

A two-time Olympic gold medalist, Kidd hadn’t otherwise won a title at any level since carrying St. Joseph’s High to back-to-back state titles in 1990-91 and ’91-92.

The greatest player in Cal history contributed nine points, eight assists and four rebounds to the Mavericks’ 105-92 win over the Heat in Miami, clinching a 4-2 series victory for Dallas in the NBA finals.

“I just can’t believe the journey,” Kidd said.

For the six-game series, he averaged 7.7 points, 4.5 rebounds and 6.3 assists while shooting 42.9 percent from the 3-point line.

New Warriors coach Mark Jackson, working as an analyst for ABC, said he was particularly happy that Kidd got over the hump. “He is the ultimate leader and the ultimate maestro,” Jackson said. “Jason Kidd’s DNA is all over this team.”

Over 21 postseason games in 2011, Kidd provided the Mavs 9.3 points, 4.5 rebounds, 7.3 assists and 1.9 steals per game.

In his 142nd career playoff game — every one of them as a stater — Kidd finally walked off the court an NBA champion.

Asked how many more seasons he might play, Kidd said, “With this group, hopefully another two or three. I feel great.”