Basketball: An alternate NCAA bracket projection has Bears going to Dayton for play-in game

While ESPN’s Joe Lunardi has Cal as a No. 10 seed in the NCAA tournament field, CBS expert Jerry Palm isn’t quite as high on the Bears.

Palm’s updated bracket has Cal in a March 14 Dayton, Ohio, play-in game vs. South Florida for the right to enter the East region as a No. 12 seed. The Bears then would face No. 4 Wisconsin in Nashville, Tenn., on March 16.

Gonna be a wild six days.

Meanwhile . . .

   — Cal signee Kaileb Rodriguez, a 6-foot-8 forward from ThunderRidge HS in Highlands Ranch, Colo., has been selected to play in The Show, the state’s April 6  high school all-star game. Rodriguez averaged 10.4 points and 6.8 rebounds for a team with balanced scoring that finished 20-6 after losing in the state quarterfinals.

   — How many ex-Pac-12 players does it take to fill up an all-Mountain West team? Well, former UCLA players Drew Gordon (New Mexico) and Mike Moser (UNLV) were first-team picks, former Bruin Chace Stanback (UNLV) was a third-team selection and Washington State transfer Xavier Thames (San Diego State) was an honorable mention choice.


Jeff Faraudo

  • Any doubters out there still that a third straight loss would likely mean the NIT?

    I don’t want to be proven right, but I am nervous that people think the Tourney is still a lock, which would likely translate to some players thinking it is a lock, which, if it resulted in the slightest of decrease in focus, could aid in a loss.

    Bears, stop playing as individuals. Regain the team aspects of the first half of conference play. Run the offense and let the game come to you. Pull the trigger on shooting or driving when it’s there, but don’t force it because you want it to be there unless the shot clock is winding down. Have faith in the offense and your teammates and the open looks will come.

  • SteveNTEXAS

    Takeofftheredshirt– how smart are you feeling now?

    Tell us how great Monty is as we barely get into the NCAAs in the worst year of the Pac 12?

    Tell us how he has our team primed to finish the season with losses to Colo and Stanford- neither team well thought of and Stanford not in the top 100 RPI.

  • Kyle

    No chance they are in a play in game. Zippy shot. Win one in the pac 12 tournament and they are 10 seed in one of the regions. The committee isn’t dumb enough to put a team with 26 wins from a power 6 conference regardless of how down it might be in a play in game. 10 or 11 seed a lock.

  • Yoda

    Steve, Montgomery is a great coach and you are stuck in Texas with your bitterness, which is actually funny to me. Go watch some Bobby Knight instructional tapes on throwing chairs and suck your thumb.

    WC, the biggest problem is that teams have figured out how to take Cal out of its offense by playing very physically against them. When that doesn’t happen they are extremely efficient. When it does they play too soft, as Kamp has noted. They’d better toughen up and learn how to deal with it or they’re going down hard.

  • Esquire Joe

    WC, with all due respect, no one is suggesting that Cal is a shoo-in for the NCAAs if they lose their first game of the P-12 tourney (at least no one that I’ve seen). I think those who say the NCAA tourney is “a lock” are saying that one win in the P-12 tourney is a lock.

    Of course, with a Cal team that is gasping for air coming down the stretch, I won’t say that any game is a lock. However, aside from the Bears’ rubbery legs in general, there is nothing to suggest that Cal is vulnerable to the Stanford/ASU winner in LA. It will not be senior day in Maples. We are not ASU’s arch rival at their senior day either (before the AZ upset, ASU struggled to beat USC). So I can’t really blame anyone for considering that game a lock.

    The fact is that, play-in game or not, if the Bears win their first game of the P-12 tourney, it will be a shock if they don’t get an at-large NCAA bid. And there would have to be a collapse on a level that is unprecedented in the Monty era for the Bears not to get that first win.

    Then again, you know what the wiseguys say: Don’t bet against something just because it’s never happened before.

  • Takeoffthatredshirt

    I feel the same way I did before the Stanford game: proud of this team for playing to the best of their ability.

    I certainly feel smarter than the guy calling for our hall of fame coach to be fired for a guy with a 480 SAT score (allegedly 4th try) while we were chasing out 2nd title in 3 years.

    Seems like part of you is rooting against Cal. Please nurture that feeling and consider a different team’s fan board.

  • 1brsfan

    I agree with Esquire. We’re not a shoo in but we’re also not in the play in-game as of today. Palm’s projections are based on what would happen if the selections happened today and I think he’s way off. He’s been known to have an east coast bias so I’m not surprised to see all of the west coast teams projected with such low seeds. If you look at bracket project you can see Cal’s projection from 90+ “experts” and they are a solid 10 seed based on the average.


  • Esquire, when you write “aside from the Bears’ rubbery legs in general, there is nothing to suggest that Cal is vulnerable to the Stanford/ASU winner in LA,” you are saying Cal is a lock. You are saying the only reason Cal lost was because the game was at Maples on Senior night.

    Well, thank goodness. I guess the team can relax, go to play with the same effort of their last 2 games and have a win and a bid in the bag. [Of course, if Cal loses, you can claim it only happened because their seniors were playing to keep their season going as Stanfurd does not have the post season currently on their radar.]


    The point has been brought up regarding current bracketologist guesses, but they are as of now. A third straight loss would be more damaging than simply adding another loss to the record. Remember, how a team plays down the stretch does come into account, which will make Cal very vulnerable compared to any teams that have a win streak going into their conference tourneys.

    Not the best analogy, but it kinda fits – I feel like I am yelling at Tedford to make sure Riley knows to throw the ball away with the clock winding down, while many Cal fans are already cheering for their #1 ranked football team, cheering for Riley to run up the middle for a touchdown.

  • SteveNTEXAS

    Take off 1. Many teams could qualify for playing to the “best of their ability”.

    Are you saying losing to Colorado RPI 83 sagarin 92) and out of the top 100 RPI Stanford is the best of our ability? That would mean you think we stink.

    Yoda you always seem to duck questions about Indiana- as your comments last year that Cal is the better program. Read the rankings this year ( a lower number means a higher ranking).

    I’m far from bitter-just disappointed with some teams (Sam HOuston State,UTEP and Cal somewhat), happy with others North Texas and elated with IU’s turnaround.

  • Esquire Joe

    WC, don’t get me wrong. My point was that I DON’T think the Stan/ASU game is a foregone conclusion. However, you have to look realistically at how much less than 100% the Bears’ chances of winning are. I know it’s folly to try to argue using hypotheticals, but I believe that, if last Sunday’s game was on a neutral court, without the Stanford crowd and senior day hype, all other things being equal, Cal wins that game. And I don’t believe that’s a crazy wild proclamation.

    So, is Cal a LOCK to win one more and make it to the NCAA tourney? No. But they’re damn close to a lock, and as I said before, if they manage to lose on Thursday, it will be a collapse greater than any we’ve seen in the Monty era.

    Seriously, has a Montgomery-coached Bears team ever lost to an opponent as far beneath them as Stan/ASU other than a conference road loss? Maybe the ’09 home loss to OSU? Even that was to a post-season team (albeit the CBI).

  • ConcordBear

    The Bears played soft in their last two losses, not rising to the challenge or able to match the other teams intensity.
    Cal needs to iron some things out this week and get everyone back on the same page.
    Thursday is a huge game and all teams other than washington are going to play for their lives because a loss likely ends ncaa chances for everyone.
    Go hard after that Pac tourney title Bears!
    Never been won by a Cal team before.

  • SteveNTEXAS

    We can redeem ourselves by winning that tourney. I just try to be realistic – I hate the letdown when we start thinking we are too good and lose to a mediocre team and then a lousy one.

    During this part of the season momentum is crucial and the best coaches have their team peaking. How much confidence can we have going into the NCAA with these kinds of losses?