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Basketball: Bears headed to Dayton

By Jeff Faraudo
Sunday, March 11th, 2012 at 10:39 pm in Basketball, NCAA Tournament.

No, I didn’t begin my vacation.

Been busy writing, doing laundry, making flight reservations and re-packing for Dayton less than 24 hours after returning from from Los Angeles.

Here’s my story on Cal’s unusual NCAA tournament bid and columnist Monte Poole’s take on things.

I’ll be on a plane most of Monday. Will post something later in the day.

Good luck with your NCAA tournament pool selections.

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  • ThisisCal

    Thanks, JF for all of your hard work this season. I know I speak for all Bears fans when I say that your quality of work and dedication to the job are much appreciated.

  • southseasbear

    I agree with ThisisCal and hope you’ll post your own selections bracket as you’ve done in the past.

  • SteveNTEXAS

    Cal and the Pac 12 pretty much got what it deserved -there was a strong argument that Seton Hall which had a much better record vs the Top 50 should have gotten invited.

    Putting that behind us I think Temple is way over-rated and we have a great shot at beating them.

    This is where Monty comes in-teams should be peaking about this time of year.

  • http://thewisdomcow.blogspot.com/ The Wisdom Cow

    Reminder: ESPN Tournament Challenge
    Group Name: Gang BANG

    Testing the meddle of the Bay Area News Group comment section community . . .

    ——————————-

    Steve, I have us over Temple as well. What threw me for a loop was Gottlieb of ESPN picking OHIO to beat Michigan, which would give us a legitimate shot to make the Sweet 16.

    Ain’t fandom great? Any other school, 6 players deep, losing 3 of their last 4 games in a conference with only 2 bids and I would have laughed in the face of a possible Sweet 16 bid. Oh, but it could happen with Cal? I’m in . . .

  • ConcordBear

    Nothing matters once you are in the dance. Slate is wiped completely clean. You either play well, win and advance. Or go home.
    Go Bears!

  • Esquire Joe

    Wow! Am I going to be the voice of reason here?

    Let’s just hope they can get by USF. I’m not saying that they’re not better than the Bulls by a wide margin. It’s just that this team is so out of gas that a double-digit second half deficit even in that first game could send the Bears packing. They simply don’t have the legs to sustain a 40 minute effort, no matter who their opponent is.

    Sure, you give the 2012 Bears circa February this path, and I say we start making the Sweet 16 party plans now. But even assuming they do beat USF, I can’t see them turning around on 2 days rest and beating a very experienced and rested Temple.

    So sad that our 12 seed had to come this year. It truly is an opportunity.

    If they can get a decent second half lead on USF and are able to mix in some reserves, I definitely think they win the play-in. But it will take a Temple fold for the Bears to get to the third (FKA second) round.

    Who knows, though. Harper and Jorge know that these will be their last games for Cal. Maybe the team finds a little bit left in the tank to make one final push.

  • Esquire Joe

    BTW, looks like the wiseguys are on USF. The consensus opening line was Cal minus-3 and was immediately bought down to 2.5.

  • SteveNTEXAS

    I’ll put my criticism of Monty on hold for the tourney. I have doubts about his ability to recruit, to win important games and to motivate his players.

    If Cal wins a few games I will be sated for now. Its not much to ask of a team that was ranked to start the season. I’ve seen Temple play and I’m not impressed. The play-in game is an insult but only if we thrash them. Cal should have something to prove and a 20 point win would prove it. Then on to Temple and perhaps some real accomplishments.

    This is the year -next year Arizona and some others will dominate us.

  • joey

    What time are the games on Wed. and possibly Friday?

  • Takeoffthatredshirt

    Steve-

    Monty’s ability to motivate his players is in question? On what grounds? How many practices have you attended? How many players have you talked to? What a joke.

    And no one gives a crap that your uneducated criticism is “on hold”, but thanks for keeping everyone up to date on that.

    Knowing anything about basketball would help you realize how unrealistic it is to win by 20 against a slow down / defensive team. But I don’t expect that kind of logic / research / intelligent comment from you do don’t worry.

  • Takeoffthatredshirt

    Not going to gripe about Cal’s ridiculous play in game, but ponder this:

    “Vs RPI top 50″ should NOT be used as NCAA selection criteria.

    Drawing a line at #50 makes little sense, especially in statistics. Why does beating the 51st RPI team get you nothing but beating #50 matters? There should be a sliding scale – drawing arbitrary lines at 50 is a mathematicians nightmare.

    This creates those extremely odd situations like: Oregon beating us helps us because we get RPI top 50 wins.

    I realize it’s a semi valid method because lines have to be drawn somewhere, but it’s becoming a more important stat for selection.

    The RPI obsession needs to end.

  • SteveNTEXAS

    takoff-

    I am going to PROVE just how ignorant you are. Mostly you made dumb predictions and enough time goes by so you don’t have to back them up.

    YOu made the statement “Knowing anything about basketball would help you realize how unrealistic it is to win by 20 against a slow down / defensive team.”

    Right – that is your statement?

    This season they Played VCU and LOST 46-69! Count the point differential, or find someone who actually went to Cal to do it for you. We are as good as VCU ( most would say better).

    The next game they played a better team than us -Kansas but lost 42-70. Go ahead and count the numbers. Hint its easier if you round it off to 40 and then it would be a 30 point victory – afterwards subtract 2)

    They also played Georgetown and lost 45-75 and lost 47-67 to Marquette. They probably would have lost to Auburn by 20 also but scored some late baskets to cut it to a 12 pt deficit.

    LOL so who is ignorant now? ( You’ll probably go hide for a few days or change your screen name and then come back with another dumb accusation).

  • Takeoffthatredshirt

    That really proves nothing. We aren’t as good as those teams this year, except maybe VCU, and they went to the final four. And they run a faster offense. And that game was at VCU, not a neutral site.

    So comparing Cal’s expected margin of victory to top level teams is pointless. South Florida is a solid team. It would be shocking for Cal to win by more than 15 and the experts in Vegas think it will be very close and low scoring.

    You generally set the bar at an insane level expecting blue chip recruits and more than 24 wins to have a ‘good season’. Cal basketball is on it’s way up but its not UK, or even IU and it never has been.

    It sucks the bears are in this game but in no way is it the referendum on Monty you wish it were. Monty has brought the best basketball to Cal since Newell (unless you include the years Cal paid for players).

    And I don’t think I’ve ever run away from our fun little chats. Usually you’re the one that ignores my questions, like the question on the evidence for your criticism on Monty’s ability to motivate.

  • http://thewisdomcow.blogspot.com/ The Wisdom Cow

    takeoff,

    In truth, some of Braun’s teams would have wiped the floor with this squad. The conference (and mid-level quality teams in general, #15-30) have dropped in quality dramatically in the age of the one and done players.

    I’m in no way down on Monty, but his 4th year team having this thin of a roster is definitely a large blemish on what has otherwise been excellent coaching, and I am still astonished that he has not been able to bring in large bodies to coach up. MSF has really been it, and he was a transfer.

  • SteveNTEXAS

    If you don’t think we are better than VCU you don’t think much of Cal. Your point was their slow tempo game precluded 20 point victories yet they lost 4 by more than 20 one by 30.

    As for the evidence of Monty’s not being able to motivate the team, read the latest analysis by CBS who ranks us 47th saying “The Bears are not hot” When a team ends a season losing the regular season championship to a team not ranked in the top 100 and then losing to an 88th ranked team – that is pretty sad, however as you proved you either can’t count or you will lie about it, perhaps you think we actually won those games.

  • SteveNTEXAS

    BY the way Takeoff -as to your slow tempo remarks – powerhouse Marist scored 69 against them. Old Dominion beat them scoring 68 and they aren’t an NIT or NCAA team and 4-14 (conf) Providence scored 78 in a close loss. You also forgot Auburn which easily could have beaten them by 20 but when the game was out of reach they used subs and USF narrowed the score a bit.

    Will you whine that they are all better than Cal too?

    You’ve proved both your ignorance and lack of integrity and now for your reading comprehension. I said a 20 point win by Cal would show how much of an insult the play-in game was – it was not a prediction.
    It is clearly possible if Monty motivates us, but I’d probably settle for 15 point victory. In fact I’d settle for less if it means Cal will be able to rotate its players and get everyone into the game.

  • SteveNTEXAS

    Here’s something else that bothers me aside from Moren & Takeoff.

    Recruiting:

    Arizona now has the #1 class but three of its recruits are from CALIFORNIA -one from Oakland. Oregon UCLA and Stanford also have better recruits and Oregon stole one from Cal.

    When Indiana was in the dumps and hired Crean he made it priority #1 to win the instate recruiting battles with Purdue, Notre Dame and other Big Ten schools. This has been done and IU has the 2nd best class. We need someone who can keep home court and get us the best recruits in our own backyard (for starters).

    We have a beautiful campus, a large media market, and we offer excellent academics. Why should these schools out-recruit us?

  • Juancho

    Whats up with takeoff ?

    Steventexas draws a lot of water in this town. You dont draw …

    Hope someone got the big lebowski reference

  • SteveNTEXAS

    Juancho I shouldn’t engage with Moren & takeoff.

    I just see our program a bit differently and I’m concerned that we are heading in the wrong direction. When I first stated this almost everyone disagreed but we barely got in to the NCAAs. Next year is going to be worse and with two poor recruiting classes, what can we say for the future?

    To be concerned or worried about Cal does not make me less of a fan, anymore than protesting the war in Iraq made me less of an American.

    I love Cal and wear my Cal stuff all over Texas and use it as an example when I was on our school board and in editorials I have written. I just see our program going in the wrong direction.

    I have nothing personal against Monty even if he coached Stanford. He has lots of integrity and will never get us a sanction, but I want to WIN. I’m getting old and want to see an NCAA Banner! The Monty of 2012 won’t get us one.

  • http://Capitolgoldbuyers.com BlakeStreetBear

    Monty is fine. Had zhang stayed and solomon been eligible this season’s team would be approaching 27-28 wins, pac12 champs. Had amoke been eligible and christopher not elbowed in the eye we coulda hung w duke in ’10. This team has played some excellent and very entertaining basketball for much of the season. We could use a deeper bench, yes. I still think we can get to the 2nd week of the tourney. Or we could lose the first game by 20. Its sports, and Cal is an *interesting* team for which to root, to say the least. Irregardless, Go Bears!

  • covinared

    Monty needs to go on twitter…..

  • rob bear

    A lot of what ifs will be what I remember most about this team and it is sad that Harper and Jorge did not get that 2nd Conference title. Bottom line, our bench did not develop (Bak & Smith), Solomon was irresponsible and when we had to win on the road in conference play, we failed. Now we are playing in a lose and your out tourney. You have a chance to redeem and show the world what CAL and PAC 12 Basketball is all about Bears! Show them what you got! Through thick and thin, we are going to support you guys! Beat U of Florida WITH EXTREME PREJUDICE!