Basketball: Pepperdine preview

TIPOFF: 6:30 p.m. Tuesday at Haas Pavilion. TV/Radio: Pac-12 Networks/910 AM.

The Bears take on another non-conference opponent that likely will be a bit overmatched. Cal has more size and experience than the Waves, not to mention a different level of talent.

But there are issues coach Mike Montgomery needs his team to address during the early portion of its schedule. The Bears allowed 19 offensive rebounds in their 78-65 season-opening win over Cal State Bakersfield, after giving up 17 in an exhibition win over San Francisco State.

“Somehow, someway we’ve got to shore that up, got to get people involved,” Montgomery said after the Bakersfield win. “We’ve got some big guys who just stand, do not react well off the floor. David Kravish worked pretty hard, but he was pretty much by himself. That’s a concern.”

The Bears also coughed up 18 turnovers against a Bakersfield lineup that is similar in size to what they will see Tuesday night. “That’s obviously too many,” Montgomery said.

It’s early and this is what these games are for, but Montgomery wants to begin to see some of the sore spots addressed.

“We know we have a long ways to go. We know we have to get better,” he said. “Defensive rebounding allows us to get out on the break. Getting our depth situation solved, so in tough games we have 7-8-9 guys we can win with.”

He may have one more option beginning Tuesday night. Sophomore guard Ricky Kreklow, a transfer from Missouri who was projected as a starter, could see his first action of the season.

Kreklow had foot surgery in early October and is practicing without pain or limitations, Montgomery said. He expects to use the 6-foot-6 wing in a limited role against the Waves.

There were good things in the opener. Allen Crabbe and Justin Cobbs combined for 49 points on 19-for-28 shooting. Crabbe made all four of his 3-pointers in the first half, when the offense produced 45 points.

“There were some bright spots,” Montgomery said. “The ball was moving, we were finding the open guy.”

THE SERIES: The Bears lead 1-0. Cal won 61-58 during the 2004-05 season. The Waves are 25-42 all-time vs. current members of the Pac-12, although they never have faced Arizona, Oregon, Oregon State, Stanford or Washington.

ON THE WAVES: Under second-year coach and Pepperdine alum Marty Wilson, the Waves were 10-19 last season, 4-12 and seventh in the nine-team West Coast Conference. They beat just two teams with winning records a year ago.  The Waves are picked seventh again by both Athlon and Lindy’s magazines.

Pepperdine lost 81-75 at Cal State Northridge in its season opener. Their biggest problem against CSUN was 23 turnovers, 15 of them by their three starting guards. Pepperdine was last in the WCC last season in scoring (59.3 ppg) and field-goal accuracy (39.6 percent).

Senior G Loren Jackson, who had 16 points, six rebounds, six assists and six turnovers in the opener, is back after missing last season with an ACL injury. He averaged 13.2 ppg in 2010-11. The Waves start true freshmen at both forward spots and have no starter taller than 6-7.

ETC: Tuesday night’s game is the Bears’ last at home until Dec. 9 against UNLV. They play their next five games on the road or at neutral sites . . . Crabbe ranks ninth on Cal’s career 3-point baskets list with 149. Next up is Randy Duck with 153 . . . Cal is 30-3 in non-conference games under Montgomery . . . The Bears started 2-0 in each of Montgomery’s first four seasons.

WHAT’S NEXT: Cal plays Friday at Denver. Tipoff is 5 p.m. PST.

Cal (1-0)

Starters Ht Yr Pts Rebs
SF Allen Crabbe 6-6 Jr. 27.0 3.0
PF Richard Solomon 6-10 Jr. 8.0 9.0
PF David Kravish 6-9 So. 4.0 9.0
SG Justin Cobbs 6-2 Jr. 22.0 3.0*
PG Brandon Smith 5-11 Sr. 5.0 5.0*
Key reserves
G Tyrone Wallace 6-3 Fr. 6.0 3.0*
C Robert Thurman 6-10 Sr. 6.0 5.0
F Christian Behrens 6-9 So. 0.0 1.0


Pepperdine (0-1)

Starters Ht Yr Pts Rebs
PF Adam Young 6-6 Fr. 9.0 6.0
SF Jett Raines 6-7 Fr. 11.0 5.0
SG Lorne Jackson 6-2 Sr. 16.0 6.0*
SG Jordan Baker 6-4 So. 21.0 6.0
PG Caleb Willis 6-0 Sr. 5.0 6.0*
Key reserves
G Atif Russell 6-4 Fr. 2.0 3.0
G Nikolas Skouen 6-4 Jr. 9.0 1.0
F Moriba De Freitas 6-9 Jr. 2.0 8.0


Jeff Faraudo

  • Mitchie V

    We out-of-towners get to watch Ricky Kreklow debut because the Pac 12 Network is broadcasting.

    Life is good!

  • GoldenBV

    Good move Jeff taking Bak off the key reserves list. He is stronger than last year, but that’s not enough to get him minutes. Still the same tentative, non-aggressive presence. He continues to get burned on defense too. He will take a charge occasionally and can sink a jumper, but that is about it. Behrens wasn’t much better on Sunday, but he at least looks more intense out there.

    When Kreklow is ready to start, that will really help everybody settle into their roles. 8 deep with Smith, Wallace, and Thurman off the bench. Then hope that either Behrens, Johnson, or even Powers could play 10 min/game if needed.