Basketball: Yes, there are games this week

Imagine this scenario: Cal and Saint Mary’s meet in Dayton, Ohio, in a March 19 first-round game in the NCAA tournament, with the winner advancing to the San Jose regional.

A tantalizing prospect?

Absolutely, and not altogether far-fetched, according to ESPN.com “bracketologist” Joe Lunardi, who projected that matchup as recently as last weekend.

Lunardi’s vision — suggesting they would battle for a No. 12 seed — points to the delicate state of both teams’ postseason hopes. Neither is a lock to make the NCAA field, but both can control their own fate.

How it all unfolds for the Bears and Gaels will continue to take shape this week with each team facing a pair of significant games:

Cal hits the road to face Pac-12 leader Oregon on Thursday night, and then visits Oregon State on Saturday. They are the final two road games of the league schedule for the Bears.

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Jeff Faraudo