37

Basketball: Oregon game preview

TIPOFF: 6 p.m. Thursday at Matthew Knight Arena, Eugene, Ore. TV/Radio: ESPN2/910-AM.

Four days after “The Shove” kidnapped the spotlight from a Cal team that has won five of six games, the Golden Bears’ ability to focus will be tested as perhaps never before.

Cal visits Pac-12 Conference leader Oregon on Thursday night, and cannot afford to be sidetracked by anything related to coach Mike Montgomery’s sideline push of star junior Allen Crabbe against USC.

The Ducks will be eager to avenge a 58-54 loss in Berkeley 19 days ago, and they are at home, where they’ve lost just once in 16 games this season.

Cal has shown an improved ability to sharpen its focus in recent high-profile games, elevating its play in wins over Arizona and UCLA.

Thursday night’s game involves all sorts of baggage the players must discard. Crabbe said the team will concentrate solely on the game itself.

“It is the focus,” he said. “Nobody cares about the situation. It’s over with. It’s in the past.”

Montgomery, who received a reprimand from the Pac-12 office and offered private and public apologies to Crabbe and his players, is anxious for a return to normalcy.

“The team’s pretty positive right now. They don’t seem to have much of an issue with it,” he said. “We have a good enough relationship. They know me well enough.”

Crabbe said defense will be critical.

“Keep playing as a team, trusting each other on the offensive end and defensive end,” Crabbe said. “Defense has won the games for us.”

So have Crabbe and backcourt mate Justin Cobbs, who combined for 45 points in Sunday’s win over USC.

“Anytime you have two of the best guards in the in the league — if not the two best guards in the league — you’ve got a chance in every ballgame, which they do,” Oregon coach Dana Altman said.

“When those two guys get it going, they can play with anybody.”

ABOUT THE DUCKS: The No. 23 Ducks still seem unlikely to have the services of freshman PG Dominic Artis (10.2 ppg), who has missed the past seven games with a left foot injury. Oregon coach Dana Altman has been vague about the nature of the injury or a timetable for Artis’ return, but senior E.J. Singler said last week that the one-time Salesian HS star has a stress fracture and would be out another week or two. Artis was wearing a protective boot on Tuesday. … The Ducks have won three in a row after losing three straight, a drought that began with defeats at Stanford and Cal. … Oregon is 15-1 at home this season, losing 48-47 to Colorado on Feb. 7. … Altman needs one victory for No. 600 in his career. His Division I record is 476-276 in 24 seasons at Marshall, Kansas State, Creighton and UO.

THE SERIES: Cal leads 81-55. The Bears have won all 10 matchups with Oregon since Montgomery became coach at Cal before the 2008-09 season, including a 58-54 victory over then-No. 10 Oregon in Berkeley on Feb. 2. 

ETC: Two-time reigning Pac-12 Player of the Week Allen Crabbe, with 1,424 career points, is 14 points shy of moving past Russ Critchfield (1966-68) and into the No. 10 spot on Cal’s career scoring list. … Five of Crabbe’s past six 20-point games have come on the road. … Now No. 53 in the RPI computer rankings, Cal is 6-9 against teams rated in the top 100 of the RPI. Oregon sits at No. 38.

WHAT’S NEXT: Cal plays Oregon State on Saturday at Gill Coliseum, Corvallis, Ore. Tipoff is 3 p.m.

Cal (16-9, 8-5 Pac-12)

Starters Ht Yr Pts Rebs
SG Allen Crabbe 6-6 Jr. 19.8 5.7
PF Richard Solomon 6-10 Jr. 8.6 6.5
PF David Kravish 6-9 So. 8.4 7.0
PG Justin Cobbs 6-2 Jr. 14.8 4.5*
SG Tyrone Wallace 6-3 Fr. 7.0 4.6
Key reserves
G Brandon Smith 5-11 Sr. 2.8 2.1*
C Robert Thurman 6-10 Sr. 4.8 3.8
F Bak Bak 6-9 Sr. 1.9 1.0

Oregon (21-5, 10-3 Pac-12)

Starters Ht Yr Pts Rebs
C Tony Woods 6-11 Sr. 9.7 3.5
PF Arsalan Kazemi 6-7 Sr. 8.8 9.6
SF E.J. Singler 6-6 Sr. 11.8 5.0
SG Damyean Dotson 6-5 Fr. 11.5 4.0
PG Johnathan Loyd 5-8 Jr. 3.6 2.5*
Key reserves
F Carlos Emory 6-5 Sr. 10.4 4.4
C Waverly Austin 6-11 Jr. 3.9 3.0
F Ben Carter 6-8 Fr. 2.5 2.4

*Assists

Jeff Faraudo

  • wehofx

    I have a good feeling the team really has put The Shove behind them and are the stronger for it: “It’s over with. It’s in the past.”

    Go Bears! Beat pku!

  • BlakeStreetBear

    Get ‘er done Bears!! Roast the ducks!

    Its great to be very excited about this team after practically giving up on any NCAA hopes just a few weeks ago…Monty is the man!

  • The Wisdom Cow

    This is the game that can get them off the bubble and really solidify an NCAA birth opportunity. Granted, a win doesn’t mean their in and a loss doesn’t mean out, but it would be huge for RPI and really make a statement that the team is finishing the year strong, which still matters for both bubble standing and a team’s seeding, I believe.

    Let’s see the intensity. You KNOW the quackers will be squawking away.

    IMPORTANT SAFETY NOTE – keep a small stick, or better yet, large piece of hard, non-toxic rubber handy while the game is on, to prevent choking and/or dental damage. It’s not just you who may suffer a seizure from the autistic (oops, “artistic”) court as the TV camera pans, it’s your loved ones or anyone else that happens to view the screen at the wrong moment.

  • SteveNTexas

    My guess is the team- the kids are way past the incident, they should be roaring to play.

  • Rollonubears

    Does Cobbs need a shove?

  • Juancho

    I feel like solomon needs a shove.

  • Joey

    No surprise some really bad officiating early.

  • Joey

    The foul calls on cranbbe are bullshit.

  • Juancho

    If zach kline were on this team wed be up.

  • Rollonubears

    Why can’t this team just get pumped for every game? Totally lifeless out there.

  • The Wisdom Cow

    Este no es bueno.

    If it were at home, I’d get the student section to start shoving each other, all of them, almost flashmob-ish. Think that would wake up the players.

    [Pick your player] looks into the stands during a time out and sees bodies flying everywhere. He wonders initially if it is some huge fight, only to realize everyone is smiling while they poke each other in the hands firmly, a la Monty-Crabbe-gate. He smiles, puts up a hand to the student section, nodding, and says, “Ok, ok. I get it. Wake the [explicative] up.”

  • Rollonubears

    This is ugly basketball. I guess they don’t want to make the tourney. Totally abandoned the inside game.

  • Joey

    Crabbe getting mugged no calls. Crabbe touches a player and he gets called for fouls. Call it the same both ways refs. REFS YOU SUCK!

  • Joey

    Will Smith make a 3 point basket ever again?

  • Rollonubears

    Monty needs to do something about smith and his confidence, or just don’t put him in. Fouls, turnovers and wide open missed threes. Killing us. 6th man should provide a spark. I feel like the officiating has been pretty fair, we’re just playing stupid. And to have a guy leave Ben brauns team and grab 13 rebounds in a half against us is just sad.

  • The Wisdom Cow

    Smith is healthy!

  • The Wisdom Cow

    No blood, no foul, unless Uncle Phil beeps them on the play.

    I can’t believe how much contact is being allowed. How have ANY fouls been called?

  • Rollonubears

    Ok, borat has fouled crabbe 3x now with no call. That’s pretty bad.

  • CalBearister

    Someone should shove every single official in this joke of a conference. I’d say execute them all, but you can’t give the death penalty to people with IQs under 80.

  • Joey

    Close game considering horrendous officiating. How much does crabbe have to be bumped and grabbed to get a call. Anyone saying crabbe isn’t playing or the officiating is fair is blind. Will Oregon get called for their reach-in fouls. Apparently not.

  • The Wisdom Cow

    Have to admit, it’s very promising to be only down by 5 at the half. This one is going to be all on the refs, IMO. If they keep allowing everything like they did the last 6 minutes or so, Cal can play physical and win this.

    The fear is that the refs will be inconsistent, causing players to play soft fearing fouls while Oregon continues to mug the ball handler.

    I don’t really believe Pac 12 refs are dirty, they just are not good. However, when they allow crazy physical play for a half, and Oregon seemed to know it from the start (Cal having some key ticky tack fouls make them take 13+ minutes to start pushing back), it really makes me wonder if this game shouldn’t be reviewed with an eye towards impropriety.

  • rollonubears

    At least this year, we finally started getting some calls at home. I think the refs are just scared to call fouls against the home team, for fear of getting booed or yelled at. It’s amazing how psychological the job is. There really aren’t that many good officials available out there. I still like to complain though. Bottom line is that we played like a high school team out there for about 10 minutes, and that isn’t going to cut it on the road. Not enough team leadership here. Not sure what will happen if crabbe leaves. Regardless, he needs to take more of a role right now. Solomon is more of leader, at this point, in my opinion.

  • rollonubears

    This year, we finally started getting some calls at home. I think the refs are just scared to call fouls against the home team, for fear of getting booed or yelled at. It’s amazing how psychological the job is. There really aren’t that many good officials available out there. I still like to complain though. Bottom line is that we played like a high school team out there for about 10 minutes, and that isn’t going to cut it on the road. Not enough team leadership here. Not sure what will happen if crabbe leaves. Regardless, he needs to take more of a role right now. Solomon is more of leader, at this point, in my opinion.

  • Joey

    I don’t think the PAC 10 refs are dirty except for Greencrap who is clearly biased against Monty. But the pac10 refs are the worst in NCAA basketball. I’ve seen them screw up WCC and WAC games regularly. I don’t know if it is a budget issue or what but they need to be replaced with better personnel.

  • Joey

    Now they are calling ridiculous fouls on Kravish.

  • Rollonubears

    Kravish appears to have given up

  • The Wisdom Cow

    I’d bet on a dirty ref tonight. The 4th on Crabbe was criminal, and they damn well knew it was his 4tth. They get together and one of them doubled down on giving the call to the wrong player, the star player. Let me guess. The ref has a nice pair of Nikes on.

  • CalBearister

    Three Blind Mice. Three Blind Mice. See how they officiate. All in the Pac-12.

    That entire crew should be fired. How you call Crabbe for his 4th on a foul that was clearly on Wallace is beyond me. Idiots.

  • Joey

    Refs just gave the game to Oregon. I’m turning this crap off. Not worth my time.

  • Rollonubears

    This is sad. Come on bears. 5 on 7 as usual

  • The Wisdom Cow

    This is just horrid officiating. I wonder if JF can get the skinny on the reversal of the Crabbe foul. Did the league step in because it was so blatant. I thought those mistakes could not be fixed once play began again.

    Now, the same contact is a foul on Cal, a turnover by Cal when O does it. This is crap.

  • CalBearister

    Kazemi has a lovely career with the Spurs ahead of him. Master of Flop.

  • The Wosdom Cow

    I can’t believe there was no foul on Cal when the two Ducks collided!

    Still no calls as Kravish is mugged after he gets the rebound!

    Now take the LAST shot! Don’t shoot until 4 seconds or less!

  • Rollonubears

    Wow! Just wow! Redemption and justice all in one play. What a great finish. Go Bears!!

  • The Wisdom Cow

    YES!

    That is how you do it with the last possession in a tied game.

    That one should be worth 1.4 games, our 5 beating Nike’s 7.

  • 1brsfan

    Very quiet walking out of Matt Arena! Basking in glory! Go Bears!

  • BlueNGold

    Suck it, Phil!