Basketball: Bears add some size with Rooks

The Cal basketball team got what it needed most on Wednesday — size.
On the first day of the spring signing period, the Golden Bears secured 7-foot, 280-pound center Kameron Rooks of Mission Hills High in San Marcos. Rooks oriinally committed to Cal back on Jan. 1.
Rated the nation’s No. 22 center prospect by ESPN, Rooks is the son of Sean Rooks, who played for Arizona two decades ago when Cal coach Mike Montgomery was at Stanford.
“He told me (Montgomery) is a good big man’s coach, he knows how to teach big men the right stuff,” Rooks said of his dad’s input.
“I am happy to have a Rooks on my side for a change after some great battles with his dad through the years,” Montgomery said.
Rooks will be a valuable piece in the Cal frontline. Starting forwards Richard Solomon and David Kravish return, but departing walkon Robert Thurman, who played well in two NCAA tournament games, gave the Bears their only real girth up front.
“I expect to play as hard as I can and be a dominant force inside. That doesn’t have to be scoring. I’m going to try to get rebounds, anything to help the team.”
Montgomery said Rooks “has an unlimited future.”
Rooks joins a strong four-man recruiting class headlined by Jabari Bird, a five-star shooting guard from Salesian-Richmond. Rivals.com has rated the Cal class among the top-20 in the nation.
Cal still has two open scholarships after freshman forward Kaileb Rodriguez decided to transfer. Rodriguez did not play in 2012-13.

Jeff Faraudo

  • The Wisdom Cow

    I still don’t understand why bigs are not lining up to play for Monty, learn, develop, and maximize their draft potential. It’s been how many years since Monty took over? Only now do we hear a father (one that knows what he’s talking about!) say his advice was to play and learn under Monty.

    Not only does he know how to teach them (just look at what Thurman was able to do), when he has a post player that can pass, he feeds the ball to them almost EVERY time down the floor.

    Maybe after Rooks begins to dominate in his Junior year, bigs will again realize Monty is the guy to play for.

  • Gobears49

    We badly need a big third man who is ready to play next year. I doubt Rooks will be ready to fulfill that role, and it is likely, despite my high hopes for him, that Frid will not be able to fill that role next year. As I have said before, Monty should use one or both of the scholarships to get a big man JC transfer who can contribute some decent minutes next year. It’s probably too late to get a center out of high school who can contribute next year. BTW, a Sanders-Frison type player, who transferred to Cal after playing JC ball, would be very nice, but I hope the JC transfer will be taller than Sanders-Frison.

  • SteveNTexas

    Rooks was not well thought of on the Arizona boards -at least at the time he started looking at us.
    We should try for Remy Abell who will transfer from Indiana. Great potential but with IU’s highly touted incoming class his playing time was uncertain.

  • Gobears49

    I’m sure Remy is good, and Cal would be fortunate to get him, but as a transfer from a four year college he would have to sit out a year. I still think we need immediate help next year for a good big man who is good enough then to meaningfully contribute. I think the best way to do that is by getting a good JC transfer, as he can play immediately. We only have four big men (6’9″ or taller) on the roster now anyway, which seems to be a bit low, given we could carry (and I’m guessing now) a 15 man or so active roster (I am looking forward to someone giving me the right number, if there is one)

  • The Wisdom Cow

    Gobears49, I’m pretty sure the college one is leaving can waive the “sitting a year” requirement. They often use it as leverage to get a kid to transfer out of conference (or area, too), letting him play the next season they are sure he won’t be playing against them.

    I may be wrong, but I think some schools have a policy to never waive the year, while others do it on a case by case basis.

  • Gobears49

    Wisdom Cow,

    Never heard of this. Please give me the name of a player who got a waiver to avoid sitting a year. Then I’ll look him up online and post a short statement as to what I’ve found. Thanks in advance.

  • The Wisdom Cow

    From: http://www.ncaa.org/wps/wcm/connect/public/NCAA/Resources/Latest+News/2012/May/Get+the+facts+about+transfers

    Q: Why do football and basketball players have to sit out a year after they transfer?

    A: The year-in-residence is required to help student-athletes adjust to their new school and ensure that their transfer was motivated by academics as well as athletics. Student-athletes who participate in most NCAA sports are eligible for a one-time transfer exception, which allows them to compete immediately after transfer once in their college experience if they meet all other transfer requirements (such as being academically eligible).

    However, student-athletes in sports that are historically academically underperforming – including basketball, football, baseball and men’s ice hockey – are not eligible for the exception. Though student-athletes in these sports can’t compete in their first year at their new school, they can receive an athletics scholarship and practice with the team. A waiver process is available to all student-athletes, and each waiver request is reviewed individually. From April 2011 to April 2012, the NCAA approved 91 transfer waivers and denied 71.


    Now if the last sentence doesn’t make sense (waivers for the “no exceptions” group?), remember, it’s an NCAA site.

  • Gobears49

    Very interesting. It is possible that the waiver rules, and thus the stats, apply to the first paragraph as well as the second paragraph, allowing waivers for sports other than those that have historically underperformed academically for those who don’t meet the requirements of the first paragraph. But more likely the waiver just applies to the second paragraph.


  • The Wisdom Cow

    Kentucky signed 3 more TOP recruits to next years’ class. Marcus Lee, you picked the wrong school.