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Basketball: Cobbs on Cousy Award watch list

Cal senior Justin Cobbs has been named to the 50-player preseason watch list for the Bob Cousy Award, given to college basketball’s top point guard.

Cobbs enters the senior season as the Pac-12 Conference’s active career assist leader with 327 assists in only 67 games over two seasons at Cal.

A transfer from Minnesota following his freshman season, Cobbs owns a 4.9 career assist-per-game average, which ranks fourth all-time at Cal.

At Pac-12 media day last week, Cobbs told me one of his goals this season is to dish at least 200 assists and chase Jason Kidd’s single-season school record of 272. Only three times in Cal history — Kidd twice, Keith Smith once — has a Cal player totaled 200 assists in a season.

Cobbs last season was among the Pac-12 leaders in scoring (10th, 15.1 ppg.), assists (4th, 4.8 apg.), free throw percentage (4th, .841) and assist-to-turnover ratio (6th, 1.5) last season. His .822 career free-throw percentage is seventh-best in school history entering his senior season.

Cobbs started all 33 games last season for the Golden Bears’ 21-12 squad that finished second in the Pac-12 and advanced to the third round of the NCAA Tournament.

He led Cal (or tied) in scoring eight times with double-figures in the scoring column in 28 contests. Cobbs averaged 6.0 assists over his final eight games of the season.

Others nominated for the Cousy award include Cobbs’ Pac-12 rivals Jahii Carson of Arizona State, Kyle Anderson of UCLA, Spencer Dinwiddie of Colorado, Dominic Artis of Oregon and Nigel Williams-Goss of Washington.

Jeff Faraudo