Basketball: Dayton blasts Bears in Maui

Justin Cobbs scored a career-high 31 points, but Cal was overpowered 82-64 by Dayton in the third-place game of the Maui Invitational.

David Kravish had another solid game, contributing 12 points, 14 rebounds and five blocked shots. The junior forward averaged 15.3 points in the three-game event.

“We came out and they were just busting our butts from the get-go,” Kravish said. “They were playing way harder than us from the beginning.

“I think we recognized that toward the end of the first half we started playing harder and got it marginally closer, but in the second half they kept the tempo up and they were beating us up and down the floor.”

The Bears (5-2) played a second straight game without senior forward Richard Solomon, who suffered a corneal abrasion two days ago and watched the game from the bench.

It was a tough night for freshman Jabari Bird, who shot 1 for 7 and scored just six points.

Coach Mike Montgomery was impressed by the Flyers.

“That’s a good basketball team,” he said. “They were obviously very well prepared. They were fired up. I think they were probably a little bit upset with yesterday and losing (to Baylor) and giving up a lead. They were the better team today and clearly the more aggressive team.”

Dayton (6-2) turned the ball over just four times and had a 52-8 edge in bench scoring.

 “I’d just assume they left their starters in to be honest with you. They killed us off the bench,” Montgomery said. “They had 15 fast breakpoints; we had
zero. You cannot win a basketball game if you don’t run a break and get some points off the break.”

Cobbs was selected to the all-tournament team.

Cal returns to action at home against UC Irvine.


Football: Goff has successful shoulder surgery

Cal freshman quarterback Jared Goff underwent successful surgery Wednesday to repair a right shoulder separation he sustained in the Bears’ 63-13 season-ending loss at Stanford in the Big Game.

Goff, who set a Cal single-season record with 3,508 passing yards, is expected to be fully recovered in time for Cal’s spring workouts.

“We are pleased that Jared is expected to make a full recovery and be back on the field for spring ball,” Cal coach Sonny Dykes said. “We have confidence he can build on the promising campaign he had in his first season at Cal.”

Goff was injured on a hit by Stanford linebacker Shayne Skov midway through the second quarter on Saturday.

The Marin native broke Cal’s single-game record with 504 yards against Washington State and became the second Pac-12 quarterback with three games of at least 450 yards. He threw 18 touchdowns this fall.


Football: Academic honors for Bears

Offensive linemen Chris Adcock and Mark Brazinski were named to the All-Pac-12 Academic first-team, the conference announced.

Adcock, a junior center, made the team for the second time after compiling a 3.54 grade-point average as a business administration major. Brazinski, a grad student, has a 3.58 GPA in legal studies and information management systems.

Cal players named to the second team were offensive tackle Christian Okafor (3.35/undeclared), defensive lineman Ted Agu (3.28/public health) and linebacker Hardy Nickerson (3.36/undeclared).

Given honorable mention status were defensive end Todd Barr, offensive tackle Alejandro Crosthwaite, placekicker Vincenzo D’Amato, cornerback Cedric Dozier, punter Cole Leininger and wide receiver Bryce Treggs.


Basketball: Syracuse pulls away from Cal, but Golden Bears earn respect of Boeheim


Ultimately, short-handed Cal could not hold off No. 8 Syracuse, which took charge in the second half and claimed a 92-81 win in the semifinals of the Maui Invitational.

The Bears (5-1) will play in Wednesday’s third-place game against Dayton (5-1), which lost 67-66 to Baylor in the other semifinal.

No one was more impressed by the Bears than Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim, whose club beat Cal 66-60 in the NCAA tournament at San Jose last March.

“First of all, we saw just a different team. I thought watching Cal yesterday that their team this year is much better than last year’s team,” Boeheim said.

“I thought they battled their tails off, and it took a long time for us to get a solid run out of the offensive end. They were unbelievable today.

“I didn’t even know how good until I looked at the stat sheet. I knew they were pretty good, but they were better. It was a really good battle.”

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Basketball: Richard Solomon to miss Syracuse game with corneal abrasion to right eye

Cal senior forward Richard Solomon has been medically ruled out for the Golden Bears’ game against No. 8 Syracuse this afternoon in the semifinals of the Maui Invitational.

Solomon sustained a right corneal abrasion in the second half of Monday’s 85-77 victory over Arkansas.

He has averaged 11.0 ppg. and 11.4 rpg. in Cal’s first five contests this season. Solomon had started the previous 22 games and appeared in the last 38 contests for the Bears entering Tuesday.

He scored 22 points in Cal’s NCAA tournament loss to Syracuse last season.

Solomon had 11 points, seven rebounds and a pair of blocks in 20 minutes of action in the victory against the Razorbacks.


Football: Cal to face Oregon at new Levi’s Stadium in Friday night game next season

The Cal football team will play at the 49ers’ new Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara next season, after all.

But the opponent will be Oregon, not Stanford.

The Golden Bears and the Santa Clara Stadium Authority announced Tuesday the Bears and Ducks will stage the first college football game at the new stadium on Friday, Oct. 24 of next season.

Cal had explored the possibility of playing the Big Game at Levi’s Stadium next season, but shelved the proposal because of sharp reaction from fans and alumni.

“Playing the first college football game at Levi’s Stadium provides an exceptional opportunity for our student-athletes, alumni, students and fans to be some of the first to experience the new venue, one that will soon play host to a Super Bowl,” Cal athletic director Sandy Barbour said in a statement.

Levi’s Stadium is scheduled to open for the 2014 football season as the new home for the 49ers. The $1.2 billion facility seats 68,500 and will serve as the site for Super Bowl L in 2016 and the annual Fight Hunger Bowl beginning next year.

“I know that our players will embrace the chance to play Oregon at Levi’s Stadium next fall, and I’m sure our fans will create a great atmosphere for our team,” Cal coach Sonny Dykes said. “This is a special opportunity to play in a stadium where the Super Bowl will be held in the near future and one that we feel can generate a tremendous overall experience for everyone involved.”

The Cal-Oregon contest will be televised nationally by either ESPN or FOX, with the network to be designated at a later date.

Barbour also said the move to Santa Clara gives the university administration the ability to study the effects of weeknight games and develop solutions for hosting games under those circumstances in Berkekey.

TICKET INFORMATION: Cal season-ticket holders will have the opportunity to opt-in to purchase seats to the Cal-Oregon game in addition to the six-game Memorial Stadium package.

Full season-ticket holders will be able to purchase tickets to the Cal-Oregon game at a special discounted rate, and ESP members will receive complimentary tickets and parking equivalent to their normal allocation.

Cal students will have access to tickets at a significant discount and complimentary transportation to the game. Specific inventory has been reserved for Levi’s Stadium Builders License (SBL) holders who, along with suite holders, will have access to tickets prior to the general public for this event.


Football: Dykes’ post-morten leftovers

More from Sonny Dykes season-ending news conference on Monday:

On the profile of players he wants to recruit:

“I don’t feel any differently now than I did the day I got hired. Cal’s not for everybody. That was my stance before I got the job. You need to recruit people who can be successful here and, most importantly, people who appreciate that. Somebody who wants to be here and has an academic background to be successful here and is obviously a good football player. It can be done.”


His reaction to the suggestion he’d said the Bears didn’t have the talent to compete this season, Dykes responded:

“Never said we didn’t have the horses. Just said we didn’t do a very good job of coaching them. You have to draw your own conclusions. We’ve got plenty of horses — the fact is they’re young. They’ll get better. Our job’s to coach them. Obviously, we didn’t coach them to play to their potential — nowhere close to that.”


On whether there are worries that failing to win a Pac-12 game will make it more difficult to sell his vision to his players:

“Sure there is, there’s always concern. It’s like when you go to the doctor and you get a shot and you feel better the next day. You feel like this guy knows what he’s talking about.”


On where Freddie Tagaloa and Matt Cochran fit into the offensive line picture after both were moved to new positions midseason:

“Both of them we think have a chance to be good players. It’s a hard thing what Freddie went through, going from a guy we thought was really going to play well. We felt like we needed to make a position change for us to be successful. Cochran’s probably a guard, but somebody has to play tackle.”


On where he envisions freshman strong safety eventually playing:

“He started as a corner. We moved him to safety Week 3. He’s potentially a corner.”


On which scout team players most impressed him this season:

“(Wide receiver) Trevor Davis had a good year. (Receiver) Ray Hudson, (defensive end) Ray Davison. Once (cornerback Darius) Allensworth got healthy, he looked good. (Cornerback) Trey Cheek looked good.

“All the offensive linemen showed some signs — especially (Aaron) Cochran. Caleb Coleman’s move (to cornerback) is permanent.”


Football: Dykes says he won’t make coaching staff changes merely to appease fans

Acknowledging his debut season “wasn’t much of a honeymoon,” Cal football coach Sonny Dykes said the process of trying to get better after an historically bad 1-11 season already is under way.

End-of-season interviews with players began Monday and coaches will be on the road recruiting starting next Monday.

But two days after a record-setting 63-13 loss to Stanford in the 116th Big Game, Dykes said he won’t make changes to his coaching staff merely to appease frustrated fans.

Dykes gave defensive coordinator Andy Buh a vote of confidence for the second straight week following a season in which the Bears allowed a record 45.9 points per game, but also played much of the schedule without five would-be defensive starters.

“If you did things for appearances, all you would do is try to win today,” Dykes said. “Building a program is about doing things the right way over a long term. In coaching, it’s funny how you get dumb really fast, then how  guys get smart again really fast.”

Buh has a three-year contract which gaurantees him his salary for all three if he’s fired without cause. That means he’d collect a total of $1 million due him for the 2014 and ’15 seasons if let go.

Asked if finances would allow him to make changes he deems necessary, Dykes said, “I would think so.”

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Basketball: Kravish leads Cal past Arkansas; Bears prep for rematch with NCAA conqueror Syracuse

Junior forward David Kravish had 19 points, 15 rebounds and four blocked shots and Cal (5-0) won its opener at the Maui Invitational, beating Arkansas 85-77.

UPDATED: The Bears will play Syracuse in the tournament semifinals Tuesday at 4 p.m. PST on ESPN. The No. 8 Orange, who knocked Cal out of the NCAA tournament last season, improved to 5-0 with a 75-67 win over Minnesota.

Ricky Kreklow came off the bench to score 17 points, including 8 for 10 from the free throw line. Freshman Jabari Bird had 15 points, including 3 of 4 from the 3-point arc, and point guard Justin Cobbs contributed 15 points, seven assists and five rebounds.

Richard Solomon had 11 points, seven rebounds and two blocks.

Montgomery said Kravish did a great job of finding openings in the Arkansas defense.

“Kravish had a great game,” Montgomery said. “Kind of his type of game where based on the way they were playing with quickness and getting out after it left David some lanes to the basket, and as a result, he was able to have a really nice game.”

Kravish said he was motivated to do more after Solomon got into foul trouble.

“When he goes out of the game, I feel like I really have to step it up,” Kravish said. “So when he was in foul trouble, I had to step up my game and keep playing physical, keep playing hard and grabbing every rebound, so that’s what I did.”

Cal overcame 18 turnovers — many of them early — and outrebounded the Razorbacks (3-1) by a 50-31 margin.

Montgomery said the Bears’ ability to shift successfully from man-to-man defense to zone helped keep the Razorbacks off balance.

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Football/basketball: A busy day, not in Maui

Sad to report I am not in Maui with the Cal basketball team.

Glad to report I am at Memorial Stadium, awaiting the start of coach Sonny Dykes season wrapup media session.

As such, I won’t have an in-game thread on Cal-Arkansas.

But I will return this afternoon with highlights of Dykes’ press conference, plus a link to my story.

And I will provide a recap of the hoops, as soon as my football responsibilities are complete for the day.