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Cal basketball: Brian Hendrick into Pac-12 Hall of Honor

Brian Hendrick, who sits ninth on Cal’s career scoring list and fourth among the school’s all-time rebounders and twice helped the Bears to the NCAA tournament, has been named as the school’s representative to the 2016 Pac-12 Hall of Honor class.

Hendrick and honorees from the other 11 schools will be recognized in a ceremony prior to the Pac-12 tournament championship game on March 12 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.

A 6-foot-8 power forward, Hendrick scored 1,556 points and grabbed 898 rebounds from 1990 through 1993. He was the Bears’ leading scorer as a sophomore (17.6) and junior (16.1) and earned a spot on the all-conference first team both seasons.

After collecting Pac-10 Freshman of the Year honors in 1990 when he averaged 14.9 points per game, Hendrick had 13 points and 10 rebounds in Cal’s 65-63 win over Indiana in the opening round of the NCAA tournament — the Bears’ first NCAA appearance in 30 years.

Three years later, playing alongside Jason Kidd and Lamond Murray, he averaged 10.4 points and 7.4 rebounds during the regular season, then contributed eight points and 12 rebounds to the Bears’ 82-77 win over two-time defending national champion Duke in the second round of the NCAA tournament.

Hendrick averaged 11.2 points in five NCAA tournament games for the Bears.

The Pac-12 Hall of Honor was introduced in 2002, with legendary coach Pete Newell selected as the Bears’ inaugural representative. Since then, Cal’s yearly honorees are: Kevin Johnson, Darrall Imhoff, Kidd, Andy Wolfe, Russ Critchfield, Charles Johnson, Nibs Price, Earl Robinson, Bob McKeen, Murray, Shareef Abdur-Rahim, Dave Butler and Sean Lampley.

Others chosen to the 2016 Pac-12 Hall of Honor class include Stanford’s Kim Belton, Arizona’s Salim Stoudamire, Oregon’s Luke Ridnour and Washington’s Isaiah Thomas.

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Basketball: Cal braces for big man Josh Scott and potent Colorado squad in Pac-12 opener

Big man Josh Scott will only be a piece of the challenge for Cal (10-3) on Friday night when Colorado (11-2) visits Haas Pavilion in the Pac-12 opener for both teams.

Tipoff is 8 p.m. (Pac-12) Networks.

Scott, a 6-foot-10 senior, is second in the conference with an 18.4 scoring average. He’s shooting 62.3 percent from the field and grabbing 9.4 rebounds per game. He’s blocked 24 shots.

“Yeah, but that’s expected,” Cal coach Cuonzo Martin said of Scott’s performance, “I just think the other guys, the way they’re shooting the ball, the things they’re doing, makes them a tougher team to defend. We expect Josh to be Josh.”

The “other guys” include three players ranked among the top eight in the Pac-12 in 3-point accuracy: sophomores Dominique Collier (.487) and George King (.460) and junior Josh Fortune (.429), a transfer from Providence.

“Good team, they’re playing well,” Martin said. “If you double the post, they find the shooters.”

That means 7-foot center Kameron Rooks likely will get the man-to-man assignment on Scott while 6-11 freshman Ivan Rabb matches against 6-9 junior forward Wesley Gordon.

Martin said he’s pleased with the improvements Rooks has made, especially on defense.

“He wants that challenge — he wants to guard whoever’s the best guy,” Martin said.

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Basketball: Cal’s hopes of winning Pac-12 title rely on much more than merely talent

The hype and hope that earned Cal a preseason No. 14 ranking by the Associated Press had everything to do with talent. The Bears returned with all-Pac-12 point guard Tyrone Wallace and welcomed five-star national recruits Ivan Rabb and Jaylen Brown.

But if the Bears want to fulfill their potential as the Pac-12 schedule begins Friday, coach Cuonzo Martin said, “It’s not about talent.”

It’s about effort and toughness and defense, and Martin saw none of that over Thanksgiving weekend, when the Bears lost twice in Las Vegas. They allowed 44 second-half points to San Diego State, then 94 the next day to Richmond.

Cal has regrouped since that lost weekend, winning six of seven. The only blemish: A 63-62 overtime loss at No. 5 Virginia. Most importantly, the Bears embraced defense.

In seven December games, they’ve held opponents to 35.7-percent shooting and 59.9 points per game – an average of nearly 16 points per team below their normal output.

Bob McKillop, who has coached at Davidson for 27 seasons, called the Bears’ defense “extraordinary,” after Cal’s 86-60 win on Monday night.

There are at least a half-dozen contenders for the top spot in the Pac-12. If the Bears aspire to get there, it won’t just be about talent.

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Football: Bears’ 2016 Pac-12 schedule begins at ASU

Cal will open its 2016 Pac-12 Conference football schedule next Sept. 24 at Arizona State — the same team the Bears beat 48-46 in their regular-season finale at Berkeley last month.

The Pac-12 announced its schedule of conference games Tuesday and the 119th Big Game against Stanford will be played at Memorial Stadium on Nov. 19.

Cal will play a Friday night game on Oct. 21 at home against Oregon, then will play at USC the following Thursday, Oct. 27.

2016 Cal Football Schedule

Sat., Aug. 27 – Hawai’i-x
Sat., Sept. 10 – at San Diego State
Sat., Sept. 17 – Texas
Sat., Sept. 24 – at Arizona State-y
Sat., Oct. 1 – Utah-y
Sat., Oct. 8 – at Oregon State-y
Fri., Oct. 21 – Oregon-y
Thu., Oct. 27 – at USC-y
Sat., Nov. 5 – Washington-y
Sat., Nov. 12 – at Washington State-y
Sat., Nov. 19 – Stanford-y
Sat., Nov. 26 – UCLA-y
Fri., Dec. 2 – Pac-12 Championship Game-z

x — at Sydney, Australia; y — Pac-12 game; z — at Levi’s Stadium, Santa Clara

Times and TV information TBA.

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Football: Three Cal players on Pac-12 Team of Century

Three former Cal players — tight end Tony Gonzalez, defensive tackle Ed White and defensive end Andre Carter — have been chosen to the Pac-12’s All-Century football team.

The 50-player team was selected by a panel of 119 former players and coaches and media members, including me.

Stanford quarterback John Elway was voted Offensive Player of the Century, USC’s Ronnie Lott is the Defensive Player of the Century and USC’s John McKay was chosen Coach of the Century. Click here to view the full team.

— Gonzalez, a two-sport athlete at Cal, went on to become the most prolific tight end in NFL history. He was a six-time first-team all-pro selection and was named to the Pro Bowl 14 times in 17 seasons with Kansas City Chiefs and Atlanta Falcons. He totaled 1,325 receptions for 15,127 yards and 111 touchdowns — all NFL records for a tight end.

— White was a consensus first-team All-America nose guard for Cal in 1968, who moved to offensive line in the pros and played 17 seasons with Minnesota Vikings and San Diego Chargers. He played in four Super Bowls and was a three-time first-team All-Pro selection.

— Carter was a consensus All-America pick as a senior at Cal in 2000, compiling 31 career sacks to set a school record that still stands. He then enjoyed a 13-year NFL career in which he totaled 80.5 sacks in 184 career games for four teams, including the 49ers and Raiders. He was a Pro Bowl selection in 2011 with the New England Patriots.

Other Cal players nominated for the Team of the Century:

Bryan Anger, P (2008-11)
Jim Breech, PK (1974-77)
Rob Franz, OL (1946-49)
Nick Harris, P (1997-2000)
DeSean Jackson, WR/RET (2005-07)
Ryan Longwell, P (1993-96)
Alex Mack, C (2005-08)
Chuck Muncie, RB (1973-75)
Deltha O’Neal, CB/RET (1996-99)
Les Richter, OL (1949-51)

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Football: Jared Goff, Kenny Lawler named All-Pac-12

Cal quarterback Jared Goff and wide receiver Kenny Lawler were named to the All-Pac-12 first-team on Tuesday in a vote of the league’s coaches.

Goff shared the first-team spot with Washington State’s Luke Falk.

“The first-team All-Pac-12 recognition for Jared and Kenny is well-deserved,” Cal coach Sonny Dykes said in the school’s news release. “Along with the rest of our team they have worked so hard to get better every day and reach the place we are now. There’s much more to do, but I’m so proud of everyone on this football team for what they have accomplished so far this season.”

Click here for the entire all-Pac-12 team. The Pac-12 Player of the Year and Coach of the Year were scheduled to be announced on the Pac-12 Networks at 6 p.m. Tuesday.

Goff has broken 26 Cal records, most recently eclipsing his own season marks for passing yards (4,252) and touchdown passes (37). He is fourth nationally in passing yards, third in TD passes.

He is the first Cal quarterback voted to the all-conference first team since Aaron Rodgers in 2004.

“I’m very honored to have been named first-team All-Pac-12 along with Luke (Falk),” Goff said. “There are a lot of good quarterbacks in this conference and there were several that could have been selected.

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Basketball: Get your fill of Pac-12 hoops on Friday

Ready for some Pac-12 basketball?

Ten teams from the Pac-12 Conference will debut Friday — with nine of them playing on the various Pac-12 Networks. Here’s the schedule:

#FullCourtFriday
No. 7 Iowa State vs. COLORADO (1) 3 p.m. MT ESPN2
Sacramento State at ARIZONA STATE 5:30 p.m. MT PAC12
San Diego at USC 5 p.m. PT PAC12
Northern Arizona at WASHINGTON STATE 5:30 p.m. PT PAC12
Wisconsin Green Bay at STANFORD 6 p.m. PT PAC12
Pacific at No. 12 ARIZONA 7:30 p.m. MT PAC12
Jackson State at OREGON 7 p.m. PT PAC12
Southern Utah at No. 16 UTAH 8:30 p.m. MT PAC12
Monmouth at UCLA 8 p.m. PT PAC12
Rice at No. 14 CALIFORNIA 8:30 p.m. PT PAC12

By the way, handling game analysis for the Cal-Rice match will be Ben Braun — who coached at both schools.

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Volleyball: Cal’s Carli Lloyd on all-century team

Former Cal star Carli Lloyd was named to the Pac-12 Women’s Volleyball All-Century Team.

Lloyd, a setter from 2007-10, was the only Cal player chosen to the 16-member team. She was the American Volleyball Coaches Association Player of the Year as a senior, when she also was named to the All-Final Four team.

Former Stanford great and four-time U.S. Olympian Logan Tom was voted Player of the Century.

Andy Banachowski, who coached at UCLA in 1965 and ’66 and from 1970 through 2009, was voted Pac-12 Coach of the Century.

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Basketball: New ASU coach Bobby Hurley’s final college game was his introduction to Jason Kidd

First-year Arizona State coach Bobby Hurley played the final game of his spectacular Duke career against Cal.

And lost.

The Blue Devils were two-time defending NCAA champions in 1993 when they ran into Jason Kidd and the Bears in a second-round game at Chicago. Hurley scored a career-high 32 points, but Kidd had 11 points, 14 assists, eight rebounds and four steals to orchestrate an 82-77 upset.

Hurley said the Blue Devils had watched video of Kidd, but admitted it didn’t completely prepare them.

“You start to know about a guy’s reputation, but you don’t really learn until you actually encounter him on the floor,” Hurley said. “I just knew right away he possessed a lot of qualities I valued.

“I could tell he was all about winning. And how hard he was playing. His IQ for the game, I thought was special. He just really pushed the ball – he had a great motor.

“He had the size and the speed and his vision was ridiculous. He thought a few seconds ahead of the next play that was developing.”

All of that packaged in a college freshman.

“His maturity and his desire to win . . . for a freshman not to be afraid of that moment, it was like another game for him.”

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Basketball: Key for Cal is putting the pieces together

For the Cal basketball team, picked to finish second in the Pac-12 Conference in the annual media poll, talent is not the issue.

“They’re talented,” said Mike Montgomery, the former Cal and Stanford coach. “How they’re going to fit together is the question.”

The Bears return starting guards Tyrone Wallace, Jordan Mathews and Jabari Bird from a year ago and have added freshmen forwards Jaylen Brown and Ivan Rabb, a pair of five-star recruits.

“Cal is going to be a terrific team,” said Arizona coach Sean Miller, whose Wildcats were tabbed to win the Pac-12 on Thursday at the league’s annual media day gathering. “What they have going for them is that blend of talent – both old and new – and that can be a powerful thing.”

Second-year coach Cuonzo Martin understands developing chemistry on his roster will dictate the Bears’ success. Martin had a good read on Brown and Rabb before signing them, and says the team’s summer tour of Australia helped bring players together.

But he understands his role in the equation.

“It’s your job as a coach to make them understand what it means to be part of a team, to be successful,” Martin said.

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