Basketball: Dec. 22 game at Virginia on ESPN2

Cal’s Dec. 22 nonconference basketball game at Virginia — perhaps the Bears’ best early test — will tip off at 6 p.m. PT and be aired on ESPN2.

The two schools also announced Monday they will play a return game in Berkeley in 2016-17. No date for the game has been established.

The Cavaliers began last season 19-0 and won the Atlantic Coast Conference regular-season title before losing in the third round of the NCAA tournament to finish 30-4. They finished last season ranked No. 6 in the AP Top-25

Virginia features senior guard Malcolm Brogdon, who last year averaged a team-best 14.0 points. Brogdon was projected as a likely second-round NBA draft pick, but opted to remain in school to pursue his Masters degree in public policy.

Cal, with three double-digit scorers returning and top-10 national recruits in Jaylen Brown and Ivan Rabb, figures to begin the season somewhere in the national rankings.


Football: Bears nab Houston LB prospect

Cal got its 19th oral commitment for the class of 2016 this weekend when Cameron Goode, a linebacker from Klein Collins High in suburban Houston chose the Bears.

A 6-foot-3, 205-pounder, Goode picked Cal over offers from Boston College, Iowa State, Kansas, Fresno State and Louisiana Lafayette, according to Scout.

Rivals ranks Goode as a two-star prospect, Scout does not award him any stars.


Basketball: Jaylen Brown says Bears ‘can win it all’

Jaylen Brown realizes not everyone understood his decision to play basketball at Cal, but he is happy after six weeks of summer school and has big plans for this season.

“I have very high expectations. I think we can win it all,” Brown said Thursday in his first interaction with Bay Area media. “We have a lot of work to do, but we have very good pieces.”

A 6-foot-7 small forward and consensus top-five national recruit from Marietta, Georgia, Brown could have attended any school in the country. By picking Cal, he raised eyebrows in the college basketball community and even among some of those close to him.

“Some were very supportive and happy, and others were very . . . I wouldn’t say non-supportive, but they weren’t the happiest with my decision,” Brown explained.

“It wasn’t as typical as how a highly recruited athlete usually goes to a much bigger basketball university. I had to make the decision for me and I felt like this was clearly my best choice.”

Brown, attending Cal’s summer bridge program for incoming freshmen and preparing for the Bears’ Aug. 13-24 exhibition trip to Australia, said he “fell in love with the campus” when he made an unofficial visit to Berkeley before making his decision after the season last spring.

Academics, weather and location all played a role in his decision to pick Cal, Brown said.

His relationship with Cal coach Cuonzo Martin began when he was a freshman and Martin was coaching at Tennessee, and fellow prep star Ivan Rabb’s decision to attend Cal also influenced his thinking.

Former Cal and NBA star Shareef Abdur-Rahim, who attended Wheeler High in Marietta two decades before Brown arrived on the same campus, shared his experience at Berkeley with Brown.

“He said to dive into being here, focus on the now. He said it will be some of the best times you’ll ever have,” Brown said. “He was a mentor of mine, but my decision was my own.”

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Basketball: Roman Davis signs with Bears

Small forward Roman Davis, who gave Cal an oral commitment late last week, has signed with the Bears and will enroll in summer bridge classes, coach Cuonzo Martin announced.

“I want to welcome Roman to the family,” Martin said. “His athleticism and toughness will allow him to do a lot of things in our program. Defensively, I think he has the capability to guard all five positions. He comes from one of the finest academic high schools in California. We are excited he chose to be a Golden Bear.”

The 6-foot-7, 200-pound Davis played at the Windward School in Los Angeles, where he averaged 9.7 points, 9.2 rebounds, and 1.6 blocks per game as a senior this past year for the Wildcats. Davis helped Windward to a 22-11 overall record.

Davis record the game-winning bucket in the final seconds in back-to-back games for the Wildcats this past January. He posted seven blocks in a game during Windward’s Division 5AA playoff run in February.

Davis was selected to the 2015 Division 5AA All-California Interscholastic Federation Boys Basketball Team, as voted by the Southern California Interscholastic Basketball Coaches Association.



Football: Bears add three recruits

So I take a little vacation, and Cal responds with a busy recruiting week.

The Bears got their third oral commitment of the week on Friday when Chris Yaghi, a defensive tackle from Foothill-Santa Ana, made his announcement on Twitter.

Rivals reports that Yaghi picked Cal over the likes of Oregon, Boise State and Utah, among others, in part because of the school’s strong engineer program. The 6-foot-3 1/2, 265-pounder is rated as a three-star prospect by Rivals and Scout.

Earlier, Cal got commitments from cornerback Camryn Bynum of Centennial-Corona and offensive lineman Francisco Perez of Baldwin Park.

Bynum, at 5-11, 160, is rated three stars by Rivals and Scout. His other offers included Boston College, San Diego State, Boise State and Washington State.

Perez, a 6-5, 301-pounder, is projected as a guard Rivals, which gives him three stars. Scout also rates Perez as a three-star prospect. Perez had offers from four other Pac-12 schools, including Arizona State and Oregon State.

Cal’s 2016 recruiting class now numbers 16 prospects. Scout and Rivals both rank the Bears’ class at No. 28 nationally, fifth-best in the Pac-12. Cal is




Football: Bears nab another wideout

The Bears got a commitment from their third wide receiver in a week on Friday, landing three-star Matt Laris of East Catholic High in Sammamish, Washington.

Laris, a 6-foot-4, 210-pounder, also had offers from Air Force, Boise State and Wyoming, among others, according to Rivals.com, and had drawn interest from Stanford and Washington.

Scout, which also rates Laris as a three-star prospect, reports that he caught 72 passes for 1,394 yards and 16 touchdowns as a junior last fall.

Cal now has 11 prospects from the Class of 2016 orally committed.


Football: Bears nab wideout from Hawaii

Cal added its third football commitment of the week, landing 6-foot-2 wide receiver Drew Kobayashi of Honolulu powerhouse St. Louis High, according to multiple recruiting websites.

Kobayashi, who also had offers from San Diego State, Washington and Washington State, is rated as a three-star prospect in the class of 2016 by Rivals and Scout.

He is the 10th player to commit to Cal, the third this week, joining cornerback Josh Drayden of Dallas and wide receiver Logan Gamble of Long Beach.


Football: Bears land WR, CB — both 3 stars

Greetings from Cleveland . . .

Cal has picked up a pair of 3-star prospects, according to both Rivals and Scout:

Josh Drayden, a 5-foot-10, 175-pound cornerback from Bishop Dunne High in Dallas comes on board after the Bears lost a pair of 4-star safeties in the past couple weeks. Drayden, who reportedly runs a 4.4-second 40-yard dash, also had offers from Boise State, Illinois, Iowa and Wisconsin, among others.

Logan Gamble, a 6-5, 200-pound wide receiver/athlete from St. Anthony High in Long Beach. Gamble also had offers from Arizona, San Diego State, Virginia and Washington State.