Women’s basketball: Cal’s Kristine Anigwe earns national freshman of week honors

Cal forward Kristine Anigwe earned National Freshman of the Week honors from the US Basketball Writers Association after scoring 29 points in the Bears’ overtime win over Nebraska.

Anigwe, a 6-foot-4 native of Phoenix, has won Pac-12 Freshman of the Week honors three straight times.

She is the nation’s No. 2 freshman scorer at 21.0 points per game, and is averaging 33.0 points and 11.3 rebounds over her past three games.


Football, Jared Goff, Hardy Nickerson win Cal’s MVP awards

Quarterback Jared Goff and linebacker Hardy Nickerson won offensive and defensive MVP honors for Cal at the Bears’ team banquet Sunday evening at Haas Pavilion.

Goff broke his own single-season school records for passing yards and touchdowns and was the first Cal quarterback named first-team all-Pac-12 since Aaron Rodgers in 2004.

Nickerson led the Bears in tackles with 101 tackles — the first Cal player with at least 100 in a season since Mychal Kendricks in 2011.

Cal’s other team award winners:

• Stephen Anderson: Ken Cotton Award (Most Courageous Player)
• Chris Borrayo: Andy Smith Award (Player With Most Big C Playing Time)
• Aaron Cochran: Bob Tessier Award (Most Improved Lineman)
• Jeffrey Coprich: Ted Agu Award (Player Demonstrating A Commitment To Community Service)
• Jared Goff: Bear Backers MVP – Offense, Cort Majors Team Captain
• Fabiano Hale: Dink Artal Award (Scout Team Player Of The Year – Offense)
• Kyle Kragen: Stub Allison Award (Player Demonstrating Commitment In Strength And Conditioning)
• Puka Lopa: Ken Harvey Award (Player Demonstrating Academic Commitment And Improvement)
• Daniel Lasco: Cort Majors Team Captain
• Stefan McClure: Cort Majors Team Captain, Joe Roth Award (Player Who Best Exemplifies Courage, Sportsmanship and Attitude)
• Hardy Nickerson: Bear Backers MVP – Defense, Cort Majors Team Captain
• Griffin Piatt: Frank Schlessinger Coaches Award (Player Who Demonstrates Outstanding Athletic Ability And Academic Success)
• Jordan Rigsbee: Brick Muller Award (Most Valuable Lineman, Cort Majors Team Captain
• Cameron Saffle: Clint Evans Award (Most Intense Freshman Competitor)
• Bryce Treggs: Berkeley Breakfast Club Award (Outstanding Player in the Big Game)
• Trey Turner: Bob Simmons Award (Most Valuable Freshman)
• Russell Ude: Dink Artal Award (Scout Team Player Of The Year – Defense)
• Patrick Worstell: J Scott Duncan Award (Most Valuable Special Teams Player)


Football: Daniel Lasco lands Shrine Game spot

Cal senior running back Daniel Lasco has accepted an invitation to play in the East-West Shrine Game on Jan. 23 at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Florida.

Lasco has rushed for 1,872 yards and 18 touchdowns in 40 games at Cal. His 18 rushing touchdowns rank 10th on the school’s all-time list.

Hip and ankle injuries have caused Lasco to miss three games this season and limited his effectiveness in several others. He has rushed for just 331 yards and five touchdowns this fall.


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)


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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Athletics: Cal sweeps Pac-12 awards for football, basketball

A busy Monday on the awards front for Cal.

The Bears swept Pac-12 weekly awards in football and men’s and women’s basketball.

— Football: Jared Goff was named Pac-12 Offensive Player of the Week after passing for a season-high 453 yards and six touchdowns in the Bears’ 54-24 victory over Oregon State that gave the Bears a sixth victory and made them bowl eligible for the first time in four seasons. Goff was 26 of 37, and hit 22 of 25 attempts during one stretch.

— Men’s basketball: Tyrone Wallace was given the season’s first Pac-12 Player of the Week award following a 20-point, six-rebound, nine-assist stat line in Cal’s 97-65 season-opening win over Rice. Wallace, a senior point guard and all-Pac-12 selection, shot 9 for 12 from the field and his assist total was a career high. This was the fourth time over three seasons that Wallace has won the award.

— Women’s basketball: Courtney Range won the Pac-12 Player of the Week award after contributing 23 points to a win over Austin Peay, then 19 points and 13 rebounds to the Bears’ road win over then-No. 8 Louisville. Meanwhile, Kristine Anigwe won Pac-12 Freshman of the Week by averaging 15.0 points in the two victories.


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.


Football: Sonny Dykes on Dodd Trophy watch list

Cal’s Sonny Dykes is among 20 coaches on the midseason watch list for the Dodd Trophy, given to the Football Bowl Subdivision coach whose program represents “the highest ideals of leadership, scholarship and integrity on and off the field.”

The No. 23 Bears are 5-1 after their 30-24 road loss to No. 4 Utah.

Other Pac-12 coaches on the midseason list include Stanford’s David Shaw, Utah’s Kyle Whittingham and UCLA’s Jim Mora.

Among others on the watch list are Ohio State’s Urban Meyer, Baylor’s Art Briles, Alabama’s Nick Saban and LSU’s Les Miles.

Not on the list: Michigan’s Jim Harbaugh, whose team has shut out its past three opponents.


Basketball: Four Bears on preseason watch lists

Four Cal basketball players are on the preseason watch lists for the national Hoop Hall Awards sponsored by the Basketball Hall of Fame:

— Senior Tyrone Wallace is a preseason candidate for the Bob Cousy Point Guard of the Year Award, won last year by Utah’s Delon Wright. Other 2016 Pac-12 candidates: Gary Payton Jr., of Oregon State.

— Junior Jordan Mathews is a candidate for the Jerry West Shooting Guard of the Year Award, won last year by Ohio State’s DeAngelo Russell. Other 2016 Pac-12 candidates: Allonzo Trier of Arizona.

— Freshman Jaylen Brown is a candidate for the Julius Erving Small Forward of the Year Award, won last year by Arizona’s Stanley Johnson. Other 2016 Pac-12 candidates: Brandon Taylor of Utah.

— Freshman Ivan Rabb is a candidate for the Karl Malone Power Forward of the Year Award, won last year by Louisville’s Montrezl Harrell. Other 2016 Pac-12 candidates: Tony Parker, UCLA and Jordan Loveridge of Utah.

Wisconsin’s Frank Kaminsky won the Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Center of the Year Award last season.


Football: Cal defensive player honored by Pac-12 for second week in a row — the world is upside down!

Senior safety Stefan McClure was named Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Week — the second straight week a Cal defensive player has been honored by the league.

You might remember 2014 when the Bears’ defense was the most futile in Western Civilization, much less the Pac-12.

Not anymore.

A week after defensive end Kyle Kragen was honored, McClure got the award for delivering a timely sack and returning a fumble for a touchdown after a Washington State fake punt try.

The Bears have now scored three touchdowns with their defense this season — and I count this as defense (rather than special teams) because the fake punt made it an offensive play not a kicking-game play.