Analyst Charles Barkley may not always appreciate the Warriors but he gave some love to Cal on Selection Sunday, calling the Golden Bears the most talented team in the country aside from North Carolina.
“We appreciate Charles for the shoutout,” Cal freshman Jaylen Brown said. “Now we’ve got to make sure we live up to the potential everyone says we have.”
The Bears (23-10) were given a No. 4 seed – their highest since the selection committee began the seeding process in 1979 – and will face Hawaii on Friday in Spokane, Washington. The game will be televised on TBS, with an 11 a.m. PT tipoff.
Cal is playing in its 19th NCAA tournament, its first since 2013.
The Rainbow Warriors (27-5), coached by former Saint Mary’s College assistant Eran Ganot, were regular-season co-champs and tournament winner in the Big West Conference. One of their top players is senior point guard Roderick Bobbitt, an Oakland native and former Castro Valley High star.
The Cal-Hawaii winner will advance to Sunday to face either No. 5 Maryland (25-8) or No. 12 South Dakota State (26-7).