Basketball: Wiltjer may stay at Ky after all

Kyle Wiltjer may be having second thoughts about leaving Kentucky.

According to an interview in the Portland Tribune, Wiltjer’s father says nothing has been decided.

“Kyle is still a Kentucky Wildcat,” Greg Wiltjer told the news paper. “He loves being a Kentucky Wildcat. He’s not 100 percent committed to transferring.”

Wiltjer said last week in an open letter to Kentucky fans that he was transferring. Greg Wiltjer said his son won’t make a decision until after playing with the Canadian team at the World University Games.

Another possibility is that Wiltjer could stay at Kentucky and redshirt next season.

“The biggest time in Kyle’s career lies in the 14 to 16 months ahead,” Greg Wiltjer said. “I’d 100 percent like him to devote the next year to working on his body, but it’s his decision.”

Wiltjer was recruited heavily by Cal out of high school three years ago, but speculation was that he might transfer to Gonzaga. Now it’s anyone’s guess what might happen.




Golf: Top-seeded Bears climb to 2nd at NCAAs

Top-seeded Cal moved from fifth place to second after Day 2 of stroke play at the NCAA championships at the Capital City Club in suburban Atlanta.

The Bears (277-272-549) sit at 11-under par entering Thursday’s final 18 holes of stroke play. Cal trails Georgia Tech by one stroke.

The top eight teams after Thursday’s round qualify for the quarterfinals of match play, beginning Friday. Cal has an 11-stroke margin over the current ninth-place team, Central Florida.

Three Cal players broke par Wednesday, led by Max Homa (70-65-135), whose five-under 65 tied for the best round by a Cal golfer at an NCAA tournament. Homa and Brandon Hagy (66-69-135) are tied for fourth place.

Joel Stalter (69-68-137) is at three under and tied for 16th place.

Top-ranked Michael Kim (72-70-142) is tied for 58th place and Michael Weaver (74-71-145) is tied for 97th place.

“When I woke up this morning if you would have told me we were going to shoot somewhere around seven, eight or nine-under par I would have said that’s the best thing going,” Cal coach Steve Desimone said. “When we were way up after 13 holes it was party time, but now it’s root canal.

“There’s a lot of golf left with a lot of great teams right behind us. We put ourselves in a real good position but this thing is not a done deal.”



Football: A busy NFL Sunday for Cal alums

Cal football alums everywhere in Sunday’s NFL playoff games:

– Running back Shane Vereen, 23, who had five career touchdowns in two pro seasons, scored three times in the Patriots’ 41-28 win over the Texans. He rushed seven times for 41 yards, including a 1-yard TD, and caught five passes for 83 yards, with TD receptions of 8 and 33 yards.

– Tight end Tony Gonzalez, 36, caught six passes for 51 yards and a touchdown in the Atlanta Falcons’ 30-28 win over the Seattle Seahawks. His 19-yard reception set up the winning field goal. The NFL’s No. 2 all-time receiver, in what may be his final season, Gonzalez won a playoff game for the first time in his career.

– Safety Thomas DeCoud, 27, had three tackles and one pass defended as the Falcons won a playoff game after losing in the first round the past three seasons.

– Running back Marshawn Lynch, 26, scored what appeared to be the winning touchdown for the Seahawks with 31 seconds left, only to watch the Falcons come back to win. The All-Pro from Oakland had a mixed day: 16 carries for 47 yards and a TD, plus three receptions for 37 yards. He also lost a fumble.

– Defensive tackle Brandon Mebane, 27, had five tackles, four of them unassisted, for the Seahawks.

– Kicker Ryan Longwell, 38, just signed by Seattle on Wednesday because of an injury to their starter, made all four of his PATs but did not attempt a field goal.


A break for summer vacation

Hoops are a memory. Spring sports are over. Football season will be here before we know it.

In the meantime, I’m off for a bit of vacation with the family.

I’ll tell you all about it upon my return. Hope all of you find some time to exhale and recharge.

And try to get along with each other while I’m gone.



Basketball: On Zellers, Withey and Franklin

No underdogs survive as the Sweet 16 round of the NCAA tournament wraps up on Friday . . .

   — No. 1′s Kentucky and North Carolina, No. 2 Kansas and No. 3 Baylor all advanced to the regional finals.

   — Quite a night for the Zeller family. UNC’s Tyler Zeller had 20 points and 22 points in a 73-65 win over Ohio, and Indiana’s scored 20 in a 102-90 loss to Kentucky.

   — Think Arizona could have used 7-foot center Jeff Withey this season? The junior transfer became just the fifth player in NCAA tournament history to block 10 shots in a game as Kansas  beat North Carolina State 60-57.

   — Then there’s one-time Cal guard Gary Franklin Jr., now playing for Baylor. The Bears of the Big 12 are one game away from the Final Four, but Franklin has yet to play in any of the team’s three NCAA games and has scored just six points in Baylor’s past 11 games.