Women’s basketball: Chris Dawson named to NCAA chair

Chris Dawson, former long-time athletic administrator at Cal, has been named to serve as chair for the 2015-16 NCAA Division I Women’s Basketball Committee, charged with selecting and seeding the NCAA tournament field.

Currently an associate commissioner of the Pac-12 Conference, also is serving her fourth year as a member of the NCAA committee. Dawson will succeed current chair Dru Hancock, senior associate commissioner for the Big 12 Conference. She will officially become the 17th chair of the committee on September 1, 2015.

“It’s an honor to be selected by my fellow committee members to serve in this role,” Dawson said. “I look forward to our continued work together to enhance the game and create memorable NCAA tournaments for student-athletes and fans alike.”

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Basketball: Bears in NYC with notion to win

The Cal basketball didn’t trek to New York City this week for the weather. The Bears want to test themselves against high-level competition, and they want to win.

Cal (2-0) takes on No. 23 Syracuse (2-0) on Thursday night for the third year in a row, in the semifinals of the 2K Classic at Madison Square Garden.

“Having a good tournament in New York would be huge for us, kind of show us where we are,” Cal senior forward David Kravish said.

The Bears lost to Syracuse in the 2013 NCAA tournament at San Jose, then again last season at the Maui Invitational.

“I remember thinking we should have beat them both times,” Kravish said of the defeats by margins of six and 11 points. “You don’t go into the season hoping to do anything. You go in expecting to win. We’re not putting all this work in to finish last or to lose games.”

A win over the Orange would advance first-year Cal coach Cuonzo Martin’s team to the Friday championship game against either No. 10 Texas (2-0) or Iowa (2-0).

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Football: Quarterback Jared Goff still getting used to being more than a face in the crowd on Cal’s campus

The face of Cal football still is getting comfortable with the idea that others around campus are beginning to recognize him.

Quarterback Jared Goff is no longer the anonymous kid from Marin County.

“I notice people kind of looking, whispering,” said Will Perry, one of nine guys with whom Goff shares a three-story house near the Cal campus. “They know who he is.”

Goff’s parents, Jerry and Nancy, have had the same experience while spending time on campus with their son. “It’s not like the 1964 Beatles are walking down Bancroft, but he’s a shy kid,” Jerry Goff said.

Goff squirms a bit when asked what it’s like when he’s approached by fans.

“It’s just kind of an awkward thing,” he replied.
For coach Sonny Dykes, who installed Goff as a freshman starting quarterback before the 2013 season, Goff is an ideal cornerstone for a developing program. The appeal is not limited to the sophomore already having thrown 30 touchdown passes this season and being on a pace to eventually break every Cal passing record.

“He’s kind of the golden boy Cal guy,” Dykes said. “Both his parents went to Cal. He grew up a Cal fan. He’s a tall, good-looking guy. If there’s kind of what you want a quarterback to look like, it would be him with about 25 more pounds.”

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Passing yards — game: 1st (527)

Passing yards — season: 1st (3,508)

300-yard passing games — career: 1st (11)

250-yard passing games — career: 1st (16)

Passing touchdowns — season: 2nd (30)

Passing efficiency — season: 3rd (152.37)

Passing efficiency — career: 4th (136.05)

Passing yards — career: 5th (6,906)

Passing touchdowns — career: tied 6th (48)


Football notebook: Second-gen Bears eager for Big Game win

Yes, Cal needs one more win to become bowl eligible, but for 10 players on the Bears’ roster Saturday’s 117th Big Game is more personal than that.

Wide receiver Bryce Treggs and linebacker Hardy Nickerson Jr., are among the list of Cal players whose fathers or grand-fathers were athletes at the school.

Treggs, 0-2 so far in his career against the Cardinal, is eager to get bragging rights over his father, Brian, a star receiver more than two decades ago.

“My dad never beat Stanford, even when they were ranked No. 6 in the country,” Bryce Treggs said.

A star on the 1991 Cal team that finished the season 10-2, Brian Treggs famously vowed he would move to Palo Alto if the Bears didn’t win the Big Game his senior season. They lost 38-21, and Brian Treggs finished his career 0-3-1 against Cal’s rival.

“So it’s a friendly competition between me and him to accomplish things that he hasn’t accomplished,” Bryce Treggs said. “If we get this win it’ll be a big accomplishment for me.”

Nickerson’s father, Hardy Nickerson, went on to play 16 seasons in the NFL. But his only victory in the Big Game came in 1986, when the 1-9 Bears rose up to knock off a heavily favored Stanford team 17-11 in coach Joe Kapp’s final game at Cal.

“I’ve seen pictures and footage of that. All the crowd is on the field,” Nickerson Jr. said. “He’s told me nothing but great stories about that game.”

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Football: Beating Stanford `the next step’ for Bears

Sonny Dykes is no different than most coaches. They all insist on playing ‘em one at a time.

Well the next one for Cal is big: The Big Game.

And there is more at stake than usual – one more win and the Bears will play in a bowl game.

Asked to explain what a win over Stanford on Saturday would mean to his program, Dykes said it’s about the rivalry, but more than that.

“It’s just the next step. The next logical step is to beat a rival, to beat a team that’s been good here recently, a team we haven’t beaten in a while,” Dykes said. “The biggest thing is what it does for your program, makes you bowl eligible and gives you a chance to extend your season, which is big for us.

“It’s always big because of the rivalry. The bowl makes it bigger than usual.”

Cal suffered an historic 63-13 loss at Stanford a year ago – its biggest margin of defeat in the first 116 meetings of the two schools.

Dykes acknowledges that winning the line of scrimmage will be a big challenge, but a pivotal one in the game.

“That’s the strength of their football team,” he said of the Cardinal’s offensive and defensive lines. “They lost a lot of players (from last season) who were seniors, but they’ve got a lot of good experienced players back.

“They’re still a good football team, that’s who they are and what they’re good at. It will be very important for us to match their physical play and certainly hold up better than we did last year.

“I think it’s a better matchup for us. We’ll certainly be tested on Saturday. We’ll find out.”


Swimming: 3 Cal coaches named to national team staffs

Cal men’s swim coach David Durden will serve as head coach of the USA men’s swim team at the 2015 World Championships in Kazan, Russia, USA Swimming announced.

Cal women’s coach Teri McKeever, a former Olympic team head coach, will be an assistant on the women’s staff for the same meet.

Yuri Suguiyama, an assistant on the Cal men’s team, has been named a men’s assistant at the 2015 World University Games in South Korea.


Football: BYU game to begin at either 1:30 or 3 p.m.

Cal’s regular-season finale against BYU on Nov. 29 at Memorial Stadium will kick off at either 1:30 or 3 p.m., and will be televised by the Pac-12 Networks, the conference office announced.

The final start time will be announced either Saturday or Sunday, after the Big Game at Cal on Saturday afternoon.

Cal and BYU have met three times previously, with the Cougars winning twice. But the Bears prevailed in the most recent matchup, posting a 35-28 victory in the 2005 Las Vegas Bowl.


Football alums: Aaron Rodgers has another huge day

Former Cal star Aaron Rodgers continued his red-hot play Sunday, throwing for 341 yards and three touchdowns in the Packers’ 53-20 rout of the Philadelphia Eagles.

Including last week’s 55-14 win over Chicago, Rodgers has gone 40 for 63 for 656 yards with nine touchdowns and zero interceptions in two weeks.

He has thrown 29 touchdown passes since his most recent interception in a home game, dating back to the 2012 season.

Elsewhere . . .

– Marshawn Lynch rushed 24 times for 124 yards in Seattle’s 24-20 loss at Kansas City.

– C.J. Anderson had eight catches for 86 yards and nine rushes for 29 yards in Denver’s loss to the Rams. Over the past two weeks, Anderson has totaled 278 yards rushing and receiving.

– Keenan Allen caught eight passes for 63 yards in San Diego’s win over Oakland.


Football: Big Game activity schedule

Cal’s Big Game activity schedule:

11 am – Cable Car Rally Begins (Ghirardelli Square, San Francisco)
Noon – Cable Car Rally Ends (Union Square, San Francisco)
7 p.m. – Inside The Locker Room Radio Show (Doubletree by Hilton Hotel, 200 Marina Boulevard, Berkeley)

11:30 am – The Big Sail (St. Francis Yacht Club, 99 Yacht Road, San Francisco)
Noon – Tree Chopping Rally (Sproul Hall, Berkeley)

#11 a.m. – Guardsmen Big Game Luncheon (Fairmont Hotel, San Francisco)
7:30 p.m. – The Big Sing (Wheeler Auditorium, Berkeley)

All Day – Big Give (online at BigGive.berkeley.edu)
8 p.m. – Night Rally (Starts at Bowles Hall, runs thru campus and City of Berkeley ending at Sproul Plaza)

6 p.m. (Doors)/Approximately 7 p.m. (Rally) – Bonfire Rally (The Greek Theatre, Berkeley)

#1 p.m. – The 117th Big Game, Stanford at Memorial Stadium