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Went to the game tonight.  It was entertaining.  Sat four rows behind Birgineau, Dirks (yeah, the new guy was in Berkeley tonight), and Sandy.  Got to watch Birgineau lead a Cal spell out cheer.

As for hoops observations, I had several:

1.  Solomon has bulked up a bit, but he has zero offensive game.  No better than he was two years ago as a freshman. Monty was on his ass all night long.

2.  Kravish has added a bit of weight, but where is the aggressiveness?  He needs to look for the ball more on offense, and go strong to the rack, both for shots and rebounds.

3.  Wallace has some serious athletic ability.  Great in the open floor, and goes hard (and quickly) to the basket.  He had 10 points, 10 rebounds and 4 assists tonight in his first start as a Bear.  He just earned himself some more playing time.

4.  Kreklow was the real revelation.  I imagine plenty of people will laugh at me for saying this, but I think he might already be the best guard on the Cal team.  Crabbe sits around on the perimeter FAR too much, and is still FAR too passive.  Kreklow does something that Crabbe has never done; he looks to create oppotunities for his teammates.  He had six assists in limited time tonight, including assists in four consecutive possessions, when Cal moved to a 20 point lead.  What a great passer!  I hope he can put his foot problems behind him.  He could be special.

This post was edited on 12/18 11:17 PM by LafayetteBear

This post was edited on 12/18 11:49 PM by LafayetteBear

12/18 11:15 PM | IP: Logged
I think that's a little harsh regarding Solo. He's improved, and I expect him to further improve. He doesn't have a back to the basket game however.

I'm also liking Ricky. I hope he can stay healthy and that he can jump (and land) on his foot. 

Wallace is a player.

I'm not too worried about the lack of energy for this game. We won the game, and a little let down is hard to avoid. We might have a similar effort in the next game, but we better bring it when we play Harvard. 

Harvard is a solid team. They are young and don't have size, but they play deep. It's a game that we should win comfortably, but also a game that we could lose if we were sleep walking. (next year they've got a top class coming in with lots of bigs)
12/18 11:52 PM | IP: Logged
Monty did not look all that happy in the post game interview. I think he knows this team is not ready to compete against the better teams in the conference. The comments above pointed out the positives. If Wallace can hit from outside he can be our most effective player. His floor game is the best on the team. We still seem to be searching for the right combination. We can get away with substituting like tonight against an obviously inferior team. We cannot do that in the conference.

Crabbe is becoming an enigma. If he is not hitting his outside shot you see by the facial expressions that he is not a happy player. I don't know how he can adapt to being just "one of the guys making 10-15 points per game". He wants to be the dominant scorer and good teams are not going to let him do that consistently. He certainly is not ready for the NBA. Next year he may be in the awkward position of playing behind Jabari Bird, I hope I am wrong and he comes out of this funk.

I am usually very upbeat about this team but I am afraid we are going to be a middle of the conference team at best based on recent performance. Hope I am wrong.
12/19 3:52 AM | IP: Logged

Originally posted by johnsonbob:
Monty did not look all that happy in the post game interview. I think he knows this team is not ready to compete against the better teams in the conference.
Well, the three previous games established that.
12/19 9:29 AM | IP: Logged

Rickey Kreklow could be the best all around player we have.  He should have had more assist last night but for dropped passes and missed shots.  His defense is awesome.  However, my guest last night, an orthopedic surgeon, said his right foot simply is not right and was wondering why he was playing when we had a double digit lead.  Just think of how good Rickey would be if he was 100% healthy.

Alan Crabbe looks like he has dialed himself out of the game, standing in the corner on offense and looking like a lost soul when he missed some easy shots. Alan did dive for a loose ball towards the end of the game which made me feel better about him.

I sit 2 rows behind press row (Ryan Gorcey was missing last night) and had 2 NBA scouts sitting near me for the Creighton game.  What little I heard about Crabbe and Cobbs was not very favorable.  However, Creighton's star definitely was getting their attention.

Our bigs really are medicore and will cost us several games during PAC 12 play.  I was expecting better from Solo, but he just plays in spurts and has no game in the paint offensively.  Thurman has to learn to jump instead of playing flat footed.  Kravish has regressed and is a liability.  But what options does Monty have? Bak?

12/19 4:38 PM | IP: Logged
As I said before I think we will see more 4 perimeter players and 1 big to get the best players on the floor.  Even though he does not get many style points the main big may be Thurman.  If Crabbe does not get it together that is a real negative..  I am not worried about Cobbs. He has the mental toughness and attitude that Crabbe is lacking.  Wallace has a lot of upside and he is the wild card.  He probably makes the All Freshman team.  
12/19 8:30 PM | IP: Logged
It would be nice to rest Krecklow.  But he has missed so much time he needs to play minutes.  Cal simply has to find the right combination on the floor and play them long enough to establish some rythym and consistency.  If Monty makes a contender of this team  it will be a signature coaching achievement. 
12/19 8:41 PM | IP: Logged
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