Men's Basketball Prepares For Washington Schools
Courtesy: Cal Athletics  
Release:  01/24/2000

Jan. 24, 2000

Game No. 18
Washington State Cougars (5-10, 0-6)
at California Golden Bears (10-7, 1-4)
Thursday, Jan. 27, 7:30 p.m.
Haas Pavilion, Berkeley, CA

Game No. 19
Washington Huskies (6-12, 1-5, at Stanford Jan. 27)
at California Saturday, Jan. 29, 3 p.m.
Haas Pavilion, Berkeley, CA
TV: Fox Sports Net

A Quick Look at the Golden Bears
After losing its third straight home game, an 81-70 decision to third-ranked Stanford last Saturday, Cal looks to pick up its first Pac-10 victory in Haas Pavilion when the Bears host Washington State and Washington this weekend. Cal won its first five home games this season, but has gone just 1-4 since in Berkeley. Two of the setbacks were to Top 5 teams Arizona and Stanford and a third went into double overtime against Arizona State.

Still, Cal's young squad, which has freshmen as five of its top six scorers, has played much better in Haas than on the road. At home, the Bears are outscoring their opponents by just over seven points per game and are out-rebounding them by a +4.1 margin.

In order to try to steady Cal's ride this year, head coach Ben Braun has tried several different starting lineups, with 11 players already getting at least one start in Pac-10 play. Only freshman guard/forward Brian Wethers has started all five league games, and he has come through to average 10.4 ppg and a team-high-tying 6.2 rpg and 1.0 steals per game. Wethers had his best game against Arizona State Jan. 8 with 16 points, 10 rebounds and four steals.

Overall, junior forward Sean Lampley continues to be the Bears leader in scoring (17.0 ppg), rebounding (7.9 rpg) and minutes (33.3 mpg), as well as the being team's second-best passer (3.2 apg). He has scored at least 20 points five times this year, including a career-high 29 at Oregon, and he has six double-doubles, with the most recent being a 14-point, 12-assist game vs. Davidson Jan. 2. In addition, Lampley was named to all-tournament teams at both the Top of the World Classic and the Golden Bear Classic.

Cal has also received improved play up front in the form of freshman Nick Vander Laan and sophomores Shahar Gordon and Solomon Hughes. Vander Laan scored 15 points and added a personal-best 11 rebounds vs. Stanford, while Gordon, in his first start of the year against the Cardinal, tied a career high with seven points. Hughes is shooting a team-leading 58.3 percent from the floor. Together, the trio of centers is averaging 16.6 ppg and 10.2 rpg.

Probable Starters & Key Reserves

POS NO  NAME               HT     WT   YR   PPG    RPG
F   21  Sean Lampley       6-7   225   Jr   17.0   7.9
Career-high 29 points at Oregon, 6 double-doubles
F   34  Joe Shipp          6-5   215   Fr   10.5   3.2
21 points vs. Arizona State, 24 three-pointers
C   32  Nick Vander Laan  6-10   250   Fr   10.0   6.2
15 points, personal-high 11 rebounds vs. Stanford
G   12  Shantay Legans    5-10   165   Fr    9.0   3.7 apg
28 points vs. ASU, team-high 24 steals
G   25  Brian Wethers      6-5   205   Fr    8.2   4.1
First double-double vs. ASU: 16 points, 10 rebounds
G   3   Donte Smith        6-2   195   FrR   6.6   1.6
Career-high 17 points vs. Davidson (5-6 FG, 1-1 3P, 6-7 FT)
G   10  Raymond King      5-10   170   Sr    2.0   1.2 apg
10 points vs. Arizona State (3-3 FG, 4-4 FT)
C   14  Solomon Hughes    6-11   230   So    5.7   3.2
Leads team with 15 blocks, 58.3 FG%
G   15  Dennis Gates       6-3   190   So    4.9   1.5
Probable for WSU with mild knee sprain at Oregon

Head Coach: Ben Braun (Wisconsin '75) 67-42 at Cal (4th year) 400-277 overall (23rd year)

Cal on the Radio
All California games will be broadcast on KABL Radio (960 AM) in San Francisco and KATD Radio (990 AM) in Concord with Roxy Bernstein calling the action. Each broadcast begins 20 minutes prior to tip-off with the Cal Basketball Pregame Show. After the game, head coach Ben Braun will recap the action on the Cal Basketball Postgame Show. In addition to the radio, broadcasts can be heard on the Internet at
All Cal releases, results, statistics, box scores, schedules and coach and player information, as well as historical data, is available on the Internet at Game recaps and statistics are updated after each contest. The site also includes information on all 27 of Cal's teams.

Cal Radio on Telephone
All Cal basketball radio broadcasts during the 1999-2000 season are available nationwide via telephone through TRZ Telephone Broadcast Services. Fans may access the Cal games from anywhere in the country by dialing 800-846-4700, extension 5918. The cost is 50 cents for the first minute, with decreasing rates for each addition minute.

Haas Pavilion
Cal returned to campus this season with the opening of the new 12,172-seat Walter A. Haas Jr. Pavilion. The $57.5 million facility is a renovated and expanded version of old Harmon Gym. In addition to the basketball court, the building features coaching and administrative office space, locker rooms, a spacious weight room and athletic training facilities, as well as media work and interview rooms. While Haas Pavilion was under construction, Cal played the last two seasons at the New Arena in Oakland.

Cal Coach Ben Braun
Ben Braun (Wisconsin '75), who was named the 14th head coach in Cal history on Sept. 15, 1996, is in his fourth year in Berkeley and 23rd season as collegiate head coach. His record at Cal stands at 67-42, while his career mark, which includes 11 years at Eastern Michigan and eight seasons at Siena Heights College, is 400-277. The 1997 Pac-10 Coach of the Year and a finalist for '97 National Coach of the Year honors, Braun led the Bears to the NCAA Sweet 16 in 1997 and to the NIT championship in 1999. In October 1997, he agreed to a new eight-year contract that extends through the 2004-05 season. At EMU from 1985-96, the three-time MAC Coach of the Year guided the Eagles to three NCAA Tournaments and one NIT appearance with an overall record of 185-132. He was also 148-103 from 1977-85 at Siena Heights. A native of Chicago, Braun played one year of basketball at Wisconsin-LaCrosse before transferring to Wisconsin-Madison, where he earned a teaching degree in English with a minor in African-American studies in 1975. He received his master's degree in guidance and counseling from Siena Heights.

Washington State Scouting Report

A Look at Washington State (5-10, 0-6)
Washington State enters Thursday's game on a seven-game losing streak, having last won on Dec. 20 with a 68-62 victory at Portland State. WSU nearly pulled out its first Pac-10 win last Saturday, but fell to Oregon, 81-80, in overtime. The Cougars are shooting a conference-best 39.2 percent from three-point range.

Cal-Washington State Series History
Cal leads Washington State, 56-39, in the all-time series between the schools. Last year, Cal won, 75-68, in Oakland, while WSU prevailed, 79-73, in Pullman.

WSU Head Coach Paul Graham
Paul Graham is in his first season as head coach as Washington State. He was an assistant for 16 years, most recently at Oklahoma State from 1993-99.

Probable Starters

F34Chris Crosby6-8230Sr16.74.1
F44Eddie Miller6-7214Jr9.69.1
G4Jan-Michael Thomas6-0169Sr15.01.8
G5Mike Bush6-6190So12.46.4
G23David Adams6-2185Fr8.22.7

Washington Scouting Report

A Look at Washington (6-12, 1-5, at Stanford 1/27)
After upsetting UCLA, 63-62, in its Pac-10 opener, Washington has lost five straight games, including two that have gone to overtime. Senior Deon Luton leads the Huskies in scoring with 15.4 ppg, while sophomore Senque Carey is one of the Pac-10 leaders in assists with 5.3 per game.

Cal-Washington Series History
Washington owns a 65-63 lead in the series after winning both games last year: 87-73 in Oakland and 86-61 in Seattle. Cal's last victory was an 84-67 decision in Oakland in '98.

Washington Head Coach Bob Bender
Bob Bender is in his seventh season at Washington and has compiled a 91-96 record, leading the Huskies to postseason appearances the last four years. Prior to moving to Seattle, he was 60-57 in four seasons at Illinois State.

Probable Starters

F33Chris Walcott6-9215Sr7.36.4
F42Thalo Green6-7225Jr6.21.7
G3Senque Carey6-4210So12.95.3 apg
G5Deon Luton6-5205Sr15.43.4
G23Michael Johnson6-4190Jr11.53.5

Golden Bear Breakdown

By Class

Senior (2) Robbie Jones, Raymond King
Junior (1) Sean Lampley
Sophomore (3) Dennis Gates, Shahar Gordon, Solomon Hughes
Freshman (5) Shantay Legans, Joe Shipp, Donte Smith, Nick Vander Laan, Brian Wethers

By Height

6-11 Solomon Hughes
6-10 Shahar Gordon, Nick Vander Laan
6-7 Sean Lampley
6-5 Joe Shipp, Brian Wethers
6-3 Dennis Gates, Robbie Jones
6-2 Donte Smith
5-10 Raymond King, Shantay Legans

Sean Lampley7652
Raymond King*6915
Solomon Hughes4611
Dennis Gates439
Robbie Jones4010
Shahar Gordon384
Shantay Legans1710
Joe Shipp1712
Donte Smith177
Nick Vander Laan178
Brian Wethers1713

Sean Lampley91112.0
Raymond King*2764.0
Solomon Hughes1944.2
Joe Shipp17910.5
Nick Vander Laan17010.0
Shantay Legans1539.0
Dennis Gates1423.3
Brian Wethers1398.2
Donte Smith1126.6
Robbie Jones681.7
Shahar Gordon521.4

Sean Lampley5557.3
Solomon Hughes1252.7
Raymond King*1161.7
Nick Vander Laan1056.2
Brian Wethers704.1
Robbie Jones561.4
Joe Shipp543.2
Shahar Gordon501.3
Dennis Gates481.1
Shantay Legans301.8
Donte Smith271.6

Sean Lampley1451.9
Raymond King*1231.8
Shantay Legans633.7
Brian Wethers382.2
Dennis Gates360.8
Joe Shipp221.3
Donte Smith211.2
Shahar Gordon200.5
Robbie Jones160.4
Nick Vander Laan120.7
Solomon Hughes70.2

*Cal statistics only

Golden Bear Notes

Stanford Muscles Past Cal, 81-70
Forward Mark Madsen scored 19 points and grabbed 11 rebounds to lead third-ranked Stanford to an 81-70 victory over Cal last Saturday in Haas Pavilion. The Bears tried to match Stanford's size with a starting group that included 6-10 Shahar Gordon, 6-10 Nick Vander Laan, 6-5 Brian Wethers and 6-5 Ryan Forehan-Kelly. But Cal shot only 19.2 percent from the floor in the first half and fell behind, 34-25, at the break. In the second half, Cal made just over 56 percent of its shots and closed to within six points at 45-39. However, the Cardinal would not let Cal get any nearer.

Freshman Class Makes Big Impact on Bears
Before the start of the season, head coach Ben Braun stated that all five Cal freshmen would get a chance to contribute right away for the Bears - and the quintet has certainly lived up to expectations. Every freshman has started at least seven games, with Brian Wethers starting 13 and Joe Shipp 12. Five times this year Cal has started four freshmen in a game - including the Pac-10 opener vs. Arizona - with junior Sean Lampley the only veteran in the lineup. As a group, the five newcomers average 44.3 ppg (58.1% of team total), 16.8 rpg (51.6%) and 9.2 apg (60.0%). Shipp, after scoring 21 points vs. Arizona State, ranks second on the squad in scoring with 10.5 ppg, while center Nick Vander Laan, who was named to the Top of the World Classic all-tournament team, is second in rebounding with 6.2 per contest. Guard Shantay Legans had 28 points vs. ASU, paces the Bears in both assists (63) and steals (24), and was voted all-tournament at the Golden Bear Classic. In addition, guards Donte Smith (personal-best 17 points vs. Davidson) and Brian Wethers (8.2 ppg, 38 assists) have provided solid play in the backcourt.

Production By Class in 1999-2000

YearPoints (ppg / %)Rebounds (rpg / %)Assists (apg / %)
Senior35 (2.1 / 2.7%)15 (0.9 / 2.7%)18 (1.1 / 6.9%)
Junior291 (17.1 / 22.4%)134 (7.9 / 24.2%)55 (3.2 / 21.2%)
Sophomore218 (12.8 / 16.8%)119 (7.0 / 21.5%)28 (1.6 / 10.8%)
Freshman753 (44.3 / 58.1%)286 (16.8 / 51.6%)156 (9.2 / 60.0%)

% = percent of team total

Bears Raise Shooting Percentages Across the Board
After ranking at or near the bottom of the Pac-10 in every shooting category last year, Cal has raised its percentages in field goals, three-pointers and free throws this season. As a unit, the Bears are making 46.8 percent of their attempts from the floor, sinking at least 50 percent six times. As a comparison, Cal shot just 43.2 percent from the floor and made more than half its shots on only three occasions all of last season. From three-point range, the Bears are at 33.5 percent (5.2 3FG per game) this year after rating last in the conference at 31.0 percent (3.5 3FG per game) in 1998-99. The same improvement is true from the free throw line. This year's squad is shooting 71.1 percent after making 67.1 percent last season. The last time Cal shot at least 70 percent from the line was in 1989-90 (70.4%).

Individually, several Cal players are putting up some impressive numbers. Four players are at 50 percent from the field or higher, including Sean Lampley (52.7%), Nick Vander Laan (52.5%) and Solomon Hughes (58.3%). From beyond the arc, Shantay Legans is shooting 42.6 percent (20-47). Legans also leads four players who are better than 85 percent from the free throw line, the freshman from Goleta has made 35 of his 38 tries (Pac-10 leading 92.1%). In addition, Dennis Gates is 13-for-15 (86.7%), Joe Shipp is 31-for-36 (86.1%) and Raymond King is 9-for-10 (90.0%). The school record, by the way, is 89.1 percent by Dan Lufkin in 1963.

Wethers Showing All-Around Abilities for Bears
Although he doesn't lead Cal in any statistical category, freshman guard/forward Brian Wethers has proven to be one of the Bears best all-around performers. Averaging 8.2 ppg, Wethers is second on the squad in steals (16) while also ranking third on the team in rebounding (4.1 rpg) and assists (38). In Pac-10 play, he is second to Sean Lampley in scoring at 10.4 ppg and is tied for team honors with 6.2 rpg. He had, perhaps, his best game against Arizona State, setting career highs with 16 points and 10 rebounds. In addition, Wethers leads all Cal freshmen with 13 starts this season.

Pac-10 Standings

Arizona State3-311-6
Oregon State2-310-6
Washington State0-65-10

This Week in the Pac-10

Jan. 26
Arizona at Arizona State

Jan. 27
Washington State at California, Washington at Stanford, USC at Oregon, UCLA at Oregon State

Jan. 29
Arizona at LSU, Arizona State at North Carolina State, Washington at California, Washington State at Stanford, UCLA at Oregon, USC at Oregon State

Pac-10 Teleconferences
The Pac-10 will hold media-only teleconferences with Pac-10 head coaches 10 times throughout the 1999-2000 season. Media should call the Pac-10 office at 925-932-4411 to obtain the number. A taped replay of the teleconference will be available beginning at 4 p.m. PT following each call at 402-220-9927. Below are the teleconference dates for this season:

Tuesday, Jan. 11
Tuesday, Jan. 18
Tuesday, Jan. 25
Tuesday, Feb. 1
Tuesday, Feb. 8
Tuesday, Feb. 15
Tuesday, Feb. 22
Tuesday, Feb. 29
Tuesday, March 7

The order of coaches is as follows:

10:35 a.m.E. Kent, Oregon
10:43 a.m.R. Evans, ASU
10:51 a.m.E. Payne, OSU
10:59 a.m.L. Olson, Arizona
11:07 a.m.B. Braun, California
11:15 a.m.P. Graham, WSU
11:23 a.m.M. Montgomery, Stanford
11:31 a.m.H. Bibby, USC
11:39 a.m.B. Bender, Washington
11:47 a.m.S. Lavin, UCLA

Lampley Lights the Way for Bears
Junior forward Sean Lampley, Cal's only returning starter from the 1999 NIT champion team, has handled his veteran status well, leading the team in scoring (17.0 ppg), rebounding (7.9 rpg) and minutes (33.3 mpg) and ranking second in assists (3.2 apg). He scored a career-best 29 points at Oregon (11-19 FG, 7-10 FT), which topped his previous high of 28 points set against Fresno State in the first round of last year's NIT. This season, Lampley has also tallied 26 points vs. Houston and 23 points against Gonzaga. In addition, he has had double-doubles six times this year, with the first five coming in the points and rebounds variety - 16-12 vs. TCU, 26-12 vs. Houston, 22-13 vs. Pacific, 16-10 vs. UC Irvine and 17-10 vs. Boston Univ. Lampley then had 14 points and a career-best 12 assists against Davidson Jan. 2, giving him 19 career double-doubles. The assist total was a record for a Cal forward and the most for any Cal player in almost five years. For the year, his 55 assists are more than he had in either of his first two full seasons with the Bears (45 in both '97-98 and '98-99). With 911 career points and 555 career rebounds, his current pace would put him in the 1,000-point, 500-rebound club by the middle of February.

Young Bears Play Better at Home
With so many freshmen and sophomores on the roster, the Bears are, not surprisingly, finding that they play much better at home than on the road. In the new Haas Pavilion this season, Cal is 6-4, while the Bears are 1-2 on opponent home courts. Statistically speaking, the differences are just a great. Below is a comparison of how Cal has performed at home and on opponent floors as the Bears head into their weekend series against Washington State and Washington.

FG%3P%FT%PPGOpp PPGReb MarginTO Margin
Haas Pavilion47.334.072.778.070.9+4.1+3.5
Opponent Floor40.328.369.067.076.0-1.3-6.7

Walk-on Forehan-Kelly Has Breakout Game at OSU
Sophomore Ryan Forehan-Kelly, a 6-5 forward from Irvine, had scored just 12 points all year heading into Cal's game at Oregon State Jan. 15. But in 19 minutes against the Beavers, he tallied a career-high and team-best 17 points (6-7 FG, 4-5 3P, 1-2 FT) with four rebounds and two steals. That performance earned him his first start the next Saturday against Stanford (0 points, 4 rebounds). Forehan-Kelly, who is in his second year as a walk-on for the Bears, has appeared 15 of Cal's 17 games this season, mostly backing up starting forward Sean Lampley. His results against OSU easily bettered his previous high - four points vs. UC Irvine earlier this season. Forehan-Kelly is one of five walk-ons on the Cal roster, a list that also includes seniors J.T. Stephens, Cassidy Raher and Ryan Meyers, and junior Morgan Lingle.

Unselfish Bears Spread the Ball Around
Although no individual is averaging more than 4.0 assists per game, this year's Bears represent Cal's best passing team in several seasons. Through 17 games, Cal has 260 assists for an average of 15.29 per game. Even though Cal ranks near the bottom of the Pac-10, it's quite an improvement from last year when the team averaged just 12.67 assists per contest. In addition to team-leader Shantay Legans' 3.7 apg, junior forward Sean Lampley (3.2 apg), freshman guard Brian Wethers (2.2 apg), freshman guard Donte Smith (1.2 apg), freshman guard Joe Shipp (1.3 apg), senior guard Raymond King (1.2 apg) and sophomore guard Dennis Gates (1.4 apg) are all averaging at least one assist per game. Lampley set a school record for a Cal forward with 12 assists vs. Davidson Jan. 2 - the highest total for a Cal player since Jelani Gardner had 13 at USC on Jan. 26, 1995. Legans had a best of eight assists (0 turnovers) against Hofstra, while Wethers dished out five assists vs. Davidson. As a team, Cal is 7-0 when it has at least 17 assists in a game, but just 3-7 with 16 or less.

Pac-10 Statistical Leaders

(as of Jan. 24, 2000)



4. Sean Lampley17.0 ppg


T3. Sean Lampley7.9 rpg
17. Nick Vander Laan6.2 rpg


8. Shantay Legans3.71 apg

Field Goal Shooting

9. Sean Lampley52.7%

3-Point Shooting

7. Shantay Legans42.6%

Free Throw Shooting

1. Shantay Legans92.1%


Scoring Offense5th76.3 ppg
Scoring Defense7th72.3 ppg
Scoring Margin8th+4.0
FG Shooting4th46.8%
3P Shooting8th33.5%
FT Shooting5th71.1%
FG Pct. Defense8th44.6%
3P Pct. Defense10th38.4%
Rebound Margin6th+2.9
Assists8th15.29 apg
Blocks9th2.41 bpg
Steals5th7.82 spg
Turnover Margin5th+1.29

Trio Provides Support in the Middle
Sophomore center Solomon Hughes, freshman center Nick Vander Laan and sophomore center Shahar Gordon have given the Bears a stronger presence in the middle this year than they have in recent seasons. Hughes, who has started nine games, is averaging 5.7 ppg on 58.3 percent shooting from the floor. He has twice broken his career high this season, first with 11 points vs. Boston University, then with 12 against Davidson. He also had 10 points and a career-best eight rebounds at Oregon. Vander Laan, a member of the staring lineup eight times, ranks third on the Bears with 10.0 ppg (52.5 FG%) and second with 6.2 rpg. He had a high of 23 points against Oklahoma and was named to the all-tournament team at the Golden Bear Classic. Vander Laan also posted his first double-double against Arizona with 14 points and 10 boards, then had 15 points and 11 rebounds vs. Stanford. Gordon, who missed five games following arthroscopic knee surgery Dec. 17, got his first start of the year against Stanford last weekend. He came through with a career-high-tying seven points and three rebounds.

Recent Cal Center Production
1999-2000: Solomon Hughes, Nick Vander Laan, Shahar Gordon - 16.8 ppg, 10.2 rpg, 51.7 FG%
1998-99: Francisco Elson, Solomon Hughes, Shahar Gordon - 9.4 ppg, 8.1 rpg, 48.2 FG%
1997-98: Francisco Elson, Kenyon Jones - 10.8 ppg, 8.2 ppg, 45.5 FG%
1996-97: Michael Stewart, Kenyon Jones - 11.2 ppg, 7.6 rpg, 51.6 FG%

Gates Hopes for Return against WSU
Sophomore guard Dennis Gates, who has started seven games for the Bears this season, has sat out Cal's last two games against Oregon State and Stanford with a mild right knee sprain suffered late in the Oregon contest. He returned to limited practice last week and is probable for this week's contests vs. Washington State and Washington.

Gordon to Return to Israel after Season
Sophomore center Shahar Gordon will return to his native Israel after the season to fulfill his two-year military commitment. Gordon, who has averaged 1.9 ppg and 1.5 rpg in 10 games this season, has already received two one-year exemptions to play at Cal. His military service begins April 2 and he plans to work with his professors to be able to complete his spring semester coursework overseas. Gordon said he would consider a return to Cal once his military obligation is completed.

Bear Squad Youngest in School History
With only three upperclassmen among its 11 scholarship players, this year's Cal team is the youngest in school history. The Bears lost four starters and their sixth man following their NIT championship run last spring, leaving them with just two seniors and one junior for the upcoming campaign. A look at past rosters shows that every previous Cal squad had at least four upperclassmen. Below is a look at several of the youngest squads to play for the Bears:


Golden Bear Notes
Head coach Ben Braun picked up his 400th career victory with a 71-65 win at Oregon State Jan. 15 ... the 10 three-pointers (19 attempts) by Cal against San Jose State were the most for the Bears since they had 11 (19 attempts) at Stanford on Jan. 31, 1996 ... Cal shot 53.2 percent from the floor against TCU (33-62) and 54.3 percent from the field against Houston (38-70) - the first time the Bears have shot at least 50 percent in consecutive games since they did it against Oregon State and Stanford Jan. 5 & 10, 1996, the Bears repeated the feat vs. San Jose State (57.1%) and UC Irvine (51.6%) ... Cal also scored 90+ points two games in a row vs. TCU (91) and Houston (95) for the first time since November 1995 against Northern Arizona and Texas Southern ... when Joe Shipp and Nick Vander Laan each scored 20 points vs. TCU last week, it marked the highest scoring output for a Cal freshman in his debut game since Shareef Abdur-Rahim had 33 vs. Northern Arizona in 1995 ... Shantay Legans had five three-pointers vs. San Jose State, the most for a Cal player since Geno Carlisle had five at Oregon State on Jan. 5, 1998.