Bears Welcome Final Nonconference In-State Foe Cal Poly
Courtesy: Cal Athletics  
Release:  12/14/2010

Dec. 14, 2010

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California (5-4, 0-0) vs. Cal Poly (3-6, 0-0)
Date: Saturday, Dec. 18, 2010
Time: 2 p.m. PT
Location: Haas Pavilion, Berkeley, Calif.
TV: None
Radio: KNEW 910

Following the short break for finals this week, the California men's basketball team returns to the hardwood to face Cal Poly Saturday, Dec. 18, at 2 p.m. at Haas Pavilion. The Golden Bears have dropped their last two games on the home court, as they continue their five-game homestand.

Cal (5-4) lost to Southern Mississippi, 80-78, last Sunday at Haas Pavilion. Junior forward Harper Kamp posted his second 20-point outing of the season to lead the Bears against the Golden Eagles. He scored 10 of those 20 points within the first five minutes of the second half. It was Kamp's most efficient game at Cal, as he was a perfect 7-for-7 from the field and 6-for-6 from the free throw line. Junior guard Nigel Carter set a new personal best in scoring with 16, nailing all four of his three-point attempts. He surpassed his previous personal best (6) by 10 points. Fellow junior guard Jorge Gutierrez was the third Bear to reach double figures, posting 10 points along with eight assists that tied his personal best. He also snared three steals to add to his team-leading 15 on the campaign.

Senior center Markhuri Sanders-Frison was also perfect from the field against the Eagles, making all three shots he took. He also paced Cal with six rebounds, and has now led the Bears on the boards six times this season.

Kamp currently leads the Pac-10 in free throw shooting at 91.7 percent (33-36). Gutierrez has been solid from the charity stripe, as well (46-57), as well as freshman guard Allen Crabbe (13-16).

A team that will pride itself on its defense all year, the Bears' defense is holding opposing offenses to shoot just over 40 percent from the field (40.6). Cal boasts 59 steals on the campaign, led by Gutierrez's 15. Freshman forward Richard Solomon is second on that list with 10 after notching two against Southern Miss.

Boasting a 3-2 record in Haas Pavilion thus far this year, Cal has won 41 of its last 45 nonconference home games. Cal went 15-1 for the entire 2009-10 season at Haas Pavilion, with the lone defeat coming in overtime against UCLA. In 2008-09, the Bears were 9-0 in Berkeley against teams outside the Pac-10. In his first three years as head coach at Cal, Mike Montgomery currently has a record of 34-5 on the home court.

With the win over UC Davis on Dec. 1, Montgomery reached 50 wins at Cal in 74 games -- faster than any coach at Cal since Nibs Price won 50 of his first 60 games from 1924-25 through the start of the 1928-29 season. He is also two wins away from his 600th career collegiate head coaching victory. His 598 career wins currently ranks sixth among active Division I NCAA head coaches.

Probable Starters

POS    NO   NAME                                HT   WT   YR   PPG   RPG
F      22   Harper Kamp                         6-8  245  Jr.  13.6  5.6
Collected 20 points against So. Miss.
C      10   Markhuri Sanders-Frison             6-7  265  Sr.   8.4  7.6
Paced Cal on the board six of nine times this season
G       2   Jorge Gutierrez                     6-3  195  Jr.  12.9  4.1 (APG)
Notched eight assists vs. So. Miss.
G      23   Allen Crabbe                        6-6  205  Fr.   7.9  4.8
Secured his first collegiate double-double vs. Notre Dame (10 pts, 10 reb)
G       4   Gary Franklin                       6-2  195  Fr.   8.2  1.2
Led Cal in scoring with 13 points against UC Davis

Cal Poly Scouting Report
A Look at Cal Poly

Cal Poly most recently lost at San Diego State, 51-45, on Dec. 13. The Mustangs' leading scorer is David Hanson at 15.3. Cal Poly's leading rebounder is Will Donahue (8.1). Cal Poly has picked up wins over Hawai'i and in-state foes, Loyola Marymount and Cal State Monterey Bay.

Cal-Cal Poly Series History
The all-time series is tied at one between these two teams. The last time they met, the Mustangs were victorious, 63-62, during the 2003-04 campaign.

Cal Poly Head Coach Joe Callero
Joe Callero is in his second season as head coach of Cal Poly. Callero's initial 2009-10 season ended with a 12-19 overall record and the 5-2 start in conference play was the program's best beginning as a member of the Big West. Predicted to finish last in the Big West, Cal Poly instead clinched the No. 6 seed for the 2010 Big West Tournament.

Probable Starters

Pos    No   Name                                Ht   Wt  Yr    Ppg  Rpg
F      34   David Hanson                       6-5  195  Jr.  15.3  5.2
C      44   Will Donahue                       6-8  265  Jr.   8.6  8.1
G      23   Shawn Lewis                        6-4  210  Sr.  13.6  6.1
G       2   Chris O'Brien                      6-4  205  So.   6.1  3.0
G       3   Malik Love                         6-3  205  Fr.   5.7  2.1

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Golden Bear Notes
Golden Eagles Outshine Golden Bears, 80-78

A second-half comeback propelled by Gary Flowers helped Southern Miss. hand Cal its second straight loss at Haas Pavilion on Dec. 12. With just under three minutes remaining in the game, the Bears held a 76-70 lead over the Golden Eagles, but Southern. Miss. went on a 10-2 run to close out the game. Harper Kamp scored 20 points for the second time this season to lead the Bears. Cal also got another huge lift from one of its bench players. This time it came from Nigel Carter, who shot 4-for-4 from behind the arc to earn a career high of 16 points.

Getting Help Off the Bench
There's no question that the strength of this year's Cal squad comes from its three veterans - Harper Kamp, Jorge Gutierrez and Markhuri Sanders-Frison. The Bears have been lucky enough to also get some huge performances from some players off the bench. Sophomore forward Bak Bak and Nigel Carter have turned in career-high outings so far this season, and Cal is also getting quality minutes each game from sophomore guard Brandon Smith and freshman forward Richard Solomon. Bak played a huge role in Cal's wins over UC Davis and at Iowa State. He produced career highs in scoring (12) and rebounds (6) against UC Davis and collected nine points and five rebounds at Iowa State, including some clutch free throw shooting in the final minute of the game to help seal the win. Carter shot 4-for-4 from behind the arc to earn a personal-best 16 points against Southern Miss. In his past three games, Smith has played over 20 minutes, shot 5-for-6 from the free throw line and posted 13 assists. Solomon is second on the team in steals (10) and blocks (5).

Gutierrez Leads the Way for the Bears
Jorge Gutierrez has reached double figures in seven of the nine games this season, after recording just four double-figure scoring performances last season. Ever the tough defender, Gutierrez's 15 steals, part of the team's 59, leads the team. He tied his season high with three against Southern Miss. He is second on the team in scoring at 12.9 ppg, and set new career highs in scoring in the first two games of the season (18 vs. Cal State Northridge and 20 vs. New Mexico). Taking over as the team's primary point guard, Gutierrez has recorded a personal-best eight assists twice this season. He posted 19 points against San Diego State on Dec. 8, and shot 9-for-9 from the free throw line. In the past four games, Gutierrez has gone 23-for-27 at the charity stripe.

Montgomery Approaching 600 wins
With the victory over UC Davis on Dec. 1, Mike Montgomery reached 50 wins at Cal in 74 games -- faster than any coach at Cal since Nibs Price won 50 of his first 60 games from 1924-25 through the start of the 1928-29 season. He is also two wins away from his 600th career collegiate head coaching victory. His 598 career wins currently ranks sixth among active Division I NCAA head coaches.

Harper Kamp: Picking Up Where He Left Off
After redshirting last season due to a nagging knee injury, Harper Kamp has jumped into the fire as one of the Bears' most reliable players this season. Kamp posted a career-best 25 points against New Mexico on Nov. 20, and secured his second 20-point outing against Southern Miss. last Sunday. He also had a career day at Iowa State on Dec. 4, recording his first career double-double (14 points, 10 rebounds). The 10 boards were a new career high for Kamp, and he also tied his personal best in assists (5) and set a new career best in blocks (3). Kamp is currently first on the team in scoring (13.6) and second in rebounding (5.6). After making his first 10 free throws, he has made 33 of his 36 tries (.917) from the charity stripe, including a perfect 6-for-6 effort against the Golden Eagles, which is the best in the Pac-10 right now. In his last four games, Kamp has only missed one free throw (17-18).

Sanders-Frison Makes an Immediate Impact
After battling back spasms through the second half of last season, Markhuri Sanders-Frison has led Cal in rebounding six of the nine games this season, boasting nine rebounds twice. He notched a new career high in rebounding against San Diego State on Dec. 8 with 12. Sanders-Frison's efforts on the boards have helped Cal currently lead the conference in defensive rebounds at 26.4 per game. Sanders-Frison is also pacing the Bears on the boards at 7.6 rpg on the season. He posted double figures in scoring three consecutive games earlier this season, including a 12-point effort at Iowa State on Dec. 4. He got his senior season off to a great start with his first career double-double against Cal State Northridge on Nov. 16. Sanders-Frison tallied a personal-best 15 points and tied his then-career high in rebounds with 10. He shot 4-for-6 from the field and 7-for-10 from the free throw line. His 8.4 ppg ranks third on the team.

Smith Getting a Lot of Playing Time at the Point
Jorge Gutierrez is clearly Cal's starting point guard, but Brandon Smith has filled in admirably when Gutierrez has needed a spell at the point. In his past three games, Smith has played over 20 minutes, shot 5-for-6 from the free throw line and posted 13 assists. Last Sunday against Southern Miss., Smith recorded six assists, one shy of his personal best of seven that he earned against New Mexico on Nov. 20. Against Iowa State on Dec. 4, Smith tallied eight points, one away from tying his career high of nine that also came against New Mexico.

Crabbe Gets First Collegiate Double-Double
Allen Crabbe earned his first collegiate double-double when he notched 10 points and 10 rebounds against Notre Dame on Nov. 26. Crabbe is averaging 7.9 ppg and third on the team in rebounds at 4.8 rpg. Crabbe has also been good on 13 of his 16 tries from the free throw line. He just missed getting his first double-double against Temple on Nov. 25, when he boasted a season-best 12 points and eight rebounds. He nailed three treys at Iowa State. Against Southern Miss. last Sunday, Crabbe boasted two assists and two steals. His eight steals rank third on the team.

Pete Newell Classic
To honor the legacy of Hall of Fame basketball coach Pete Newell Cal Athletics will designate one men's home game each year as the Pete Newell Classic, beginning with the Bears' matchup with No. 4 Kansas on Dec. 22. In addition, the Pete Newell Career Achievement Award will be presented to a deserving former men's basketball player at a ceremony during the Classic game. The award will be given to a Cal men's basketball alumnus who has distinguished himself in his career accomplishments, upholding the highest ideals of Coach Newell and the University of California. The 2010 recipient will be announced prior to the Pete Newell Classic.

Cal's Freshman Class was Ranked in the Top 20
Cal's freshman class this season was ranked No. 17 by and No. 24 by ESPN. Leading the way is guard Allen Crabbe out of Price HS in Los Angeles, who was named the 2010 California Gatorade Player of the Year and Parade All-American. Among Cal's other standout recruits is Gary Franklin (Mater Dei HS), whom ESPN listed as the No. 66 recruit in the nation. Two other newcomers join the squad from the Los Angeles area - freshman forward Richard Solomon and Justin Cobbs, a sophomore transfer from Minnesota who attended Bishop Montgomery HS. Solomon was a high school teammate of Crabbe's and was rated the No. 20 power forward in the nation by One of the Bears' later signings, Emerson Murray from Vancouver, British Columbia, played on the Canadian Junior National team this past summer and was regarded by Hoopstars Canada as the second-best backcourt prospect in Canada. Alex Rossi is a natural shooter who is also known for his defensive abilities.

Golden Bear Notes
Max Zhang, Cal's 7-3 center who would have been a junior this season, recently signed with a professional team in China, ending his collegiate career ... Harper Kamp played chess competitively as a child ... Brandon Smith, a graduate of De La Salle High School, has been to four different continents, including working for an outreach program for schools and orphanages in India ... Emerson Murray comes from a family with a history of competing in track and field. His father is a long time track and field coach, and his sister was a member of the Canadian National Track and Field team and competed at Hawaii ... The lone signee this fall for the Bears was 6-9, 210-forward Davis Kravish out of Lee's Summit, Mo ... Cal's Pac-10 title last season was the Bears' first since 1960 ... Cal was 24-11 overall and 13-5 in the conference in 2009-10 ... Mike Montgomery has won 46 games in his first two seasons in Berkeley, breaking the school record of 39 set by Lou Campanelli in 1986 and '87.
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