Wildcats Await as California Opens February Slate
Courtesy: Cal Athletics  
Release:  01/31/2012

Jan. 31, 2012

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Game #23
California (17-5, 7-2) vs. Arizona (14-8, 5-4)
Haas Pavilion | Berkeley, Calif.
Thursday, Feb 2 - 8 p.m. PT
Series Record: Arizona leads, 54-28
Last 10 vs. Arizona: 3-7
Current Streak: Arizona, 2
Last Meeting: L, 107-105 3OT  (Feb. 5, 2011 | Berkeley, Calif.)
Radio: NewsTalk 910AM (Roxy Bernstein and Todd McKim)
Satellite Radio: SiriusXM 91 / XM Satellite 91
TV: Fox Sports Net / Comcast SportsNet Bay Area Plus (Channel Finder)
    (Steve Physioc, Marques Johnson, Rebecca Haarlow)
Opponent Web: www.ArizonaWildcats.com

BERKELEY - The Golden Bears (17-5, 7-2 Pac-12) can equal last season's win total with a victory over the visiting Wildcats (14-8, 5-4) on Thursday. Cal showed no ill-effects from a road loss to Washington State as it took out rival Stanford, 69-59, on Sunday evening before a sold-out crowd of 11,877. It was Haas Pavilion's first sellout since Feb. 27, 2010, when the Bears defeated Arizona State, 62-46, to win the Pac-10 regular-season title.

Cal opens the second half of its conference schedule with its only regular-season meeting against Arizona. Due to the Pac-12's 18-game schedule, the Bears will only face the Wildcats and the Sun Devils, once, this season; both at home. It will be Cal's only chance for revenge against an Arizona squad that claimed a pair of two-point victories, last year, to sweep the season series.

Arizona won, 73-71, in Tucson, Ariz., on Jan. 6, 2011; a game in which the Bears led by six points with eight minutes left on the clock. On Feb. 5, the Wildcats visited Berkeley and overcame a five-point hole with under a minute left to send the game to its first of three overtimes. Arizona held on for a 107-105 victory and went on to win the Pac-10's regular-season crown before making a run to the NCAA's national quarterfinals.

The Wildcats will have their work cut out for them as the Bears have dominated the opposition at Haas Pavilion, this year. Cal is 14-0 in home games and extended its streak to 17 straight, which dates back to a 76-72 win over UCLA on Feb. 20, 2011. The last time the Bears won as many consecutive home games was from Feb. 2, 2002 through Feb. 15, 2003. Cal is outscoring opponents by 20.5 points and grabbing 7.6 more rebounds than its visitors. The Bears also hold a considerable edge in shooting percentage with a .505 to .365 advantage.

Senior F Harper Kamp will be appearing in his 122 game as a Bear and would move into eighth place for career games at Cal. He is averaging 9.7 ppg and 5.0 rpg in his senior season. A shade behind, senior G Jorge Gutierrez will appear in his 118 game and carries 14.1 ppg and 5.3 rpg while leading the Bears in steals, this year with 28.

In the backcourt, sophomore G Allen Crabbe leads the team in scoring (15.8 ppg) and rebounding (6.1 rpg). He ranks fourth in the conference in offensive production. Fellow backcourt running mate Justin Cobbs puts up 13.0 ppg and is third in the league for assists (4.7 apg).

GAME RECAP (STANFORD): The Golden Bears used a 12-3 run with just over five minutes left in the game to create a 56-46 lead against rival Stanford and came up with a 69-59 win to maintain a spotless 14-0 record in games at Haas Pavilion, this season. Before a sell-out crowd of 11,877, Cal extended its streak of home victories to 17 straight; the longest since it also won 17 in a row from Feb. 2, 2002, through Feb. 15, 2003. The victory was also Cal's first four-game home winning streak against the Cardinal since 1968-72. Senior G Jorge Gutierrez finished with a career-high 12 rebounds to go with 11 points, three assists, and two steals, and sophomore G Allen Crabbe had 18 points to get the Bears back on the winning track. Senior F Harper Kamp had 15 points on just five shots from the field (4-for-5 FG) and added six rebound and three assists while sophomore G Justin Cobbs dropped 13 points and two assists. Stanford got 11 points apiece from Dwight Powell and Stefan Nastic but became the 12th team to be held under 40-percent shooting against the Bears, this season. Josh Owens had nine points and nine rebounds for the Cardinal which was sent to its third consecutive loss; its longest such streak of the year. In recognition of Coaches vs. Cancer week, the team donned pink shoes while the coaching staff wore sneakers with their suits.

GOLD OUT HAAS PAVILION: Fans are invited to join the Golden Bears as they Gold Out Haas Pavilion in their game against Arizona on Feb. 2. The team will don their gold jerseys and The Bench (Cal's famous student-section) will be wearing gold t-shirts. Use the hash tag #GoldOutHaas, on Twitter, to join the conversation.

WASTE NOT, WANT NOT: Cal's game against Arizona State at Haas Pavilion on Saturday, Feb. 4, has been designated as a zero-waste initiative game. The collaboration between Cal Athletics and Campus Recycling and Refuse Services, is supported by corporate sponsor Recology. Fans in attendance will see bins for recycling and composting with the slogan Blue & Gold Makes Green, instead of trash receptacles. Cal Athletics' concessions, catering, and merchandizing partners will also modify menus and packaging to help reach the zero-waste goal. Cal joins a small, but growing, list of universities nationwide striving for zero waste at athletic events. Others include UC Davis, Colorado, and Ohio State. The Cal program is part of the campus' overall commitment to be a responsible steward of resources and demonstrate leadership in sustainable business practices. The plan is also in line with the University's sustainability policy and the City of Berkeley's goal of achieving zero waste by the year 2020, eliminating all materials normally sent to landfills.

INFINITI COACHES CHARITY CHALLENGE: This spring, head coach Mike Montgomeryis participating in the Infiniti Coaches Charity Challenge. Fans are able to vote for their favorite college coaches by region and while each coach's charity of choice will receive $5,000, the winning coach will garner $100,000 for their charity. Coach Montgomery has selected Coaches vs. Cancer to be his beneficiary. Vote, today, at www.espn.com/infiniti.

BUILDING A CASE: Although the Pac-12 has played through the national perception that it is a weak conference this season, the Bears have climbed the ratings as the year has progressed. As of January 30, Cal was rated 19th in the Pomeroy College Basketball Ratings (www.kenpom.com) and 21st in the Sagarin Ratings Index (www.usatoday.com/sports/sagarin/bkt1112.htm). The Bears opened the season ranked in both the AP and Coaches Top 25 polls but have been unranked for several weeks.