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Cal Heads to Desert to Face Arizona, ASU
Courtesy: Cal Athletics  
Release:  02/11/2008

Feb. 11, 2008

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California Golden Bears (14-8, 5-6) at Arizona Wildcats (15-8, 5-5)
Thursday, Feb. 14, 5:30 p.m. PT/6:30 p.m. MT, McKale Center, Tucson, AZ
Radio: KYOU (1550 AM)
TV: Comcast SportsNet

California Golden Bears at Arizona State Sun Devils (15-7, 5-5, vs. Stanford 2/14)
Saturday, Feb. 16, 3 p.m. PT/4 p.m. MT, Wells Fargo Arena, Tempe, AZ
Radio: KYOU (1550 AM)
TV: Comcast SportsNet

California, now 14-8 overall and 5-6 in the Pac-10, returns to the road this week to visit Arizona Thursday and Arizona State Saturday. Both contests will be televised back to Northern California by Comcast SportsNet.

Although the Golden Bears are tied for seventh in the conference standings, they are just one game out of third place and meet a pair of schools that are directly ahead of them, as both Arizona and ASU are 5-5 in league play.

Sophomore F Ryan Anderson had the highest-scoring weekend of his career the last time Cal faced the Wildcats and Sun Devils. During the first round of Pac-10 action, he had 32 points and 15 rebounds against ASU Jan. 17 and followed up two days later with 30 points and seven boards vs. Arizona.

Now 12th in the country in scoring with 21.9 ppg, Anderson has reached double figures in 25 consecutive games dating back to last year. In addition to his point production, he is shooting 46.2 percent from three-point range (2nd in Pac-10) and ranks third in the conference in both free throw accuracy (87.4%) and rebounding (9.9 rpg).

Senior C DeVon Hardin returned to the lineup last weekend vs. Oregon State and Oregon after missing the Jan. 31-Feb. 2 Washington-WSU road trip with a viral infection. He came off the bench in both contests and contributed 11.0 ppg, sinking 9-of-11 shots from the floor. Over his past five games, Hardin has connected on 23-of-32 field goal attempts (71.9%).

As a team, the Bears are pouring in 78.5 ppg, their highest output since 1994-95 and a 9.0 ppg increase over last year. Not only is Cal draining 47.9 percent of its shots - which would tie for the best rate under head coach Ben Braun - but the Bears are making 77.1 percent from the free throw line, which is ahead of the school-record pace they established last season (76.9%).

Cal's next win will be the 550th of Braun's career. He ranks 10th among active Division I coaches in total victories, owning a 549-381 mark in his 31st season.

Probable Starters
POS  NO   NAME                  HT    WT   YR   PPG   RPG
F    10   Jamal Boykin          6-8   235  So   8.2   4.6
Started last 4 games; scored in double figures 5 of last 6 games 
F    14   Eric Vierneisel       6-7   210  Sr   4.9   2.3
Career-high 15 points vs. USC; dished out 45 assists (2.1 apg) 
F    34   Ryan Anderson         6-10  240  So   21.9  9.9
2-time Pac-10 Player of the Week; road averages: 26.5 ppg, 12.3 rpg
G     3   Jerome Randle         5-10  165  So   11.8  4.0 apg
17 points, 4 assists vs. Oregon 2/9; Golden Bear Classic MVP
F    23   Patrick Christopher   6-5   215  So   15.9  3.6
15 or more pts. in 16 games; 20 pts., including game-winner, at UW

Cal Head Coach Ben Braun
Ben Braun (Wisconsin '75), the second-winningest coach in Cal history, is in his 12th year in Berkeley and 31st season as a collegiate head coach. His record at Cal stands at 216-146, while his career mark - which includes 11 years at Eastern Michigan and eight seasons at Siena Heights College - is 549-381. The 1997 Pac-10 Coach of the Year and one of 25 finalists for the 2003 Naismith National Coach of the Year award, Braun has led the Bears to the postseason seven times. After taking Cal to the NCAA Sweet 16 in 1997, he guided the Bears to the NIT championship in 1999 and to the NIT quarterfinals in 2000. He also directed Cal to consecutive NCAA Tournaments in 2001, '02 and '03, plus another NCAA berth in 2006. 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 earned a teaching degree in English with a minor in African-American studies at Wisconsin in 1975. He received his master's degree in guidance and counseling from Siena Heights.

Arizona Scouting Report

A Look at Arizona
Arizona enters Thursday's game have lost two in a row after a four-game winning streak. In last Sunday's 59-54 setback to Arizona State, Jerryd Bayless scored 39 points to lift his team-leading average to 20.0 ppg. Chase Budinger contributes 17.2 ppg and paces the Wildcats with 52 three-pointers (38.0%), while Jordan Hill is grabbing 8.0 rpg and has blocked 43 shots on the season.

Cal-Arizona Series History
Arizona owns a 50-25 mark against Cal in a series that dates back to the 1923-24 season. The Wildcats swept both contests last year - 94-85 in Tucson and 70-65 in Berkeley - and claimed a 79-75 decision at Haas Pavilion on Jan. 19, 2008, despite 30 points by Ryan Anderson. The Bears' most recent victory came in 2006 when they won, 75-66, in Berkeley, while Cal's last win in Tucson was 74-72 on Feb. 12, 1995.

Arizona Head Coach Kevin O'Neill (interim)
Kevin O'Neill is serving as interim coach for Arizona this season while long-time coach Lute Olson takes a leave of absence. O'Neill has held head positions at Marquette, Tennessee and Northwestern, in addition to one year as head coach of the NBA's Toronto Raptors.

Probable Starters
Pos  No   Name              Ht    Wt   Yr   Ppg   Rpg
F    34   Chase Budinger    6-7   203  So   17.2  5.3
G    43   Jordan Hill       6-10  226  So   12.6  8.0
G     0   Jerryd Bayless    6-3   199  Fr   20.0  2.7
G     5   Jawann McClellan  6-4   204  Sr   9.1   4.0
G    12   Daniel Dillon     6-3   197  Sr   2.5   1.1

For more information: www.arizonaathletics.com

Arizona State Scouting Report

A Look at Arizona State
Arizona, which hosts Stanford Thursday, has 15 wins this season after finishing 8-22 last year. Jeff Pendergraph is coming off a 29-point, 8-rebound game at Arizona. He is shooting 61.3 percent from the field (129-236) and owns a team-best 40 steals. James Harden has 11 20-point games on the year and is contributing 18.1 ppg overall.

Cal-ASU Series History
Arizona State holds a narrow 34-30 series lead over Cal, although the Bears have won 10 of the last 15 meetings. Last year, Cal claimed a 66-62 decision in overtime in Tempe, and the Bears are 6-1 at Wells Fargo Arena in their last seven trips. Back on Jan. 17 of this year, ASU outscored Cal, 99-90, in double overtime. Ryan Anderson had 32 points and 15 boards for the Bears.

Arizona State Head Coach Herb Sendek
Herb Sendek is 22-29 in his second season at Arizona State. He was previously 63-26 in three years at Miami (Ohio) from 1994-96 and 191-132 over the next 10 years at North Carolina State. Twelve of his teams have advanced to either the NCAA or NIT playoffs.

Probable Starters
Pos  No   Name               Ht   Wt   Yr   Ppg   Rpg
F     4   Jeff Pendergraph   6-9  230  Jr   13.6  6.5
G     3   Ty Abbott          6-3  200  Fr   10.0  3.6
G    12   Derek Glasser      6-1  180  So   5.8   1.9
G    13   James Harden       6-4  218  Fr   18.1  5.0
G    44   Jerren Shipp       6-3  214  So   6.7   3.9

For more information: www.thesundevils.com

Golden Bear Notes

Last Game: 3-Point Barrage Helps Oregon over Cal, 92-70
Oregon made 16-of-20 shots from the floor in the second half and finished the game with a Haas Pavilion-record 18 three-pointers en route to a 92-70 victory over Cal last Saturday. The Ducks jumped out to a quick 11-2 lead before the Bears battled back to go up, 25-21. After leading 34-32 at the break, Oregon made seven straight threes in the first 8:26 of the second half to break the contest open, putting up 58 points in the final 20 minutes. Ryan Anderson and Jerome Randle both scored 17 points for Cal, while DeVon Hardin came off the bench for the second straight game and added 13 points.

Bears Find More Success on Road than at Home
Eleven games into its Pac-10 schedule, Cal is in the unusual position of having more success on the road than inside Haas Pavilion. To date, the Bears are just 2-5 in Berkeley, while they are 3-1 outside of town, including a 69-64 victory at then-No. 9 Washington State. Sophomore F Ryan Anderson has been at his best in road games. In conference action, he has had a 17-point, 17-rebound outing at Oregon State, a 27-point, 9-rebound effort at Washington State and a 33-point, 17-rebound performance at Washington - all Cal wins. In six road games overall, Cal is now 4-2 and has put up some impressive numbers: shooting 47.1 percent from the field and holding opponents to 40.3 percent, including 25.7 percent from three-point range. Anderson six-game averages are 26.5 ppg and 12.3 rpg, which includes a 36-point night at Nevada. He is shooting 54.2 percent from the floor, 54.3 percent from three-point range (19-35) and 94.4 from the free throw line (24-25) on the road.

DeVon Hardin Raising Offensive Efficiency
Over his past five games he has played, starting with the Bears' Jan. 17 meeting with Arizona State, senior C DeVon Hardin has averaged 12.0 ppg while shooting 71.9 percent from the floor (23-32). He had 17 points vs. Stanford Jan. 26 - his highest output since also scoring 17 points vs. Jackson State Dec. 5 - and although he missed Cal's road trip to Washington Jan. 31-Feb. 2 with a viral infection, he came back last weekend to make 9-of-11 from the field against Oregon State and Oregon. Hardin's season field goal rate of 59.2 percent ranks fifth in the Pac-10 and tied for eighth (with Leonard Taylor, 1986-87) all-time at Cal, while his career 52.2 FG percentage is sixth on the school list.

Ryan Anderson: Cal's First 1,000-Point Sophomore
With 22 points vs. Oregon State Feb. 7, F Ryan Anderson became the first sophomore in school history to score 1,000. He is the 36th Cal player ever to attain the 1,000-point level and enters this week's action with 1,021 points. Only two other Bears scored 1,000 points in the first two years with the program, and both of them transferred in. Mark McNamara, who began his career at Santa Clara, had 1,041 points in 1981 and '82, while Ed Gray finished with 1,082 points in 1996 and '97 after entering Cal from the College of Southern Idaho. Anderson's career rate of 18.6 ppg stands as the fifth-best ever at the school, behind only Gray (20.0 ppg), McNamara (19.6 ppg), Russ Critchfield (19.4 ppg, 1966-68) and Lamond Murray (19.2 ppg, 1992-94).

Most Points Freshman-Sophomore Seasons at Cal
Name                          Frosh   Soph   Total
1. Ryan Anderson (2007-08)    539     482    1021
2. Brian Hendrick (1990-91)   478     492    970
3. Leon Powe (2004, 06)       409     553    962

Bears Pouring in the Points
Now averaging 78.5 ppg, Cal ranks second to Oregon in the Pac-10 in offensive production. The Bears have scored at least 90 points four times, including a pair of games over 100, and 80 or more on seven occasions. In fact, Cal's 117-74 win over Jackson State Dec. 5 represented the third-highest single-game total in school history. The Bears also defeated Long Beach State, 102-65, on Dec. 28 in the first round of the Golden Bear Classic, and topped USC, 92-82, in their Pac-10 opener. Cal's current per-game rate is the fifth highest in school history, represents a +9.0 ppg increase over last year, and is the team's best since the 1994-95 squad averaged 79.9 ppg.

Cal's Highest-Scoring Teams
Year         G    Points   Avg
1. 1970-71   25   2098     83.9
2. 1994-95   27   2158     79.9
3. 1992-93   30   2380     79.3
4. 1993-94   30   2358     78.6
5. 2007-08   21   1657     78.5

Anderson Could Be Cal's 7th Pac-10 Scoring Champ since '94
Now contributing 21.9 ppg and owner of four 30-point games this year, sophomore F Ryan Anderson is on his way to becoming the Bears' seventh conference scoring champion in the past 15 years. Anderson set a career best with 36 points at Nevada and later tossed in 32 vs. Arizona State, 30 against Arizona and 33 at Washington. Only two players at Cal have had more 30-point games in one year - Ed Gray had six in 1996-97 and Lamond Murray had five in 1993-94. Anderson enters Thursday's Arizona game having reached double figures in 25 consecutive contests, and he has scored 20 or more points 13 times this year.

Recent Cal Pac-10 Scoring Champions
Lamond Murray         1993-94   24.3 ppg
Shareef Abdur-Rahim   1995-96   21.1 ppg
Ed Gray               1996-97   24.8 ppg
Sean Lampley          2000-01   19.5 ppg
Joe Shipp             2002-03   20.4 ppg
Leon Powe             2005-06   20.5 ppg
Ryan Anderson         2007-08   21.9 ppg*
*leads Pac-10 entering this week's action

Cal Learning to Win the Close Ones
Heading into its road trip to Washington Jan. 31, Cal was 0-4 in games decided by five points or less or in overtime. But over the course of their next three games - all wins - the Bears prevailed in close outcomes each time. Cal upset then-No. 9 Washington State, 69-64, on Jan. 31, taking the lead for good on Ryan Anderson's layup with 42 seconds left. The Bears then defeated Washington, 79-75, Feb. 2 after Patrick Christopher broke a 72-all tie with a three-pointer with 24 seconds on the clock. Cal also topped Oregon State, 81-76, on Feb. 7, keyed by an 8-0 run that began with 2:19 to go and the Bears up by two points. In six of Cal's eight losses this season, the Bears have been within two points, tied or ahead in the final three minutes.

Bears Dishing Out Coach-Pleasing, Pac-10-Leading 16.4 apg
One stat that head coach Ben Braun values highly is assists, which provide a good indication of how well the Bears are playing as a team on the offensive end. In 2007-08, Cal has averaged 16.36 apg, best in the Pac-10 and the Bears' highest rate since the Jason Kidd-led squad of 1993-94 dished out 17.6 apg. No one player is responsible for the rise, as four different Bears are averaging more than two per game - Jerome Randle (4.0 apg, 9th in Pac-10), Nikola Knezevic (2.6 apg), Patrick Christopher (2.5 apg) and Eric Vierneisel (2.1 apg).

Anderson's Game Not Just about Points
Although Ryan Anderson has been piling up the points all season, scoring is not the only area where he excels. The 6-10 forward is pulling down 9.9 rpg, which rates third in the Pac-10. He already has 10 double-doubles and has paced the Bears on the glass in 10 straight games heading into Thursday's Arizona contest. When he grabbed a career-high 17 rebounds at Oregon State Jan. 12 and followed it up with 15 more boards against Arizona State Jan. 17, Anderson became the first Cal player to have at least 15 rebounds in back-to-back contests since Brian Hendrick had 15 at Washington State and 17 vs. ASU on Feb. 1-6, 1992. Anderson later matched his personal best with 17 boards at Washington Feb. 2. In addition, Anderson is second in the Pac-10 in three-point accuracy (46.2%), third in free throw shooting (87.4%) and eighth in three-pointers per game (2.18).

Players Ranked in NCAA Top 25 in Scoring and Rebounding
Michael Beasley, Kansas State - 25.2 ppg (4th), 12.3 rpg (1st)
Arizona Reid, High Point - 23.0 ppg (9th), 11.2 rpg (5th)
Tyler Hansbrough, North Carolina - 22.8 ppg (10th), 10.8 rpg (9th)
Ryan Anderson, California - 21.9 ppg (12th), 9.9 rpg (21st)

Year of the Sophomore for Golden Bears
In many circles around the country, the 2007-08 season has been deemed the Year of the Freshman for the number of quality newcomers on college rosters. But at Cal, the campaign can easily be called the Year of the Sophomore. The Bears' second-year players are combining to average 59.7 ppg, or 76.0 percent of Cal's total. The team's top three scorers are all sophomores, led by Ryan Anderson's 21.9 ppg. He is followed by Patrick Christopher with 15.9 ppg and Jerome Randle with 11.8 ppg. Each player has already set a career high, as well. Anderson poured in 36 points at Nevada, Christopher had 26 vs. Jackson State, and Randle came through with 26 points against North Dakota State.

Cal Production by Class
              Points (Avg.)   Rebounds (Avg.)   Assists (Avg.)
Senior        303 (13.8)      201 (9.1)         58 (2.6)
Junior        0 (0.0)         0 (0.0)           0 (0.0)
Sophomore     1313 (59.7)     482 (21.9)        278 (12.6)
Freshman      111 (5.0)       58 (2.6)          24 (1.1)

Cal Shooting Well from Free Throw Line Again
After setting a school record by making 76.9 percent of its free throw attempts last year, Cal is challenging the mark this season by raising its rate to 77.1 percent, which ranks first in the Pac-10 and sixth in the country. The Bears were perfect from the stripe at Washington State (6-6) and have been over 80 percent 10 times, including last week vs. Oregon when they shot 21-for-23 (91.3%). Over the past seven games, Cal is 111-for-134 (82.8%). Individually, Jerome Randle is second in the Pac-10 at 88.2 percent, while Ryan Anderson is third (87.4%) and Patrick Christopher ninth (77.9%). But perhaps even more importantly, the Bears, who rated third in the NCAA last year, are getting to the line with much more frequency - 15.8 trips per game in 2006-07 compared to 20.6 this season.

Top Free Throw Rates in School History
Year         FT-FTA    Pct
1. 2007-08   350-454   .771
2. 2006-07   400-520   .769
3. 1986-87   513-698   .735
4. 2005-06   525-716   .733

Bears Find 3-Point Stroke in Outburst vs. Long Beach State
Through the first nine games of the season, Cal managed to make just 32.7 percent of its three-point tries (55-168) and averaged only 6.1 treys per game. But something must have clicked for the Bears in their 102-65 win over Long Beach State Dec. 28. Cal drained a school-record 16 shots from behind the arc vs. the 49ers and has enjoyed increased long-range accuracy ever since, going 102-for-249 (41.0%) and sinking 7.8 per game over the past 13 contests. Ten different players have connected from three-point land, with the primary contributors being Ryan Anderson (49-104, 46.2%), Patrick Christopher (34-93, 36.6%) and Jerome Randle (33-80, 41.3%). Cal's overall three-point rate of 37.6 percent is just behind the record 38.7 percent set in 1989-90.

Best 3-Point Percentages at Cal     Most 3-Pointers per Game at Cal
Year         3FG-A     Pct          Year         G    3FG   Per Game
1. 1989-90   196-507   38.7%        1. 2006-07   33   249   7.55
2. 2007-08   157-417   37.6%        2. 2007-08   22   157   7.14
3. 1987-88   133-355   37.5%        3. 1994-95   27   189   7.00
4. 2005-06   169-452   37.4%        4. 2002-03   31   198   6.39
5. 2002-03   198-530   37.4%        5. 1989-90   32   196   6.13

Anderson Reaps Pac-10, National Honors for WSU, UW Effort
Sophomore F Ryan Anderson, who averaged 30.0 ppg and 13.0 rpg in wins at Washington State and Washington Jan. 31-Feb.2, was named the Pac-10 Player of the Week, as well as the ESPN.com, The Sporting News and FoxSports.com National Player of the Week. Dick Vitale also selected him Co-Player of the Week. Anderson made 20-of-32 shots from the floor (62.5%), 9-of-14 from three-point range (64.3%) and all 11 of his free throw tries. He had 27 points and nine rebounds at WSU, including the go-ahead layup with 42 seconds left, and 33 points and a career-high-tying 17 boards at UW.

Boykin Gives Bears a Boost
A mid-year transfer from Duke last season, sophomore F Jamal Boykin has given the Bears a lift since becoming eligible Dec. 22. During his 14 games on the active roster, he has contributed 8.2 ppg and 4.6 rpg, shooting 50.5 percent from the floor and 86.7 percent from the free throw line. Boykin reached double figures during a three-game stretch vs. Arizona (10 points), Stanford (14) and Washington State (12), and he had 13 points, eight rebounds and four assists vs. Oregon State last week. His most productive game, perhaps, came back on Dec. 28 when he finished with 18 points and 10 rebounds vs. Long Beach State.

Cal Posting Highest Rebound Margin since 1993
With a +3.2 rebound margin this season, Cal has its highest differential since the 1992-93 squad owned a +4.6 per game advantage on the boards. The Bears have posted double-digit advantages seven times, most recently vs. Oregon State Feb. 7 when they held a 44-32 edge. The largest margin came against Missouri Dec. 1 when Cal won the board battle, 41-20. Individually, Ryan Anderson ranks third in the Pac-10 with 9.9 per game, while DeVon Hardin is seventh in the league with 7.7 rpg. Hardin opened the year with three straight games of 14, followed by a 16-rebound effort at Nevada, to become the first Bear to grab 14 or more in four consecutive contests since Darrall Imhoff in 1959-60.

Cal's Top Rebounding Margins Last 20 Years
Year      Cal Reb   Opp Reb   Margin
1992-93   37.9      33.3      +4.6
2007-08   36.0      32.8      +3.2
1988-89   33.2      30.6      +2.6
1996-97   38.0      35.5      +2.5

Patrick Christopher One of Most Improved In Pac-10
After averaging 5.2 ppg and reaching double figures just four times as a freshman last year, G Patrick Christopher has shown off a new-found scoring ability this season, reaching double digits in 18 games, including 16 games of 15 or more. Now tossing in 15.9 ppg, he is scoring 10.7 ppg more than he did last year. Christopher tied his high from his freshman campaign with 24 points against Nicholls State Nov. 19, then set a personal best with 26 points vs. Jackson State Dec. 5. Christopher also paced the Bears vs. Southern Miss (19 points) in the opener, had a team-high 18 points against Missouri Dec. 1 and poured in 24 points vs. USC Jan. 3. In Cal's 79-75 win at Washington, he had 20 points, including the go-ahead three-pointer with 27 seconds left that broke a 72-all tie. In addition, he is grabbing 3.6 rpg, has dished out 54 assists (2.5 apg) and shooting 77.9 percent from the free throw line (9th in the Pac-10).

Harper Kamp Returning Home to Arizona This Weekend
Freshman F Harper Kamp, a product of Mountain View HS in Mesa, Ariz., who has been one of Cal's most valuable reserves, is making his first visit home as a collegiate player this week. As a prep, Kamp earned state MVP honors his sophomore season, leading his team to three state championships. Last year, he scored 21 points and grabbed seven rebounds in the final vs. St. Mary's HS. Kamp averages 5.0 ppg and 2.5 rpg for the Bears, posting a personal best of 16 points vs. Jackson State Dec. 5.

Bears Get Big Win in the Palouse
Cal's 69-64 win against then-No. 9 Washington State Jan. 31 represented the Bears' first over a Top 10 team in a true road game since topping then-No. 9 Arizona, 74-72, on Feb. 12, 1995, in Tucson. Cal did beat then-No. 4 UCLA, 76-69, in overtime in last year's Pac-10 Tournament quarterfinals in Los Angeles, but the game was played in a neutral site at the Staples Center.


Cal Bears Men's Basketball


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