Golden Nuggets: Final Exams for Men's Basketball

Last week you guys did a great job in boosting the number of votes in royrules22's incredibly easy-to-use top-25 poll.  Keep up the good work and vote again in this week's poll.

Farudo looks at the next four games in men's basketball's schedule, possibly the toughest stretch of the entire season, especially when you factor injuries into things.  Should Cal win all four, Farudo anticipates a parade down Telegraph Ave.  Realistically, he expects two or three wins.

   – at New Mexico, Wednesday: The Lobos are 6-0 and are extremely difficult to beat at The Pit in Albuquerque. They’ve won their four home games this season by an average margin of 20.3 ppg and were 16-2 on their own floor a year ago.

   — vs. Iowa State, Saturday: The Big 12/Pac-10 Hardwood Series matchup in Berkeley against the Cyclones features 6-foot-10 forward Craig Brackins, projected as the No. 15 pick in the 2010 draft by NBAdraft.net. Iowa State is 6-1.

   – at Pacific, Wednesday, Dec. 9: The game is being billed by UOP as the "Stockton Showcase" and will be played at the city’s new downtown Stockton Arena, which seats 10,500. The Tigers are 4-1, and will be motivated to score just their third win over Cal in a series that dates back to the 1908-09 season.

   – At Kansas, Tuesday, Dec. 22: The Jayhawks are 5-0 and ranked No. 1 in the nation. The feature All-Americans Cole Aldrich and Sherron Collins, along with Xavier Henry, a 6-foot-6 freshman guard who is outscoring both of them.

Do the math: the Bears’ next four opponents are a combined 21-2, and Cal must play three of them on the road. The roster’s health status will be a critical factor.

After the jump we have last night's practice report, an update on Best, a look at how Justin Forsett and Frank Cignetti are doing, some interesting movement in the men's basketball top-25 polls and more.

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