Men's Basketball - What'd you see last week and what do you want to see this week?

Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

So we've got to ask you two questions: 1. What encouraged and discouraged you the most about Cal's performance against Stanford? 2. What are you looking for from Cal this week against Utah and Colorado?

BlueandGold15: I was really encouraged by the strong play from Solomon and Kravish in the first half, which kept us afloat for a while - [aside: as someone who doesn't watch a great amount of Cal basketball, Solomon's defense on the inside has been a pleasant surprise for me every time I've seen him]. I also liked that Justin Cobbs showed some signs of finally finding his shot in Pac-12 play, shaking off a rough first half to hit some shots as part of a small rally later in the game. Cal also defended extremely well in the paint, making very little easy for the Cardinal as part of a 36% shooting night for the Palo Alto boys. But those might've been the only highlights, considering the 10 point defeat, that the Wallace/Crabbe/Cobbs triumvirate went a combined 12-39, and some horrendous refereeing that resulted in a 31-15 free throw disparity for Furd. Allan Crabbe was also a nonfactor for too much of the game, and perhaps a bit too reckless at the end of the second, charging to the rim a couple of possessions in a row to no avail. Still, whenever you hold an opponent to those kinds of shooting numbers, you should win. Just an ugly, ugly game that slipped away from us.How many times have you heard that one this season?

Unclesam22: (I saw the last couple of minutes of the first half and then the last 10 minutes of the second half...plus I know nothing about basketball so take what I say as you will.) From what I saw there wasn't much to be encouraged about. Cal played uninspiring basketball and much like some of the issues that plagued the football team last season, I am at a loss to really explain why. Rebounding seemed to be an issue, especially when giving up second chance points. It also seemed like there were some sequences where Cal was just plain sloppy with the ball, not executing good passes or turning it over on the dribble. And what really discouraged me was Allen Crabbe's lack of dominance in the game. I've only seen parts of 3 Cal games now, but in each one of them he's taken a really long time to get going and even once he does, he seems to settle for a lot of jump shots instead of pressing towards the basket. Again, I'm not a basketball person so I'm not sure if this is because the D is keying in on him or what, but from what someone that is a known scorer, I just expected more dominance. So that definitely disappointed me.

LEastCoastBears: What is encouraging from the Stanfurd game is that Cal certainly has the skills to win the game. It was not pure luck that Richard Solomon and David Kravish were getting easy looks and displaying and converting on a variety of post moves in basically the first quarter (first 10 minutes of the first half) of the game. Justin Cobbs also finally started to make some shots in the second half, for the first time in awhile. Sure, the shots that Cobbs took and made were more difficult but Cobbs has shown the ability to make these in the past as well.

What is discouraging is how we just cannot keep this going for the entire game. For the n-th time this season, the team would hit a skit where shots, no matter how easy, would stop falling in. While I have been happy about the bigger role and the contribution from the bench, given the very low expectation of them coming in to the season, what we sorely miss is a bench scoring option that can come in and jump start the offense. I may be wrong about this, but I think we were outscore 15 to 0 in terms of bench contribution at the half (Bak had a lay up blocked by the rim and I am not sure another bench guy even took a shot).

What is also very disappointing is our defense's propensity to give too good of a look from the 3 point line to our opponent. While this was possibly a good strategy coming in to this game with how Furd supposedly can't make any 3's, we weren't really able to deny/contest these looks even when we tried.

Finally, I'm not sure if Allen Crabbe got rattled by the crowd after airballing and badly missing his first few shots, but we really need him to step up more during another scoring drought. While I'm not expecting an NBA type of thing where we just run isolation plays for him, I would like to see Crabbe draw more fouls and get to the line, especially when the shots are not falling in for the entire team.

Cal men's basketball falls short against Stanford, 69-59 (via thedailycal)


Vincent S: I was stuck at Denver International, and thus wasn't able to catch the game. From what I heard though (and for the third year in a row), our men played tight - they pressed and missed early shots. Thus, they started forcing more plays, which played right into Stanford's hands. I hope we do better at home.

BlueandGold15: It would be nice if we could get Kreklow or Smith back soon. This whole give extended minutes to Bak and Powers thing is not working.

Unclesam22: I guess I'd like to see Cal show some heart and hustle. I think the team is really missing the Jorge/Harper factor this year, as there (from my limited viewings) doesn't seem to be a real emotional force within the team. So I'd like to see a complete effort for two straight games and two much needed conference wins.

LEastCoastBears: Simply put, the Bears need some wins. While Utah should be beatable, nothing is given for this year's team. Colorado has a 3-1 record against the Bears in the last two years, going 2-0 in Colorado. They also almost beat Arizona in that controversial game. Despite 2-4 conference record, they have a very good RPI. The Colorado game is the type of game that the Bears need to win to keep whatever small hope of another NCAA berth alive.
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