Cal has lost Ricky Kreklow for the second straight year to an extended injury that will keep him out for at least the first month of Pac-12 play. Cal's best perimeter defender injured his right hand in practice and is out 4-6 weeks. Cal does have experience playing without Kreklow, but they could see another significant drop-off in defensive efficiency if they don't have Kreklow around to take on the best Pac-12 backcourt threats.
The tougher situation involves Jabari Bird, who Mike Montgomery confirmed could be "out for awhile". It remains to be seen how long "awhile" is, but I'd guess he'd miss a few games or so.
.@CalMensBBall Mike Montgomery on Jabari Bird "sprained ankle...he'll be out for awhile." - more on @Pac12Networks Playbook tomorrow night— Michael Yam (@Mike_Yam) December 23, 2013
This really puts Cal in a bind athletically. Without Bird, Cal really only has Roger Moute a Bidias left to play small forward, and he's not ready for starter minutes. Most likely Jordan Matthews will have to start at the two, Tyrone Wallace will start at the three, and Sam Singer and Moute will get extended backup playing time. That is pretty much the only nice thing about this situation--both Singer and Moute will get the chance to develop a little more quickly with playing time because they have no choice (The flip side is that they might not be ready at all).
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