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NEW ORLEANS BOUND! Bears Beat Bulldogs In Overtime

The Bears were down by 10 points with 6:45 left. Didn't matter. Can we even be surprised at this point?


As you might already know, I'm flying blind here. I saw about 30 seconds of game time - the final 30 seconds, in which the Bears did just enough to hold off Georgia. I've watched the highlights, I've read the game threads, I've looked at the comments and glanced at tweets.

So really, any of you who actually saw the game could write a better recap. I'll get the chance to see it later and offer whatever insights I can. But what I will say right now is this: What is incredible about this team is not that they win, it's how they win.

And what I mean by that is that this is one of the most versatile teams I can remember. They win games with offense, they win games with defense, they win games with rebounding, they win games fast and they win games slow. They don't typically do all of those things at the same time, but no matter the game there's always something for the Bears to hang their hat on, something to help them pull out the win when something isn't working.

Against Georgia, based on what little I've seen, they won with pure desire, effort, and grit. The game was played at Georgia's pace. The Bears couldn't hit shots. Free throws weren't falling. I doubt it was Lindsay Gottlieb's idealized version of Cal Basketball. But special teams rise above it. This team has done so all year long.

I don't know what the ultimate legacy of this team will be. But that should be a part of it. One thing I can guarantee is that for the rest of their lives, they will carry an obvious legacy: a spot in the Final Four. When Cal won a share of the Pac-12 title, Charmin Smith rightly pointed out that it was an achievement that could never be taken away. The Bears have added something even better to the mix.

I'm happy for everybody associated with the team, but as is often the case, it's the seniors who really made it happen. Layshia Clarendon scored 25 points on 18 shots. Talia Caldwell did plenty of the big things and all of the little things. And they carried Cal to New Orleans.

Tomorrow we'll find out if the Bears will face upstart Louisville or perennial power Tennessee. Right now it's time to celebrate, to revel, to fete, rejoice and live it up. We get to think about Cal basketball for another week, eagerly anticipate another game, to watch the Bears take another road trip. This is what you dream of as a fan, and we get to keep living the dream.

We'll have plenty more thoughts on this game and the first Final Four in modern Cal history. For now?