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Mike Montgomery retiring as Cal basketball head coach

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It is done.

Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

According to sources close to Mike Montgomery, the Cal basketball head coach will be stepping stepped down this afternoon in his meeting with Sandy Barbour.

"I have enjoyed 45 years coaching the game I love while developing long-lasting friendships along the way. This is a decision that was not made lightly," Montgomery said in a statement, "This is the right time for me to move to the next phase of my life."

The most successful Bay Area men's basketball coach of the past half century, Montgomery compiled a record of 130-73 at Cal. In 2010, he brought the school its first regular-season Pac-12 Conference championship in 50 years.

"The six years I have spent at Cal have been some of the greatest in my career," he said, thanking athletic director Sandy Barbour for her support. "This is a great program and Cal basketball is positioned for success for many years to come."

Montgomery, 67, has had struggles personally (with bladder cancer) and on the court as well (a disappointing NIT berth this season when an NCAA bid was in reach). Montgomery would have had two years remaining on his contract.

But he's still the most successful coach for Cal basketball in the modern era. He captured Cal's first Pac-10 championship (without ties!) in a revenue sport in 50 years. In his six seasons at Cal, Montgomery took the Bears to the NCAA tournament four times, winning two games and advancing to the Round of 32 twice. He guided the Bears to top four finishes in the conference each season, and came within a win the past two seasons of two more conference titles.

He will be missed greatly, and his successor will have big shoes to fill.

UPDATE:

UPDATE 2: