The California Golden Bears have won four games in a row (including against fellow Pac-12 bubble team Colorado), and they’re starting to find themselves on the right side of the bubble.
Bracket Matrix places Cal as an 11 seed as one of their last few teams in, along with Miami, TCU, Seton Hall (who Cal narrowly lost to in Pearl Harbor) and Illinois State.
One thing to note: ESPN’s Joe Lunardi currently places Cal on the outside of the bubble. But Cal is not that far off either. Lunardi has Cal as the first team out on his first four out.
Cal has two more regular season games against sure tournament teams: at Arizona this Saturday night, and home to Oregon on Wednesday February 22. They will also play Utah on the road the final week of the regular season. If Cal cannot beat any of those three teams, none of the other teams on Cal’s schedule are anywhere close to sniffing the tournament, so the Bears have to pretty much sweep that slate or lose one game (at most).
Cal is currently ranked 41st in RPI. They’re 0-4 against the RPI top 25 (Oregon, UCLA, Arizona, Virginia, but USC is coming close to breaking that plateau at 26), 1-5 against the RPI top 50 (Seton Hall loss, USC win), and 4-6 against the top 100 (wins over Utah, Stanford, Princeton, loss to San Diego State).