- No transcripts, but this recap has some of the quotes.
“Thank you all for being here, I’m really proud of our team,” Cal head coach Lindsay Gottlieb said after the game. “I’m proud of how they handled this week of preparation. I’m proud of how they handled the media and craziness and questions that come with playing UConn. I’m proud of how we performed on the court. We wanted to win the game. It’s not a moral victory type of thing saying we kept it close. I’m more proud of what I saw and how good our team can be.
“I think we made UConn have to beat us. They had to beat us. [Katie] Lou’s really good. She had to make plays. They needed contributions from all five starters. They don’t get those contributions from Williams and Walker, they don’t win. I love the fight of our team, the ability to comeback when we were down. To play inside outside basketball in front of a huge crowd that these young women deserve. I think we just only raise our expectations from here of what we want the rest of the season to be.
Kristine Anigwe showed a lot of emotion after the game. When asked how she felt about the game, she admitted her feelings were mixed. She isn’t out to get moral victories. She’s out to win.
“I’m like indifferent,” Anigwe admitted. “I feel like I really wanted to win this game. Again, I’m happy it’s not March because that would be disappointing. But I’m really proud of my teammates, I’m proud of Asha stepping up and playing really really well. I think she was 6-13, it’s incredible. I’m really proud of her. Receé for starting us off with those threes. We wouldn’t have been close if we didn’t make the plays that we needed to make and I think that we’re just a different team than we’ve ever been. I feel like we’re going to do damage in Pac-12 really well and March and it’s disappointing to again lose. Because I really really believed that we were going to win this game.”
- Here’s two recaps from Friday night’s event featuring UConn Coach Auriemma and Warriors Coach Kerr.
- SF Chronicle:
“I don’t think that a player has a responsibility to speak (about political issues), but I think that he or she has a right to speak,” said Kerr, whose players have joined him in using their platform to speak on a number of social issues. “… When there’s a time when it feels like they’re needed, athletes are going to show up, like they are now, and make their voices heard. I think it’s important.”
Auriemma said he encourages his players to do that same, though it’s different when dealing with college athletes, who might not yet have the life experience and perspective. “Today, kids just want to make statements, but they don’t want to put their life on the line,” he said.
The crowd of about 170 — including chancellor Carol Christ — at Memorial Stadium’s eighth-floor University Club was thoroughly entertained during the one-hour conversation involving two coaches with 19 major championships between them.
Kerr, the owner of eight NBA titles as a player and coach, including three in his first four seasons as Warriors coach, and Auriemma, whose UConn women have claimed 11 NCAA crowns, were serious and fun. They found common ground on the trials of handling rare but painful failures against a backdrop of winning.
Kerr said he will remember “for the rest of my life,” Golden State’s crushing Game 7 loss to the Cavaliers in the 2016 NBA Finals.
- Some final notes as Cal finished up their last practice before their bowl game. Notably, Vic Wharton III will join seniors across the country in skipping the bowl game (although Wilcox’s answer suggests it could be a different reason than the NFL draft). Kanawai Noa is practicing but Wilcox would not commit to him playing in the bowl.
- The radio post-game show host, Lee Grosscup, will retire after the Cheez-It Bowl. His 32 year career with Cal will be coming to an end. Best of luck!
- Jim Knowlton’s final Notes of the year is a video recapping the great semester Cal sports has had, especially in FB and WBB.
- Mike and Sandy Westall recently donated a six-figure sum to Cal Athletics, mainly the tennis teams. Find out about their extensive background including how they met at Cal and why they love Cal Tennis.