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Golden Nuggets: Could the Pac-12 Expand its Basketball Conference Schedule?

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Don Coleman is back, and Tyrone Wallace is getting national attention.

California v USC Photo by Cassy Athena/Getty Images

Basketball

  • There are talks (nothing “concrete”) about expanding conference play in basketball from 18 to 20 games. Now, in case you can’t do math like me, that still does not make it a true round-robin (There would need to be 22 for that) but it would beef up the regular season scheduling, as it would result in two less “cupcake” conference games. If it happens, it wouldn’t take place for another two years, but other conferences are already moving up to 20. Jon Wilner makes the case for 20.

Beyond the travel, there’s another downside to expanding the conference schedule: More losses.

Adding two games for each team guarantees 12 losses for the conference. That’s not necessarily 12 more than the current format brings, because some non-conference games result in defeat. But it could be eight or nine more in total, and for certain coaches in certain seasons, it could mean two more losses.

The benefits, however, far outweigh the negatives.

Adding the weekend of conference play in December would significantly increase the visibility of Pac-12 basketball throughout the conference footprint during a time usually reserved for wondering why there are so many bowl games.

Head coach Wyking Jones said Wednesday that the junior guard, who is averaging a team-leading 16.9 points per game, will play against Oregon on Thursday. He hasn’t decided whether Coleman will be in the starting lineup.

“He’s been engaged, and he’s working hard,” Jones said of Coleman’s demeanor in his return to practice. “Hopefully, that will carry over into the game.”

NBA

After spending most of the season playing in the NBA G League, Rabb may have finally established himself as a cog in the Memphis Grizzlies’ long-term future, recording his first start in the NBA. In 17 minutes, Rabb dropped in 8 points on 4 of 5 shooting while inhaling six rebounds.

Rabb’s first appearance in Memphis’ starting lineup was a major part of what has been a very impressive stretch of basketball.

Over Rabb’s last four games, he’s averaging 8.5 points, 4.8 rebounds and 1.5 assists per game in less than 18 minutes per game.

In these four games especially, Rabb flashed some of the tools which may give him some staying power in the league.

  • This VICE Sports NBA article has a bunch of nuggets, but if you scroll down to item No. 4 (CTRL+F “4. Tyrone”) there is a piece on Tyrone Wallace. Includes animated GIFs!

Misc.

  • FB: Find out why Chris Fatilua picked Cal in his interview with Brandon Huffman.

“I picked Cal because I could really see myself there and I know Coach Wilcox and the rest of his staff are really doing something special over there,” said Fatilua. “That’s really something I want to be a part of.”

Staying in-state was something that was a bonus for Fatilua and being relatively close to his family was as well.

”I didn’t want distance to become a huge factor in my decision but staying in California isn’t a bad deal at all,” said Fatilua. “My family was very proud and happy for me.”

Fatilua said he’s completely done with his recruitment and looks forward to signing with the Bears next week before enrolling in summer.

  • LAX: Learn about Kelly McCarthy’s journey from Cal Lacrosse goalie to a well established ABC News Producer and Reporter.
  • WDIVE: Congrats Briana Thai on being named Pac-12 Diver of the Week!
  • MCREW: Head coach Mike Teti will leave Cal after this upcoming season to lead the USMNT. But the USMNT will soon be co-tenants with the Bears as they open a training center in Oakland’s T. Gary Rogers Rowing Center, where the Bears also train.

Beat the Ducks and Beavers! (Don’t forget that the women’s basketball team is also playing the same schools this weekend as well.)