With Paris Austin out injured for today’s contest, Cal would need to play extremely well you make up for his lost production. In addition to losing him for the game, Coach Jones shook up the starting lineup, bringing Darius McNeill off the bench and giving Jacobi Gordon his first start. The Bears were after it on defense to begin the game, though some of the younger players struggled to produced as they normally would. On both sides of the floor, the Bears played well, lead by McNeill with 16 points off the bench. Though his role changed, his play didn’t, and he was the spark for the Bears the entire game. Though they played well, they did not have a solution for stopping UCLA’s David Singleton, who led the Bruins in scoring with 14 points in the first half. The Bears would go into halftime down eight in a game that was very winnable.
In the second half, we saw typical Cal basketball. In moments where it seemed like they could come back and take control of the game again, they failed to capitalize. The Bears were inconsistently defending well, though on offense, production from others players increased. An issue in the second half was three point shooting, as the Bears went 1-11 behind the three point line. In the end, Cal would lose, but four players would score in double figures, McNiell leading with 23 points.