GO BEARS!
EIGHT BEARS RECEIVE ALL-AMERICA HONORS
Boulder, Colo. – Four Golden Bears were named first-team All-Americans, with graduated captain Seamus Kelly getting the nod for 7s and 15s, and four others earned honorable mentions when USA Rugby released its list of the top players in the collegiate ranks for 2013-14 on Friday.
Kelly was joined by California’s Alec Gletzer, Tiaan De Nysschen and Josh Tucker on the first team of All-Americans, while James Kondrat and Jake Anderson earned honorable mention for 15s, and Paul Bosco and Brad Harrington received honorable mention for 7s.
“Our University is proud of these young men and their selections,” said head coach Jack Clark. “This is notable recognition for truly outstanding seasons. Most importantly, these students are equally impressive off the field as they are on. Again, we are all really proud of them.”
Cal’s newest member of its full All-America ranks is De Nysschen, bringing to 127 the all-time number of Rugby Bears named in the 15-a-side game, with a growing body of 7s All-Americans in the nascent Olympic code.
De Nysschen received the recognition for the first time to cap off his Bears career, which ended with an injury in the Varsity Cup National Championship final against BYU, while teammate Tucker also got the nod for a body of work that was ample enough to warrant his second selection although his final spring campaign ended in April also due to injury.
Gletzer was named an All-American for the third time in his collegiate career after a stalwart spring was followed by a successful selection with the Bears’ championship 7s run at the CRC, while Kelly made it a clean sweep of consecutive All-America selections in his Cal career, which he ended with an unprecedented third year as captain of the Blue and Gold while managing to play for the U.S. National Team as it qualified for the 2015 Rugby World Cup.
Anderson battled through an injury throughout the second half of the season and made vital contributions to Cal’s second straight CRC 7s title, while Bosco and Harrington had strong returns to the lineup after missing significant time away from the pitch the year before. Kondrat was recognized for his impact after becoming a starter in the second row as a sophomore.

EIGHT BEARS RECEIVE ALL-AMERICA HONORS

Boulder, Colo. – Four Golden Bears were named first-team All-Americans, with graduated captain Seamus Kelly getting the nod for 7s and 15s, and four others earned honorable mentions when USA Rugby released its list of the top players in the collegiate ranks for 2013-14 on Friday.

Kelly was joined by California’s Alec GletzerTiaan De Nysschen and Josh Tucker on the first team of All-Americans, while James Kondrat and Jake Anderson earned honorable mention for 15s, and Paul Bosco and Brad Harrington received honorable mention for 7s.

“Our University is proud of these young men and their selections,” said head coach Jack Clark. “This is notable recognition for truly outstanding seasons. Most importantly, these students are equally impressive off the field as they are on. Again, we are all really proud of them.”

Cal’s newest member of its full All-America ranks is De Nysschen, bringing to 127 the all-time number of Rugby Bears named in the 15-a-side game, with a growing body of 7s All-Americans in the nascent Olympic code.

De Nysschen received the recognition for the first time to cap off his Bears career, which ended with an injury in the Varsity Cup National Championship final against BYU, while teammate Tucker also got the nod for a body of work that was ample enough to warrant his second selection although his final spring campaign ended in April also due to injury.

Gletzer was named an All-American for the third time in his collegiate career after a stalwart spring was followed by a successful selection with the Bears’ championship 7s run at the CRC, while Kelly made it a clean sweep of consecutive All-America selections in his Cal career, which he ended with an unprecedented third year as captain of the Blue and Gold while managing to play for the U.S. National Team as it qualified for the 2015 Rugby World Cup.

Anderson battled through an injury throughout the second half of the season and made vital contributions to Cal’s second straight CRC 7s title, while Bosco and Harrington had strong returns to the lineup after missing significant time away from the pitch the year before. Kondrat was recognized for his impact after becoming a starter in the second row as a sophomore.

Cal Wins Second Straight Rugby Championship
Philadelphia – California culminated its second straight undefeated run through the Collegiate Rugby Championship with a 24-21 victory over Kutztown University to become back-to-back 7s national champion Sunday at PPL Park.
The U.C. Berkeley Golden Bears overcame a 7-0 deficit early in the first half with three unanswered tries, adding a fourth try during the responding run from the Golden Bears from Pennsylvania, and held on to preserve their victory as the final whistle signaled the program’s second consecutive national championship in the Olympic code of the game.
Cal exited the tournament with the most tries scored (31) and best points differential (+127) in the 20-team field, and sealed its title with the type of hard-nosed play that pundits expected from the opposition and a national TV audience witnessed from both teams. Captain Seamus Kelly was lifted aloft on the shoulders of his teammates after leading his team to the title in his final match for the Rugby Bears, and the graduated senior left the pitch for the final time having contributed a team-high six tries to the team’s three-day, six-match effort.
“It’s really special to win this championship alongside the guys and the coaches, and it’s definitely something I’ll take with me forever,” said Kelly.
Against a bruising Kutztown team that had made its own unbeaten run to the final and dispatched last year’s runner-up along the way, Cal combined a confident attack with stingy defense to accentuate its skills while meeting the strengths of the opposition head on.
Brad Harrington, the only other graduating senior on Cal’s CRC squad, typified the team’s grit by absorbing some serious contact throughout the tournament and bouncing back to make a difference in every match he played.
“It was about playing with these guys one last time and finishing on a high note,” Harrington said. “I have to thank the trainers and doctors for keeping me healthy so I could be in these last few games and play for a championship. It’s been incredible, the bond we’ve built.”
Cal started its championship Sunday with a 33-5 quarterfinal win over Penn State that saw the Bears fall behind early on a Ross Morris try before the Blue and Gold exploded for five unanswered tries.
The semifinals saw Pac-12 peers Cal and UCLA square off for seventh time in their 7s history and second straight time in the CRC semis. Sunday’s chapter in this great rivalry was a squeaker that the Bears could claim only after coming back to win 20-17 on a last-minute try by Andrew Battaglia, who ended the tournament with five tries scored and a full account of chase-downs and tackles.
Taking the field against Kutztown in the final, Cal made it plain its intent to meet Kutztown’s might with ample power of its own, poaching its opening kickoff and driving the Pa. Bears into touch when they wrenched back possession. They lead 12-7 at the break.
In the second half, Kutztown laid down its challenge by stealing its kickoff out of the air before Gletzer poached the ball back. The two teams traded penalties before Harrington darted through a gap at minute 9 and Webb converted (2-for-4) for a 19-7 Cal lead.
“We played to our strengths pretty well and we neutralized a lot of theirs,” Kelly explained postgame. “I thought we were very good at the breakdown and were very physical in defense. We knew that was the hallmark of their game, and we came with a physicality and an intensity that matched them. When you neutralize their best threats and you accentuate your own abilities, you’re going to do well, and I think we did that.”
Kelly will depart immediately for Houston to join the U.S. National Team in its preparations for a match against Scotland on June 7, when head coach Jack Clark will also be inducted into the U.S. Rugby Hall of Fame after winning his 24th overall national championship, the 28th in the history of the program.

Cal Wins Second Straight Rugby Championship

Philadelphia – California culminated its second straight undefeated run through the Collegiate Rugby Championship with a 24-21 victory over Kutztown University to become back-to-back 7s national champion Sunday at PPL Park.

The U.C. Berkeley Golden Bears overcame a 7-0 deficit early in the first half with three unanswered tries, adding a fourth try during the responding run from the Golden Bears from Pennsylvania, and held on to preserve their victory as the final whistle signaled the program’s second consecutive national championship in the Olympic code of the game.

Cal exited the tournament with the most tries scored (31) and best points differential (+127) in the 20-team field, and sealed its title with the type of hard-nosed play that pundits expected from the opposition and a national TV audience witnessed from both teams. Captain Seamus Kelly was lifted aloft on the shoulders of his teammates after leading his team to the title in his final match for the Rugby Bears, and the graduated senior left the pitch for the final time having contributed a team-high six tries to the team’s three-day, six-match effort.

“It’s really special to win this championship alongside the guys and the coaches, and it’s definitely something I’ll take with me forever,” said Kelly.

Against a bruising Kutztown team that had made its own unbeaten run to the final and dispatched last year’s runner-up along the way, Cal combined a confident attack with stingy defense to accentuate its skills while meeting the strengths of the opposition head on.

Brad Harrington, the only other graduating senior on Cal’s CRC squad, typified the team’s grit by absorbing some serious contact throughout the tournament and bouncing back to make a difference in every match he played.

“It was about playing with these guys one last time and finishing on a high note,” Harrington said. “I have to thank the trainers and doctors for keeping me healthy so I could be in these last few games and play for a championship. It’s been incredible, the bond we’ve built.”

Cal started its championship Sunday with a 33-5 quarterfinal win over Penn State that saw the Bears fall behind early on a Ross Morris try before the Blue and Gold exploded for five unanswered tries.

The semifinals saw Pac-12 peers Cal and UCLA square off for seventh time in their 7s history and second straight time in the CRC semis. Sunday’s chapter in this great rivalry was a squeaker that the Bears could claim only after coming back to win 20-17 on a last-minute try by Andrew Battaglia, who ended the tournament with five tries scored and a full account of chase-downs and tackles.

Taking the field against Kutztown in the final, Cal made it plain its intent to meet Kutztown’s might with ample power of its own, poaching its opening kickoff and driving the Pa. Bears into touch when they wrenched back possession. They lead 12-7 at the break.

In the second half, Kutztown laid down its challenge by stealing its kickoff out of the air before Gletzer poached the ball back. The two teams traded penalties before Harrington darted through a gap at minute 9 and Webb converted (2-for-4) for a 19-7 Cal lead.

“We played to our strengths pretty well and we neutralized a lot of theirs,” Kelly explained postgame. “I thought we were very good at the breakdown and were very physical in defense. We knew that was the hallmark of their game, and we came with a physicality and an intensity that matched them. When you neutralize their best threats and you accentuate your own abilities, you’re going to do well, and I think we did that.”

Kelly will depart immediately for Houston to join the U.S. National Team in its preparations for a match against Scotland on June 7, when head coach Jack Clark will also be inducted into the U.S. Rugby Hall of Fame after winning his 24th overall national championship, the 28th in the history of the program.

nataliecoughlin:

Cal Hall of Fame, Class of 2014! 

Natalie Coughlin (women’s swimming, 2001-04) – A three-time Olympian and winner of 12 medals – a total unsurpassed by any woman in U.S. Olympic history – Coughlin remains one of the premier swimmers in the world 10 years after her graduation from Cal. As a Golden Bear, she was an 11-time NCAA individual champion, winning the 100-yard backstroke and 100-yard butterfly four times and the 200 back three times. A three-time NCAA Swimmer of the Year and Pac-10 Swimmer of the Year (2001-03), Coughlin was a four-time team MVP. She was named to the Pac-10 All-Academic team on three occasions, was a second-team Academic All-American as a junior and a CSAA Scholar All-American as a senior. At the Olympic level, she won five medals in 2004 (2 gold, 2 silver, 1 bronze), six in 2008 (1 gold, 2 silver, 3 bronze) and one in 2012 (bronze). Coughlin was the first woman ever to win back-to-back Olympic gold medals in the 100-meter backstroke (2004, 2008). She also owns 20 medals from the World Championships (8 gold, 7 silver, 5 bronze). Among her numerous awards are the 2002 USA Swimming Athlete of the Year and the 2003 Women’s Sports Foundation Sportswoman of the Year.

nataliecoughlin:

Cal Hall of Fame, Class of 2014! 

Natalie Coughlin (women’s swimming, 2001-04) – A three-time Olympian and winner of 12 medals – a total unsurpassed by any woman in U.S. Olympic history – Coughlin remains one of the premier swimmers in the world 10 years after her graduation from Cal. As a Golden Bear, she was an 11-time NCAA individual champion, winning the 100-yard backstroke and 100-yard butterfly four times and the 200 back three times. A three-time NCAA Swimmer of the Year and Pac-10 Swimmer of the Year (2001-03), Coughlin was a four-time team MVP. She was named to the Pac-10 All-Academic team on three occasions, was a second-team Academic All-American as a junior and a CSAA Scholar All-American as a senior. At the Olympic level, she won five medals in 2004 (2 gold, 2 silver, 1 bronze), six in 2008 (1 gold, 2 silver, 3 bronze) and one in 2012 (bronze). Coughlin was the first woman ever to win back-to-back Olympic gold medals in the 100-meter backstroke (2004, 2008). She also owns 20 medals from the World Championships (8 gold, 7 silver, 5 bronze). Among her numerous awards are the 2002 USA Swimming Athlete of the Year and the 2003 Women’s Sports Foundation Sportswoman of the Year.

Cal Softball

Cal Softball

RUGBY BEARS EDGED IN VARSITY CUP
PREPARING FOR NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP
The Rugby Bears are preparing for end-of-year exams while also transitioning to the Olympic 7s code of the game, in which they will compete at the 2014 Collegiate Rugby Championship May 31-June 1 at PPL Park in Philadelphia. Having won Cal’s first-ever national 7s championship at the 2013 CRC, the Bears went on to win the PAC 7s Conference crown in the autumn of 2013-14 and the PAC crown in 15s in March before finishing their spring 15s season with an 18-3 overall record (5-0 PAC) and a trip to the Varsity Cup National Championships final.
One week after the Bears compete at the upcoming CRC,  Cal head coach Jack Clark will be inducted in the U.S. Rugby Hall of Fame in Houston.
The Golden Bears scored five tries and fought for 80 minutes Saturday in the Varsity Cup  final, battling back from a 15-point deficit to within three points before BYU (18-1) pulled away to repeat as VC champions with a 43-33 win.
Cal winger Andrew Battaglia scored two tries and sophomore flyhalf Russell Webb added another for the Bears (18-3, 5-0 PAC), while two replacements, sophomore Miles Honens and senior Alex Bowman, found the try zone to end each half. Fullback Jake Anderson added eight points on his 4-of-5 conversion kicking.
The Bears remained in the match despite many self-imposed woes that came in the form of sprayed passes and dropped balls, an accomplishment coach Clark credited to the play of his forwards.
“Our forwards were magnificent today – how much possession they won for us, how good their defense was – I thought they bettered the BYU forwards, and that’s a big statement,” Clark said. “I’m really proud of the platform we had but, Seamus Kelly aside, we just couldn’t hold our nerves in the backs. We had a lot of turnovers there.”
The first three-time captain in Cal’s 132-year history, Kelly competed in his final collegiate 15s match Saturday, as did starters Tanner Mohr at hooker, Patrick Coleman at lock, Jack O’Beirne in the back row and Tiaan De Nysschen at No. 8.

RUGBY BEARS EDGED IN VARSITY CUP

PREPARING FOR NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP

The Rugby Bears are preparing for end-of-year exams while also transitioning to the Olympic 7s code of the game, in which they will compete at the 2014 Collegiate Rugby Championship May 31-June 1 at PPL Park in Philadelphia. Having won Cal’s first-ever national 7s championship at the 2013 CRC, the Bears went on to win the PAC 7s Conference crown in the autumn of 2013-14 and the PAC crown in 15s in March before finishing their spring 15s season with an 18-3 overall record (5-0 PAC) and a trip to the Varsity Cup National Championships final.

One week after the Bears compete at the upcoming CRC,  Cal head coach Jack Clark will be inducted in the U.S. Rugby Hall of Fame in Houston.

The Golden Bears scored five tries and fought for 80 minutes Saturday in the Varsity Cup  final, battling back from a 15-point deficit to within three points before BYU (18-1) pulled away to repeat as VC champions with a 43-33 win.

Cal winger Andrew Battaglia scored two tries and sophomore flyhalf Russell Webb added another for the Bears (18-3, 5-0 PAC), while two replacements, sophomore Miles Honens and senior Alex Bowman, found the try zone to end each half. Fullback Jake Anderson added eight points on his 4-of-5 conversion kicking.

The Bears remained in the match despite many self-imposed woes that came in the form of sprayed passes and dropped balls, an accomplishment coach Clark credited to the play of his forwards.

“Our forwards were magnificent today – how much possession they won for us, how good their defense was – I thought they bettered the BYU forwards, and that’s a big statement,” Clark said. “I’m really proud of the platform we had but, Seamus Kelly aside, we just couldn’t hold our nerves in the backs. We had a lot of turnovers there.”

The first three-time captain in Cal’s 132-year history, Kelly competed in his final collegiate 15s match Saturday, as did starters Tanner Mohr at hooker, Patrick Coleman at lock, Jack O’Beirne in the back row and Tiaan De Nysschen at No. 8.

No. 2 Cal Sweeps No. 11 Stanford To Capture Big Row
REDWOOD SHORES, Calif. – Second-ranked California men’s crew swept No. 11 Stanford, winning the varsity eight, second varsity eight and freshman eight races to capture the Big Row Saturday at Redwood Shores, Calif.
With the varsity eight win, the Golden Bears have captured the Schwabacher Cup five of the last six years and 22 of the last 24 years overall. Cal’s varsity eight raced down the course in 5:43.2 to win by open water of Stanford (5:53.0).
“All these races are big,” said California head men’s crew coach Mike Teti. “We had a tight race with Washington last week and you are looking to improve week-by-week. You want to be ascending heading into the championships and this is a big step. The significance of this race is about Jill Costello. We dedicate this race to her and we want to make sure we have a good performance and I think all our boats did today.”
In the second varsity eight, the Bears raced out to the early lead and finished with the open-water victory in 5:55.4 to Stanford’s 6:26.1.
In the men’s first race of the day, Cal defeated Stanford in the freshman eight, with a time of 5:54.6 to Stanford’s 6:03.7.
“We want all our boats to row a solid race from start to finish,” Teti continued. “We are looking for them to row a complete piece. I think all three boats executed pretty well today.
Cal’s varsity eight has recorded wins in six of its seven races so far this season, winning a pair of races to capture the Copley Cup at the season-opening San Diego Crew Classic against Stanford, Northeastern, Syracuse, George Washington and British Columbia, earning dual wins against No. 12 Wisconsin and No. 16 Oregon State in the Stanford Invitational two weeks ago, and posting the victory over Stanford this weekend.
Cal returns to action on Sunday, May 18, at the Pac-12 Rowing Championships at Lake Natoma in Gold River, Calif.

No. 2 Cal Sweeps No. 11 Stanford To Capture Big Row

REDWOOD SHORES, Calif. – Second-ranked California men’s crew swept No. 11 Stanford, winning the varsity eight, second varsity eight and freshman eight races to capture the Big Row Saturday at Redwood Shores, Calif.

With the varsity eight win, the Golden Bears have captured the Schwabacher Cup five of the last six years and 22 of the last 24 years overall. Cal’s varsity eight raced down the course in 5:43.2 to win by open water of Stanford (5:53.0).

“All these races are big,” said California head men’s crew coach Mike Teti. “We had a tight race with Washington last week and you are looking to improve week-by-week. You want to be ascending heading into the championships and this is a big step. The significance of this race is about Jill Costello. We dedicate this race to her and we want to make sure we have a good performance and I think all our boats did today.”

In the second varsity eight, the Bears raced out to the early lead and finished with the open-water victory in 5:55.4 to Stanford’s 6:26.1.

In the men’s first race of the day, Cal defeated Stanford in the freshman eight, with a time of 5:54.6 to Stanford’s 6:03.7.

“We want all our boats to row a solid race from start to finish,” Teti continued. “We are looking for them to row a complete piece. I think all three boats executed pretty well today.

Cal’s varsity eight has recorded wins in six of its seven races so far this season, winning a pair of races to capture the Copley Cup at the season-opening San Diego Crew Classic against Stanford, Northeastern, Syracuse, George Washington and British Columbia, earning dual wins against No. 12 Wisconsin and No. 16 Oregon State in the Stanford Invitational two weeks ago, and posting the victory over Stanford this weekend.

Cal returns to action on Sunday, May 18, at the Pac-12 Rowing Championships at Lake Natoma in Gold River, Calif.

Loving every minute of it
Embracing the moment, California’s Missy Franklin delivers
Chrös McDougall | NCAA.com
MINNEAPOLIS — If there was anybody left on the pool dock who Missy Franklin had not hugged, consider them the exception.
The perpetually bubbly Cal freshman shared a moment with just about anyone with a pulse during the three very full days at her first NCAA Division I Women’s Swimming and Diving Championships
And we’re not talking about the butt-out, shoulders-in, tap-on-the-back courtesy hugs that teenage girls are known to give out. These hugs are full out embraces: eyes shut, squeezed tight and followed by a playful laugh and earnest compliment.
If there is one thing for sure about Missy Franklin, it’s that she appreciates life.

And that’s why she was in Minneapolis for the Championships.
Since winning five medals, four of them gold, as a 17-year-old at the 2012 Olympics in London, Franklin has been one of the brightest stars in her sport.
"I still can’t believe that I am here," she said before the event while discussing the opportunities she’s had since the Olympics.
Franklin, a Centennial, Colo. native, plans to compete for California through her sophomore season before turning pro and focusing on the 2016 Olympics. Hoping to maximize her short time as a Golden Bear, the swimmer got a full plate of experiences at her first NCAA championships.
Her competition included dominance in setting an American record, drama in orchestrating a come-from-behind relay win, humility in settling for second and third place in two individual events, and adversity in dealing with a disappointing team performance.
And through it all, she maintained the big smile, the enthusiasm — with Franklin there is always enthusiasm — and an unwavering commitment to college swimming and, particularly, her college team.
"I’m so proud of my Bears and how far we’ve come in one season," she said Saturday, after her team finished a close third behind Georgia and Stanford. "And even though we get knocked down, we get right back up and we keep fighting, and that’s why I’m a Golden Bear, and that’s why I’m so proud to be a part of this team."
To see evidence of Franklin’s commitment, look no further than her program at the NCAA championships. The swimmer is an Olympic and world champion in the 100- and 200-meter backstroke, plus she holds the world record in the 200 back. Yet in Minneapolis, she swam in three freestyle races: the 100 yards, 200 yards and, notably, the grueling 500 yards.
"Honestly, I was going to swim wherever my team needed me to swim, and that was the 500," she said after finishing second in the event on Thursday, when Georgia sophomore Brittany MacLean barely snuck past her with a blazing final lap. "So I was up for the challenge."
Franklin had more success the next day in the tried and true 200 free, another event in which she won Olympic gold in 2012. She took the lead off her dive and finished with several feet of open water between her toes and the second-place finisher’s hands. Franklin’s time of 1 minute, 40.31 seconds set a new American record.
Franklin closed out her individual schedule with a third-place finish in the 100 free.
Perhaps her most memorable race in Minneapolis might actually have been the 800 relay, one of four relays in which she swam. Swimming the anchor leg in Friday night’s final event, Franklin dove into the water in third place, behind Stanford and more than two seconds behind Georgia.
"There’s honestly no better feeling than going in behind as an anchor and knowing that you just have to do whatever it takes to catch up," she said.
And that’s indeed what she did. The Olympian finished her leg in 1:40.08 to give Cal the win at 6:54.94. Georgia finished second in 6:55.09 and Stanford third in 6:55.62.
"There’s nothing better than an awesome 800 free relay," Cal coach Teri McKeever said.
Of course, after seven events in three days (and don’t forget prelims), Franklin also got to experience another staple of the NCAA championships: exhaustion. Although big programs at championship meets are nothing new for Franklin, the Olympics and world championships spread the events over more than twice as many days as the college championships.
So there it was on the last night, minutes after Franklin’s final race of the event, the 400 free relay, that the energy finally waned a bit. As Franklin waited with her teammates for the awards ceremony to start, she was smiling as usual, but for once it appeared she actually had to summon the effort to do so.
Before you knew it, though, the energy was back, the smile was effortless and Franklin was giving more hugs and earnest, enthusiastic congratulations.
"Hey, you feel a little tired after one of these things don’t you?" Georgia senior associate head coach Harvey Humphries called out as she walked away from their post-meet hug.
"No, I’ve got all the energy in the world," she shot back, seemingly sarcastically, but with her enthusiasm one can never be sure.

Loving every minute of it

Embracing the moment, California’s Missy Franklin delivers

Chrös McDougall | NCAA.com

MINNEAPOLIS — If there was anybody left on the pool dock who Missy Franklin had not hugged, consider them the exception.

The perpetually bubbly Cal freshman shared a moment with just about anyone with a pulse during the three very full days at her first NCAA Division I Women’s Swimming and Diving Championships

And we’re not talking about the butt-out, shoulders-in, tap-on-the-back courtesy hugs that teenage girls are known to give out. These hugs are full out embraces: eyes shut, squeezed tight and followed by a playful laugh and earnest compliment.

If there is one thing for sure about Missy Franklin, it’s that she appreciates life.

And that’s why she was in Minneapolis for the Championships.

Since winning five medals, four of them gold, as a 17-year-old at the 2012 Olympics in London, Franklin has been one of the brightest stars in her sport.

"I still can’t believe that I am here," she said before the event while discussing the opportunities she’s had since the Olympics.

Franklin, a Centennial, Colo. native, plans to compete for California through her sophomore season before turning pro and focusing on the 2016 Olympics. Hoping to maximize her short time as a Golden Bear, the swimmer got a full plate of experiences at her first NCAA championships.

Her competition included dominance in setting an American record, drama in orchestrating a come-from-behind relay win, humility in settling for second and third place in two individual events, and adversity in dealing with a disappointing team performance.

And through it all, she maintained the big smile, the enthusiasm — with Franklin there is always enthusiasm — and an unwavering commitment to college swimming and, particularly, her college team.

"I’m so proud of my Bears and how far we’ve come in one season," she said Saturday, after her team finished a close third behind Georgia and Stanford. "And even though we get knocked down, we get right back up and we keep fighting, and that’s why I’m a Golden Bear, and that’s why I’m so proud to be a part of this team."

To see evidence of Franklin’s commitment, look no further than her program at the NCAA championships. The swimmer is an Olympic and world champion in the 100- and 200-meter backstroke, plus she holds the world record in the 200 back. Yet in Minneapolis, she swam in three freestyle races: the 100 yards, 200 yards and, notably, the grueling 500 yards.

"Honestly, I was going to swim wherever my team needed me to swim, and that was the 500," she said after finishing second in the event on Thursday, when Georgia sophomore Brittany MacLean barely snuck past her with a blazing final lap. "So I was up for the challenge."

Franklin had more success the next day in the tried and true 200 free, another event in which she won Olympic gold in 2012. She took the lead off her dive and finished with several feet of open water between her toes and the second-place finisher’s hands. Franklin’s time of 1 minute, 40.31 seconds set a new American record.

Franklin closed out her individual schedule with a third-place finish in the 100 free.

Perhaps her most memorable race in Minneapolis might actually have been the 800 relay, one of four relays in which she swam. Swimming the anchor leg in Friday night’s final event, Franklin dove into the water in third place, behind Stanford and more than two seconds behind Georgia.

"There’s honestly no better feeling than going in behind as an anchor and knowing that you just have to do whatever it takes to catch up," she said.

And that’s indeed what she did. The Olympian finished her leg in 1:40.08 to give Cal the win at 6:54.94. Georgia finished second in 6:55.09 and Stanford third in 6:55.62.

"There’s nothing better than an awesome 800 free relay," Cal coach Teri McKeever said.

Of course, after seven events in three days (and don’t forget prelims), Franklin also got to experience another staple of the NCAA championships: exhaustion. Although big programs at championship meets are nothing new for Franklin, the Olympics and world championships spread the events over more than twice as many days as the college championships.

So there it was on the last night, minutes after Franklin’s final race of the event, the 400 free relay, that the energy finally waned a bit. As Franklin waited with her teammates for the awards ceremony to start, she was smiling as usual, but for once it appeared she actually had to summon the effort to do so.

Before you knew it, though, the energy was back, the smile was effortless and Franklin was giving more hugs and earnest, enthusiastic congratulations.

"Hey, you feel a little tired after one of these things don’t you?" Georgia senior associate head coach Harvey Humphries called out as she walked away from their post-meet hug.

"No, I’ve got all the energy in the world," she shot back, seemingly sarcastically, but with her enthusiasm one can never be sure.

Sandy Barbour, UC Berkeley Athletic Director, laughs with Cuonzo Martin, second from right, after Martin was introduced as the new Cal mens’ basketball coach.  (Carlos Avila Gonzalez/San Francisco Chronicle)
CUONZO MARTIN IS CAL’S NEW MEN’S BASKETBALL COACH
BERKELEY, Calif. — A more relaxed fan base, milder weather and a chance to coach at the top-rated public university in the country added up to Cuonzo Martin making the decision to leave Tennessee for California.
Cal hired Martin as the 16th men’s basketball coach in school history Tuesday, a decision that stunned Volunteers administrators and players after he had reaffirmed his commitment to Tennessee just two weeks ago. Martin said it was a difficult move but the opportunity at Cal was too much to pass up.
"It’s a beautiful place. I got off the plane and I just said, ‘Ahhh,’ " Martin said during his introductory news conference in Berkeley. "I think it has a chance to be special here. I think that’s the most intriguing thing to me. It’s a place I could spend the rest of my life."
Cal athletic director Sandy Barbour said Martin’s contract, which is still being finalized, is for five years. Financial details will be released at a later date.
Martin also said he will bring “quite a few” of his assistant coaches from Tennessee to Cal once his contract is complete.
Martin replaces Mike Montgomery, who retired last month after six seasons in Berkeley. Martin went 63-41 in three seasons at Tennessee, including a 24-13 mark and an appearance in the regional semifinals of the NCAA tournament this season. He also was previously the coach at Missouri State.
Martin succeeds one of the most successful college coaches in the history of the San Francisco Bay Area. Montgomery finished his career with a 677-317 record.
Cal hasn’t hired a head coach that spent the previous season as the head coach at another major conference school since 1954 when it brought in Pete Newell of Michigan State, according to ESPN Stats & Information. Newell went on to win the school’s only national championship in 1959.
Replacing a revered coach is nothing new for Martin.
Martin, a 42-year-old native of East Saint Louis, Illinois, took over a Tennessee program under NCAA investigation in 2011 and has averaged 21 wins per year. But, at times, he struggled to escape the shadow of former coach Bruce Pearl, who led the Volunteers to NCAA tournament appearances in each of his six years on the job.
"For me, as a coach, your style is your style," Martin said. "I don’t mind following guys. I like learning from guys."
Martin previously served as coach at Missouri State, going 61-41 in three seasons, including win totals of 24 and 26 in his final two seasons. In 2010-11, Martin guided Missouri State to the regular-season Missouri Valley championship and was named the conference’s Coach of the Year.
As a player, Martin earned first-team All-Big Ten honors in 1995 at Purdue when he averaged 18.4 points per game and made 91 3-pointers. After playing two seasons in the NBA, he served on the staff at his alma mater from 2000-08 — first as an assistant coach under Gene Keady and in his final year as associate head coach.
The Golden Bears also found out about another prize from Tennessee later in the day.
Kingsley Okoroh, a 7-foot-1 center originally from England who played this season for Westwind Preparatory Academy in Phoenix, announced on Twitter that he has switched his verbal commitment from Tennessee to California. Okoroh had verbally committed to Tennessee on Monday.

Sandy Barbour, UC Berkeley Athletic Director, laughs with Cuonzo Martin, second from right, after Martin was introduced as the new Cal mens’ basketball coach.  (Carlos Avila Gonzalez/San Francisco Chronicle)

CUONZO MARTIN IS CAL’S NEW MEN’S BASKETBALL COACH

BERKELEY, Calif. — A more relaxed fan base, milder weather and a chance to coach at the top-rated public university in the country added up to Cuonzo Martin making the decision to leave Tennessee for California.

Cal hired Martin as the 16th men’s basketball coach in school history Tuesday, a decision that stunned Volunteers administrators and players after he had reaffirmed his commitment to Tennessee just two weeks ago. Martin said it was a difficult move but the opportunity at Cal was too much to pass up.

"It’s a beautiful place. I got off the plane and I just said, ‘Ahhh,’ " Martin said during his introductory news conference in Berkeley. "I think it has a chance to be special here. I think that’s the most intriguing thing to me. It’s a place I could spend the rest of my life."

Cal athletic director Sandy Barbour said Martin’s contract, which is still being finalized, is for five years. Financial details will be released at a later date.

Martin also said he will bring “quite a few” of his assistant coaches from Tennessee to Cal once his contract is complete.

Martin replaces Mike Montgomery, who retired last month after six seasons in Berkeley. Martin went 63-41 in three seasons at Tennessee, including a 24-13 mark and an appearance in the regional semifinals of the NCAA tournament this season. He also was previously the coach at Missouri State.

Martin succeeds one of the most successful college coaches in the history of the San Francisco Bay Area. Montgomery finished his career with a 677-317 record.

Cal hasn’t hired a head coach that spent the previous season as the head coach at another major conference school since 1954 when it brought in Pete Newell of Michigan State, according to ESPN Stats & Information. Newell went on to win the school’s only national championship in 1959.

Replacing a revered coach is nothing new for Martin.

Martin, a 42-year-old native of East Saint Louis, Illinois, took over a Tennessee program under NCAA investigation in 2011 and has averaged 21 wins per year. But, at times, he struggled to escape the shadow of former coach Bruce Pearl, who led the Volunteers to NCAA tournament appearances in each of his six years on the job.

"For me, as a coach, your style is your style," Martin said. "I don’t mind following guys. I like learning from guys."

Martin previously served as coach at Missouri State, going 61-41 in three seasons, including win totals of 24 and 26 in his final two seasons. In 2010-11, Martin guided Missouri State to the regular-season Missouri Valley championship and was named the conference’s Coach of the Year.

As a player, Martin earned first-team All-Big Ten honors in 1995 at Purdue when he averaged 18.4 points per game and made 91 3-pointers. After playing two seasons in the NBA, he served on the staff at his alma mater from 2000-08 — first as an assistant coach under Gene Keady and in his final year as associate head coach.

The Golden Bears also found out about another prize from Tennessee later in the day.

Kingsley Okoroh, a 7-foot-1 center originally from England who played this season for Westwind Preparatory Academy in Phoenix, announced on Twitter that he has switched his verbal commitment from Tennessee to California. Okoroh had verbally committed to Tennessee on Monday.

Oski at practice today in Memorial Stadium

Oski at practice today in Memorial Stadium

GOLDEN BEARS WIN NCAA SWIMMING TITLE
3rd National Championship in 4 Years for Cal
AUSTIN, TEXAS — The Cal men’s swimming team has claimed its third national title in the past four years under head coach David Durden, following NCAA crowns in 2011 and 2012. The national title marks the Golden Bears’ fifth overall NCAA title in men’s swimming and diving after winning back-to-back championships in 1979 and 1980 under coach Nort Thornton.The Bears finished with 468.5 points while runner-up Texas totaled 417.5, as David Durden was named NCAA Coach of the Meet.
Freshman Ryan Murphy won another NCAA title, capturing the 200 back (1:37.35), while sophomore Jacob Pebley was fourth (1:39.59).
Other highlights were senior Jeremy Bagshaw finishing as the national runner-up in the 1650 free (14:39.00) and senior Marcin Tarcynski placing third in the 200 fly (1:42.11). 
In the 200 breast, junior Chuck Katis was fifth with a time of 1:52.64 and sophomore Josh Prenot was sixth (1:52.97). In another key final, junior Seth Stubblefield was seventh in the 100 free (42.59) and sophomore Tyler Messerschmidt was the B Final champion in the 100 free at 42.28.
Cal finished second in the final event of the night, the 400 free relay with a time of 2:49.48 from Messerschmidt, Murphy, junior Fabio Gimondi and Stubblefield. 
Cal quotes:
Ryan Murphy
On being freshman and a two-time NCAA champion:  "It’s awesome. It’s been one of the best meets of my life and it’s sad that it’s starting to come to an end. But I think this is great for the team, most importantly. Hopefully we can keep the momentum rolling."
On how this meet differs from others he’s been in:  "This meet is so physically taxing. I’ve never been an emotional swimmer, but this meet, in order to be successful, you have to swim with a lot of emotion. So it’s been a bit of an adjustment, but it’s so much fun."

GOLDEN BEARS WIN NCAA SWIMMING TITLE

3rd National Championship in 4 Years for Cal

AUSTIN, TEXAS — The Cal men’s swimming team has claimed its third national title in the past four years under head coach David Durden, following NCAA crowns in 2011 and 2012. The national title marks the Golden Bears’ fifth overall NCAA title in men’s swimming and diving after winning back-to-back championships in 1979 and 1980 under coach Nort Thornton.The Bears finished with 468.5 points while runner-up Texas totaled 417.5, as David Durden was named NCAA Coach of the Meet.

Freshman Ryan Murphy won another NCAA title, capturing the 200 back (1:37.35), while sophomore Jacob Pebley was fourth (1:39.59).

Other highlights were senior Jeremy Bagshaw finishing as the national runner-up in the 1650 free (14:39.00) and senior Marcin Tarcynski placing third in the 200 fly (1:42.11). 

In the 200 breast, junior Chuck Katis was fifth with a time of 1:52.64 and sophomore Josh Prenot was sixth (1:52.97). In another key final, junior Seth Stubblefield was seventh in the 100 free (42.59) and sophomore Tyler Messerschmidt was the B Final champion in the 100 free at 42.28.

Cal finished second in the final event of the night, the 400 free relay with a time of 2:49.48 from Messerschmidt, Murphy, junior Fabio Gimondi and Stubblefield. 

Cal quotes:

Ryan Murphy

On being freshman and a two-time NCAA champion:  "It’s awesome. It’s been one of the best meets of my life and it’s sad that it’s starting to come to an end. But I think this is great for the team, most importantly. Hopefully we can keep the momentum rolling."

On how this meet differs from others he’s been in:  "This meet is so physically taxing. I’ve never been an emotional swimmer, but this meet, in order to be successful, you have to swim with a lot of emotion. So it’s been a bit of an adjustment, but it’s so much fun."

COACH MONTGOMERY RETIRING
BERKELEY – Mike Montgomery, one of college basketball’s all-time winningest coaches, has announced his retirement as head men’s basketball coach at the University of California, Berkeley. Montgomery, who directed the Golden Bears’ program to postseason appearances during each of his six seasons at the school, enjoyed a storied career that spanned more than four decades and also included head coaching stints at rival Stanford, Montana and with the Golden State Warriors.
Commenting on his decision to retire, Montgomery said, “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. This is the right time for me to move on to the next phase of my life. I want to thank my colleagues in the coaching profession and the student-athletes I’ve had the opportunity to coach and mentor. It has been an incredible journey and now I look forward to devoting more time to my family and visiting the countless friends I have met during my career.
“The six years I have spent at Cal have been some of the greatest in my career and I want to thank Sandy [Barbour, Director of Athletics] and the administration for their outstanding support,” he continued. “This is a great program and Cal Basketball is positioned for success for many years to come. The success I have enjoyed here would not be possible without the unconditional support from everyone I have been fortunate enough to work with throughout my coaching career.”
Under Montgomery’s tutelage, the Cal men’s basketball program enjoyed its winningest six-year stretch in school history with 130 victories during his tenure as head coach. He completed his career as the school’s third-winningest coach with a 130-73 record (.640) and in 2010, guided the Bears to their first conference regular-season championship in 50 years. Since Montgomery was hired, Cal is the only team to finish in the top-four of the conference standings each of the last six seasons and the team’s 69 league victories during this stretch make it the third-winningest program in the Pac-12 during this period. In addition, Montgomery led the Golden Bears to four NCAA Tournament berths and a pair of National Invitation Tournament appearances, becoming the only coach in school history to guide Cal to six consecutive postseason berths.   
Commenting on Montgomery’s decision to retire, Barbour said, “Mike has been outstanding in his six years at the helm of our men’s basketball program. In addition to being one of the greatest to ever coach the game, he has been an amazing leader, educator and mentor to our student-athletes and all of the young men he has coached. Mike is a coaching icon and has made this one of the most competitive programs in the conference and in the country.  We are thankful for all he has done to elevate this program during his tenure.”
UC Berkeley Chancellor Nicholas Dirks also spoke highly of the impact the veteran head coach made on campus.
“With a strong, consistent commitment to the success of his student athletes on and off the court, Mike was the quintessential Cal coach,” Dirks said. “We wish him the very best, and on behalf of the university I want to thank Mike for the contributions he made to Cal Athletics and the Berkeley campus as a whole.”
Legendary CareerIn 32 seasons as a collegiate head coach, Montgomery captured 677 career victories and exits the game as the 25th-winningest head men’s basketball coach with at least 10 years of experience at the Division I level in NCAA history. He ranks third on the Pac-12’s all-time victories list behind Arizona’s Lute Olsen and UCLA’s John Wooden with 282 league wins between his time at both Cal and Stanford. Montgomery enjoyed 31 winning seasons in his 32 years as a collegiate head coach.
The coaching icon closes his storied career with a 677-316 (.682) record at the college level. Montgomery’s 24 total postseason appearances as a collegiate coach include 16 NCAA Tournaments. He developed and mentored 43 All-Pac-12 players, 31 first- or second-team Pac-12 all-academic selections and coached eight first-round NBA Draft picks. Montgomery posted three 30-win seasons and 22, 20-win campaigns.
Montgomery garnered several honors throughout his career, including the prestigious John R. Wooden “Legends of Coaching” Lifetime Achievement Award in 2004. The Long Beach, Calif., native was tabbed the Sports Illustrated National Coach of the Year in 2000 and the Naismith and Basketball Times Coach of the Year in 2004.  He was the Pac-10 Coach of the Year four times.
A 1968 graduate of Long Beach State, Montgomery began his coaching career as an assistant coach at the U.S. Coast Guard Academy, Colorado State, the Citadel, Florida and Boise State. He earned his master’s degree at Colorado State in 1976. 
Mike Montgomery’s Cal Coaching Career
Year                  Overall   Pct.            Conf.   Pct.       Finish   Postseason          

2008-09             22-11    .667            11-7    .611        T-3rd       NCAA 1st Round         2009-10             24-11    .686            13-5    .722        1st          NCAA 2nd Round        2010-11             18-15    .545            10-8    .556        T-4th       NIT 2nd Round           2011-12             24-10    .727            13-5    .722        T-2nd      NCAA 1st Round         2012-13             21-12    .636            12-6    .667        T-2nd      NCAA 3rd Round         2013-14             21-14    .600            10-8    .556        T-3rd       NIT QuarterfinalsTotals               130-73    .640          69-39    .639
(Career)           677-316    .682     355-189    .653

COACH MONTGOMERY RETIRING

BERKELEY – Mike Montgomery, one of college basketball’s all-time winningest coaches, has announced his retirement as head men’s basketball coach at the University of California, Berkeley. Montgomery, who directed the Golden Bears’ program to postseason appearances during each of his six seasons at the school, enjoyed a storied career that spanned more than four decades and also included head coaching stints at rival Stanford, Montana and with the Golden State Warriors.

Commenting on his decision to retire, Montgomery said, “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. This is the right time for me to move on to the next phase of my life. I want to thank my colleagues in the coaching profession and the student-athletes I’ve had the opportunity to coach and mentor. It has been an incredible journey and now I look forward to devoting more time to my family and visiting the countless friends I have met during my career.

“The six years I have spent at Cal have been some of the greatest in my career and I want to thank Sandy [Barbour, Director of Athletics] and the administration for their outstanding support,” he continued. “This is a great program and Cal Basketball is positioned for success for many years to come. The success I have enjoyed here would not be possible without the unconditional support from everyone I have been fortunate enough to work with throughout my coaching career.”

Under Montgomery’s tutelage, the Cal men’s basketball program enjoyed its winningest six-year stretch in school history with 130 victories during his tenure as head coach. He completed his career as the school’s third-winningest coach with a 130-73 record (.640) and in 2010, guided the Bears to their first conference regular-season championship in 50 years. Since Montgomery was hired, Cal is the only team to finish in the top-four of the conference standings each of the last six seasons and the team’s 69 league victories during this stretch make it the third-winningest program in the Pac-12 during this period. In addition, Montgomery led the Golden Bears to four NCAA Tournament berths and a pair of National Invitation Tournament appearances, becoming the only coach in school history to guide Cal to six consecutive postseason berths.   

Commenting on Montgomery’s decision to retire, Barbour said, “Mike has been outstanding in his six years at the helm of our men’s basketball program. In addition to being one of the greatest to ever coach the game, he has been an amazing leader, educator and mentor to our student-athletes and all of the young men he has coached. Mike is a coaching icon and has made this one of the most competitive programs in the conference and in the country.  We are thankful for all he has done to elevate this program during his tenure.”

UC Berkeley Chancellor Nicholas Dirks also spoke highly of the impact the veteran head coach made on campus.

“With a strong, consistent commitment to the success of his student athletes on and off the court, Mike was the quintessential Cal coach,” Dirks said. “We wish him the very best, and on behalf of the university I want to thank Mike for the contributions he made to Cal Athletics and the Berkeley campus as a whole.”

Legendary Career
In 32 seasons as a collegiate head coach, Montgomery captured 677 career victories and exits the game as the 25th-winningest head men’s basketball coach with at least 10 years of experience at the Division I level in NCAA history. He ranks third on the Pac-12’s all-time victories list behind Arizona’s Lute Olsen and UCLA’s John Wooden with 282 league wins between his time at both Cal and Stanford. Montgomery enjoyed 31 winning seasons in his 32 years as a collegiate head coach.

The coaching icon closes his storied career with a 677-316 (.682) record at the college level. Montgomery’s 24 total postseason appearances as a collegiate coach include 16 NCAA Tournaments. He developed and mentored 43 All-Pac-12 players, 31 first- or second-team Pac-12 all-academic selections and coached eight first-round NBA Draft picks. Montgomery posted three 30-win seasons and 22, 20-win campaigns.

Montgomery garnered several honors throughout his career, including the prestigious John R. Wooden “Legends of Coaching” Lifetime Achievement Award in 2004. The Long Beach, Calif., native was tabbed the Sports Illustrated National Coach of the Year in 2000 and the Naismith and Basketball Times Coach of the Year in 2004.  He was the Pac-10 Coach of the Year four times.

A 1968 graduate of Long Beach State, Montgomery began his coaching career as an assistant coach at the U.S. Coast Guard Academy, Colorado State, the Citadel, Florida and Boise State. He earned his master’s degree at Colorado State in 1976. 

Mike Montgomery’s Cal Coaching Career

Year                  Overall   Pct.            Conf.   Pct.       Finish   Postseason          

2008-09             22-11    .667            11-7    .611        T-3rd       NCAA 1st Round         
2009-10             24-11    .686            13-5    .722        1st          NCAA 2nd Round        
2010-11             18-15    .545            10-8    .556        T-4th       NIT 2nd Round           
2011-12             24-10    .727            13-5    .722        T-2nd      NCAA 1st Round         
2012-13             21-12    .636            12-6    .667        T-2nd      NCAA 3rd Round         
2013-14             21-14    .600            10-8    .556        T-3rd       NIT Quarterfinals
Totals               130-73    .640          69-39    .639

(Career)           677-316    .682     355-189    .653

 
BERKELEY, CA - The Golden Bears are headed to the third round of the NIT after their second win in the tournament.  
Jabari Bird scored 19 points, David Kravish had 13 points and eight rebounds and California beat Arkansas 75-64 in a convincing win at Haas Pavillion tonight.

Tyrone Wallace added 16 points for the Golden Bears (21-13), who will play top-seeded SMU on Wednesday in Dallas.

California (21-13) played solid basketball and built up an impressive 24 point lead with 12:30 remaining before a late flurry by the Razorbacks trimmed the gap to single digits in the final minute following a three-point play by  Rashad Madden. 

But Wallace, who struggled with his shot in the second half, made four free throws and Justin Cobbs added two more down the stretch to build the lead back up to 11 and help the Bears advance to the quarterfinals.

Madden had 15 points while Bobby Portis added 12 points and 10 rebounds for Arkansas (22-12).

 

BERKELEY, CA - The Golden Bears are headed to the third round of the NIT after their second win in the tournament.  

Jabari Bird scored 19 points, David Kravish had 13 points and eight rebounds and California beat Arkansas 75-64 in a convincing win at Haas Pavillion tonight.

Tyrone Wallace added 16 points for the Golden Bears (21-13), who will play top-seeded SMU on Wednesday in Dallas.

California (21-13) played solid basketball and built up an impressive 24 point lead with 12:30 remaining before a late flurry by the Razorbacks trimmed the gap to single digits in the final minute following a three-point play by  Rashad Madden. 

But Wallace, who struggled with his shot in the second half, made four free throws and Justin Cobbs added two more down the stretch to build the lead back up to 11 and help the Bears advance to the quarterfinals.

Madden had 15 points while Bobby Portis added 12 points and 10 rebounds for Arkansas (22-12).

retropopcult:

Jason Kidd & Co were the team that finally stopped the Duke juggernaut.  The defending national champions, winners of back-to-back titles the previous two seasons, were heavy favorites until the Cal Golden Bears played an incredible game and knocked off the Blue Devils 82-77.

retropopcult:

Jason Kidd & Co were the team that finally stopped the Duke juggernaut.  The defending national champions, winners of back-to-back titles the previous two seasons, were heavy favorites until the Cal Golden Bears played an incredible game and knocked off the Blue Devils 82-77.














JUSTIN COBBS EARNS FIRST TEAM ALL PAC-12 HONORS










BERKELEY, Calif. – California senior guard Justin Cobbs was named a First Team All-Pac-12 selection in a vote by the league’s 12 head coaches, the conference announced on Monday. He was joined by senior forward Richard Solomon, who was an honorable mention selection, David Kravish, who was an honorable mention pick on the all-defensive squad, and Jordan Mathews, who earned All-Freshman honorable mention.
Cobbs, the Pac-12’s active career assist leader with 706 in 98 career games, completed the regular season ranked second in the Pac-12 and 23rd nationally with a 5.8 apg. average. He recently moved ahead of Jason Kidd (1992-94) for fourth in school history in assists. His 5.2 apg. career average ranks third at Cal. The guard also completed the regular season ranked third in the Pac-12 in assist/turnover ratio (2.4), eighth in free throw percentage (.813), and 10th in scoring (15.6 ppg.). The senior led or tied for the team lead in scoring in 15 games this season.  
In league games, Cobbs finished the regular season ninth in the Pac-12 with 16.7 ppg. He has recorded nine 20-point games overall this season, including a career-best 31-point performance against Dayton in the Maui Invitational. He has posted at least seven assists in a game 15 times this season. He hit the game-winning shot in the final minute to go along with 19 points and seven assists as the Golden Bear lifted Cal to a 60-58 victory over top-ranked Arizona on Feb. 1.
Cobbs is one of just three Golden Bears in school history to record at least 1,400 career points and 500 career assists. He enters the Pac-12 Tournament with 1,408 career points and 506 career assists in just his third season at Cal after transferring from the University of Minnesota.
Cobbs was a second-team all-conference selection last season and an honorable mention pick in 2012.
Solomon completed the regular season as the Pac-12’s rebounding king after holding the top-spot all season. He is one of just three individuals from the six power conferences to average a double-double this season with 11.2 ppg. and 10.0 rpg. After posting just four double-doubles in his first three seasons, the senior recorded nine double-doubles in 29 games this year. With 291 rebounds this season, Solomon ranks 17th in the nation. He posted a career-best 17 rebounds against Oakland earlier this season. Solomon has also recorded 37 blocks this season, including a season-best four in this past Saturday’s victory over Colorado on senior day. The senior completed the regular-season sixth in the Pac-12 in field goal percentage at .547.    
Kravish, who has started the last 85 games for the Bears, completed the regular season second on the team in scoring (11.3 ppg.) and rebounding (7.7 rpg.). With a team-best 60 blocks on the season, the junior finished third in the Pac-12 in the category with an average of 1.9 bpg. He ranks second in school history with 154 career blocks and is currently second on the Cal single-season chart with his 60 blocks this season. The total is three behind his school-record 63 blocks recorded last season. Kravish registered six double-doubles this season, including two in three games in the Maui Invitational back in November against Arkansas and Dayton. He posted a career-high 19 points twice this season against Arkansas and UC Irvine.  
Mathews has appeared in all 28 games, making 12 starts and averaging 8.8 points per game. He scored 32 points in a road game at Oregon, tying for the third-highest mark by a freshman in Pac-12 history. He’s also the Bears’ second-leading scorer in road games, averaging 12.8 points per game in those contests.
Cal completed the regular season with a 19-12 overall record and a 10-8 mark in the conference, extending its streak as the only team in the league to place in the top-four in the standing each of the last six years since Mike Montgomery was hired in Berkeley.
Thanks to Cobbs’, Solomon’s, Kravish’s and Mathews’ performance in the overtime win against Colorado on Saturday, Cal headed into this week’s Pac-12 Tournament as the No. 4 seed and had a bye into Thursday’s quarterfinal round.
JUSTIN COBBS EARNS FIRST TEAM ALL PAC-12 HONORS

BERKELEY, Calif. – California senior guard Justin Cobbs was named a First Team All-Pac-12 selection in a vote by the league’s 12 head coaches, the conference announced on Monday. He was joined by senior forward Richard Solomon, who was an honorable mention selection, David Kravish, who was an honorable mention pick on the all-defensive squad, and Jordan Mathews, who earned All-Freshman honorable mention.

Cobbs, the Pac-12’s active career assist leader with 706 in 98 career games, completed the regular season ranked second in the Pac-12 and 23rd nationally with a 5.8 apg. average. He recently moved ahead of Jason Kidd (1992-94) for fourth in school history in assists. His 5.2 apg. career average ranks third at Cal. The guard also completed the regular season ranked third in the Pac-12 in assist/turnover ratio (2.4), eighth in free throw percentage (.813), and 10th in scoring (15.6 ppg.). The senior led or tied for the team lead in scoring in 15 games this season.  

In league games, Cobbs finished the regular season ninth in the Pac-12 with 16.7 ppg. He has recorded nine 20-point games overall this season, including a career-best 31-point performance against Dayton in the Maui Invitational. He has posted at least seven assists in a game 15 times this season. He hit the game-winning shot in the final minute to go along with 19 points and seven assists as the Golden Bear lifted Cal to a 60-58 victory over top-ranked Arizona on Feb. 1.

Cobbs is one of just three Golden Bears in school history to record at least 1,400 career points and 500 career assists. He enters the Pac-12 Tournament with 1,408 career points and 506 career assists in just his third season at Cal after transferring from the University of Minnesota.

Cobbs was a second-team all-conference selection last season and an honorable mention pick in 2012.

Solomon completed the regular season as the Pac-12’s rebounding king after holding the top-spot all season. He is one of just three individuals from the six power conferences to average a double-double this season with 11.2 ppg. and 10.0 rpg. After posting just four double-doubles in his first three seasons, the senior recorded nine double-doubles in 29 games this year. With 291 rebounds this season, Solomon ranks 17th in the nation. He posted a career-best 17 rebounds against Oakland earlier this season. Solomon has also recorded 37 blocks this season, including a season-best four in this past Saturday’s victory over Colorado on senior day. The senior completed the regular-season sixth in the Pac-12 in field goal percentage at .547.    

Kravish, who has started the last 85 games for the Bears, completed the regular season second on the team in scoring (11.3 ppg.) and rebounding (7.7 rpg.). With a team-best 60 blocks on the season, the junior finished third in the Pac-12 in the category with an average of 1.9 bpg. He ranks second in school history with 154 career blocks and is currently second on the Cal single-season chart with his 60 blocks this season. The total is three behind his school-record 63 blocks recorded last season. Kravish registered six double-doubles this season, including two in three games in the Maui Invitational back in November against Arkansas and Dayton. He posted a career-high 19 points twice this season against Arkansas and UC Irvine.  

Mathews has appeared in all 28 games, making 12 starts and averaging 8.8 points per game. He scored 32 points in a road game at Oregon, tying for the third-highest mark by a freshman in Pac-12 history. He’s also the Bears’ second-leading scorer in road games, averaging 12.8 points per game in those contests.

Cal completed the regular season with a 19-12 overall record and a 10-8 mark in the conference, extending its streak as the only team in the league to place in the top-four in the standing each of the last six years since Mike Montgomery was hired in Berkeley.

Thanks to Cobbs’, Solomon’s, Kravish’s and Mathews’ performance in the overtime win against Colorado on Saturday, Cal headed into this week’s Pac-12 Tournament as the No. 4 seed and had a bye into Thursday’s quarterfinal round.

California’s Tyrone Wallace shoots over Washington’s Desmond Simmons during the first half of their Pac-12 basketball contest on Saturday, Feb. 15, 2014, in Seattle. (Stephen Brashear - AP Photo)
CAL STORMS BACK FOR 72-59 OVER HUSKIES IN SEATTLE
Bears Sweep Washington Schools

SEATTLE (AP) – California ended the first half on a 19-2 run to erase a double-digit deficit and the Golden Bears never looked back en route to a 72-59 victory over Washington Saturday at Edmundson Pavilion to remain in the thick of the Pac-12 Conference title race.
Led by 20 points from Tyrone Wallace and 18 from Richard Solomon (along with seven rebounds), Cal posted the season sweep of the Washington schools for the first time since 2009 and handed the Huskies their first home loss of the season.
The Golden Bears, who had already taken the Cougars to overtime on Wednesday night for an 80-76 win, looked sluggish at the start of play. But Cal stormed back from 12 points down (27-25) with 19 of the final 21 points over the final 6:49 of the first half to lead, 34-29, at the break. The Bears opened the second half with consecutive buckets by Justin Cobbs and Richard Solomon.
The Golden Bears (17-8, 8-4 Pac-12) now get four of their final six conference games at home.
The Bears pushed the lead to as many as 13 in the second half and then stemmed every run Washington attempted to make.
Andrew Andrews led Washington with 21 points after being benched in the second half of the Huskies win over Stanford on Wednesday. Leading scorer C.J. Wilcox was held to eight points, 11 below his season average.
Nigel Williams-Goss added 12 for Washington, but the Huskies (14-12, 6-7) were completely dominated by Cal’s defense in the second half.
Justin Cobbs added 10 points, six rebounds and seven assists as the Bears swept the season series. California routed the Huskies 82-56 in Berkeley on Jan. 15 that brought to a crashing halt Washington’s quick start to conference play.
Washington’s biggest lead came with 6:49 left in the first half after Andrews knocked down his third 3-pointer of the half to give the Huskies a 27-15 lead. But the Bears forced turnovers on four of the next six possessions and capitalized with some easy transition baskets. Cal finished with 14 points off 10 UW turnovers in the first half and the Bears capped the half by hitting five of their final six shots.
Washington’s only basket over the final 6:47 of the half came on a basket interference call with 8.1 seconds that handed Wilcox his only points of the half. Washington’s leading scorer was otherwise shut out of the offense.
California scored six of the first eight to start the second half and stretched the lead to 45-35 with 15:40 left when Jordan Mathews’ 3-pointer took a friendly bounce and fell through. After Andrews missed on a wild drive into the lane, Wallace spun away from Wilcox and scored with a finger roll while being fouled. The three-point play gave California a 50-37 lead with 13:05 left.
Washington scored eight straight to get back within five but the Bears stemmed every run made by the Huskies. Free throws by Solomon and a smart dribble-drive dunk from Jabari Bird pushed the lead back to nine. When Blackwell scored off a scramble to get Washington within 56-50 with 6:30 left, Ricky Kreklow answered with a 25-foot 3-pointer for a nine-point Cal lead.
The Bears pulled away for good when Cobbs dribbled down the shot clock and found Solomon for a 17-foot jumper with 3:39 left to give Cal a 63-52 lead.  They never looked back, winning by 13.
Cal is back in third place in the Pac-12 race and has a chance to move back into second on Wednesday when they host the UCLA Bruins.

California’s Tyrone Wallace shoots over Washington’s Desmond Simmons during the first half of their Pac-12 basketball contest on Saturday, Feb. 15, 2014, in Seattle. (Stephen Brashear - AP Photo)

CAL STORMS BACK FOR 72-59 OVER HUSKIES IN SEATTLE

Bears Sweep Washington Schools

SEATTLE (AP) – California ended the first half on a 19-2 run to erase a double-digit deficit and the Golden Bears never looked back en route to a 72-59 victory over Washington Saturday at Edmundson Pavilion to remain in the thick of the Pac-12 Conference title race.

Led by 20 points from Tyrone Wallace and 18 from Richard Solomon (along with seven rebounds), Cal posted the season sweep of the Washington schools for the first time since 2009 and handed the Huskies their first home loss of the season.

The Golden Bears, who had already taken the Cougars to overtime on Wednesday night for an 80-76 win, looked sluggish at the start of play. But Cal stormed back from 12 points down (27-25) with 19 of the final 21 points over the final 6:49 of the first half to lead, 34-29, at the break. The Bears opened the second half with consecutive buckets by Justin Cobbs and Richard Solomon.

The Golden Bears (17-8, 8-4 Pac-12) now get four of their final six conference games at home.

The Bears pushed the lead to as many as 13 in the second half and then stemmed every run Washington attempted to make.

Andrew Andrews led Washington with 21 points after being benched in the second half of the Huskies win over Stanford on Wednesday. Leading scorer C.J. Wilcox was held to eight points, 11 below his season average.

Nigel Williams-Goss added 12 for Washington, but the Huskies (14-12, 6-7) were completely dominated by Cal’s defense in the second half.

Justin Cobbs added 10 points, six rebounds and seven assists as the Bears swept the season series. California routed the Huskies 82-56 in Berkeley on Jan. 15 that brought to a crashing halt Washington’s quick start to conference play.

Washington’s biggest lead came with 6:49 left in the first half after Andrews knocked down his third 3-pointer of the half to give the Huskies a 27-15 lead. But the Bears forced turnovers on four of the next six possessions and capitalized with some easy transition baskets. Cal finished with 14 points off 10 UW turnovers in the first half and the Bears capped the half by hitting five of their final six shots.

Washington’s only basket over the final 6:47 of the half came on a basket interference call with 8.1 seconds that handed Wilcox his only points of the half. Washington’s leading scorer was otherwise shut out of the offense.

California scored six of the first eight to start the second half and stretched the lead to 45-35 with 15:40 left when Jordan Mathews’ 3-pointer took a friendly bounce and fell through. After Andrews missed on a wild drive into the lane, Wallace spun away from Wilcox and scored with a finger roll while being fouled. The three-point play gave California a 50-37 lead with 13:05 left.

Washington scored eight straight to get back within five but the Bears stemmed every run made by the Huskies. Free throws by Solomon and a smart dribble-drive dunk from Jabari Bird pushed the lead back to nine. When Blackwell scored off a scramble to get Washington within 56-50 with 6:30 left, Ricky Kreklow answered with a 25-foot 3-pointer for a nine-point Cal lead.

The Bears pulled away for good when Cobbs dribbled down the shot clock and found Solomon for a 17-foot jumper with 3:39 left to give Cal a 63-52 lead.  They never looked back, winning by 13.

Cal is back in third place in the Pac-12 race and has a chance to move back into second on Wednesday when they host the UCLA Bruins.