Nothing is ever quite as amusing as watching the mention of a coachs name create unregulated hyperactivity in adults especially when that is a name that doesnt ring many bells.Yet Fresno State football coach Tim DeRuyter and coachless California are being linked together, and . . . well, let hilarity ensue.The DeRuyter rumors, which are barely hours old and have a faint whiff of Internet hoax to them, are based on his one year at Fresno State, which is a bowl invitation away from being concluded. The Bulldogs went 9-3, and though one year is not usually enough to get your name on the rumor tilt-a-whirl, such are the times that anyone who has lost fewer than six games (including broadcasters, all of whom are undefeated this season) is in play for any vacancy.Plus, the rumors began on Twitter, the 21st century fertilizer for fertilizer.Of course, most rumors that pan out also start on Twitter. So there you go. DeRuyter is the favorite to replace Jeff Tedford, and has no chance to replace Jeff Tedford, all at the same time. Beauty.Other rumors have suggested that former Raider coach Hue Jackson is a player in the talks, and one would not be surprised to learn that conversations either have or will be initiated between himhis people and Cal AD Sandy Barbourher people. Conversations, of course, being the MiracleGro of coaching rumors.But there are at least two things at work here that mitigate against either DeRuyter or Jackson.One, Barbour is using a search committee, and search committees tend to slow rather than speed a process. It has been only 10 days since Tedford was decoupled, and Barbour needs to hit not just a home run here, but a three-run homer, and do it without a ton of money.In other words, creativity matters, and creativity also mitigates against speed.And two, it is widely believed by those who are conversant with the corridors of the Cal money train that there are still hopes of convincing Boise States Chris Petersen to overcome the burden of his friendship with Tedford to consider the job.Petersen would be the big-name hire that would galvanize wallets, and Cals monumental financial problems require full billfold participation from all available alumnoids. DeRuyter would not be that hire, and neither would Jackson, for that matter.In short, the coachs chair remains mostly cold upholstery for the foreseeable future, no matter how many space heaters Twitter tries to fire up.Besides, I still hold out hope for Bobby Petrino to get the job, just to see an entire university pull off its own head.
MALIBU -- Jock Landale had 23 points and 14 rebounds to lead No. 20 Saint Mary's to a 78-49 victory over Pepperdine on Thursday night.
The Gaels (25-3, 15-2 West Coast) continued to roll in winning 10 of their last 11 games. Their only loss in that stretch was to No. 1 Gonzaga.
Lamond Murray Jr. had 17 points for Pepperdine (9-20, 5-12), which lost its third consecutive game.
A power outage caused the lights to go out with 18:41 left in the second half. Pepperdine official Roger Horne said power surges throughout campus caused the 15-minute delay. Players stayed loose by shooting in the dark.
The delay didn't slow down Saint Mary's, which led 41-21 before the lights went out. Landale, the junior center from Australia, had an empathic dunk for the first basket after play resumed and the Gaels cruised from there.
Saint Mary's did what it needed to do in recording another road victory. The Gaels and Landale continued to flex their usual muscles as they dominated in the paint and outrebounded the Waves 47-29.
Pepperdine has weathered the storm of an injury-plagued season and played with its 10th lineup of the season. Chris Reyes (heel) was ruled out for the season on Thursday, but the Waves still suited up nine players.
Saint Mary's returns home to play its regular-season finale against Santa Clara on Saturday, the final tuneup before the WCC Tournament. The Gaels won the last matchup, 72-59.
Pepperdine plays its last home game on Saturday against San Francisco. It's the final game at Firestone Fieldhouse for guard Jeremy Major, who is scheduled to make his 122nd career start, which would become most in school history.
STANFORD -- Even though Stanford has been buried in the lower half of the Pac-12 standings all season, Reid Travis isn't so sure his team is an underdog against No. 6 Oregon.
That might be a stretch considering the Ducks are making a run at the conference title but that didn't seem to matter to Travis.
"The way we're playing now is great for this time of year," Travis said following Stanford's 79-66 win over Oregon State on Wednesday. "I feel like we're really taking off. Even though our record doesn't reflect it I really do feel that we're one of the top teams so take that as you want to."
Travis had 17 points and eight rebounds to lead four players in double figures. Marcus Allen also scored 17, Dorian Pickens added 15 and Robert Cartwright had 10 as the Cardinal beat the Beavers for the 21st time in the last 23 games between the two teams at Maples Pavilion.
Stanford (14-13, 6-9 Pac-12) led by as many as 25 but had to hold on after Oregon State (5-24, 1-15) pulled within 74-63 with 3:28 left on JaQuori McLaughlin's 3-pointer.
Allen and Pickens scored back-to-back buckets for Stanford, and after Stephen Thompson's putback for Oregon State, Pickens made a 3-pointer.
"We're pointing in the right direction on both ends of the floor," Allen said. "Guys are getting good looks . and on defense we're more active. Hopefully that continues."
Drew Eubanks had 21 points and 14 rebounds for Oregon State. Gligorije Rakocevic added a season-high 16 points for the Beavers, who couldn't follow up after beating Utah last week for their first conference win of the season.
Stanford built a quick double-digit lead despite a strong start by Rakocevic. The 6-foot-11-foot center, averaging 3.8 points going into the game, matched his season high in the first half while scoring 12 points on 6 of 8 shooting.
The Cardinal countered with a more balanced attack after adjusting to the Beavers' zone defense. Travis, Allen, Cartwright and Pickens combined for 32 points in the first half to help Stanford take a 43-33 lead.
The Cardinal also controlled the boards while outscoring the Beavers 46-22 in the paint.
"For us to be at our best we're going to score from the free throw line, like we did in the Cal game, or score around the basket," Stanford coach Jerod Haase said. "Smash-mouth is a football term but if it was a basketball term I think that would be a good word for us."
Travis got Stanford going again after halftime and helped push the Cardinal lead to 69-44.
Eubanks nearly brought Oregon State back. He scored 17 points in the second half, including 13 of the Beavers' first 20.
Oregon State: The Beavers hopes of winning back-to-back games for the first time since beating Prairie View A&M and Texas-San Antonio to open the season didn't last long. They didn't play poorly - Oregon State shot close to 47 percent most of the night - but couldn't match Stanford's run coming out of halftime and never recovered.
Stanford: The win pushed the Cardinal into a tie for seventh place in the Pac-12, still nowhere near enough to get a first-round bye in the conference tournament. The outcome was never in doubt, but Haase was concerned about Stanford's mental approach.
Eubanks and Travis were both hit with technical fouls after a heated exchange in the second half. Although no punches were thrown, Eubanks suffered a bloody nose during the incident and had to be treated near the Beavers' bench.
"We're trying to go at each other as hard as possible so of course there's different plays where a lot of contact happens," Travis said. "I like that. That's how competitors act and we just moved on from it. Unfortunately they called a technical on both of us. I'd like to see us play on in that sense."
Oregon State: Plays at California on Friday night.
Stanford: Hosts No. 6 Oregon on Saturday in the final regular season home at Maples Pavilion this year. The Ducks beat the Cardinal 69-52 on Jan. 21.