Rabb, Mullins combine for 40 in Cal's win over Arizona State


Rabb, Mullins combine for 40 in Cal's win over Arizona State


BERKELEY -- Grant Mullins scored a career-high 20 points to lead four players in double figures and California pulled away late in the second half to beat Arizona State 81-65 on Sunday night.

Ivan Rabb had 20 points, 15 rebounds and five assists for his sixth double-double of the season despite being in foul trouble. Jabari Bird added 16 points and Sam Singer scored 10 to help the Golden Bears (10-4, 1-1 Pac-12) snap a two-game losing streak.

Rabb was on the bench with his fourth foul when California made its game-changing run.

The Bears trailed 61-60 before Singer's free throw tied it with 5:45 left. Bird followed with a one-handed dunk and Kingsley Okoroh added his own emphatic dunk and California made its final eight shots while outscoring Arizona State 21-4 down the stretch.

Obinna Oleka had 18 points and five rebounds while Tra Holder scored 14 points for the Sun Devils (8-7, 1-1).

Arizona State was attempting to go 2-0 in conference for only the fifth time in program history but struggled to score in the second half and was held 18 points below its season average of 83.5.

California, coming off consecutive losses to No. 12 Virginia last week and No. 18 Arizona on Friday, made 11 3-pointers - one shy of its season high while holding the Sun Devils to 7-of-24 beyond the arc.

The Bears made only eight combined 3s in their previous two games but had seven in the first half against the Sun Devils. Rabb and Mullins had two apiece while Charlie Moore's 3-pointer helped California take a 38-37 halftime lead.

Rabb notched his double-double before halftime with 16 points and 10 rebounds. He was limited to 12 minutes after the break with foul trouble, however.

Mullins, whose previous season high was 17 against UC Davis on Dec. 10, 2016, picked up the scoring slack along with Bird. Bird had nine of his points during the decisive run, including the final four to help California win for just the third time in the last eight games against Arizona State.

Arizona State: Coach Bobby Hurley's squad wasn't as efficient on offense as it had been, shooting 40 percent overall and only 29.2 percent on 3s. The Sun Devils had three one-and-one opportunities during a 15-second span midway through the second half but were held to just one field goal over the final 9:44.

California: Rabb set the tone early before fouls slowed him up and showed some range with his jumper he hadn't previously exhibited. His two 3-pointers are a career-high after he had previously only attempted two 3s all season and just four for his career.

Arizona State: Returns home to host Colorado on Thursday night.

California: The Bears go on the road for the first time since early December and play at UCLA on Thursday.

Pac-12 basketball teams near Barcelona terrorist attack safe


Pac-12 basketball teams near Barcelona terrorist attack safe

Men's basketball teams from Oregon State, Clemson and Arizona were staying at a hotel in Barcelona, Spain, near where a van drove into pedestrians on Thursday, but team officials said everyone was safe.

Spanish police have confirmed they are investigating the bloodshed in Barcelona's historic Las Ramblas district as a terror attack. The area is a popular summer tourist spot.

Tulane also was playing in Barcelona, but it was unclear if they were staying in the same hotel as the other teams.

Oregon State assistant coach Gregg Gottlieb posted to Facebook: "We are all luckily ok. Our hotel/restaurant is located right on Las Ramblas. This tragedy happened right in front of us as our team just sat down for pregame meal. Thoughts and prayers for all those that are were hurt."

The Beavers' game Thursday night was canceled. It was supposed to be the first of a five-game tour.

Clemson was scheduled to play Thursday night against a Spanish All-Star team.

"We've been in contact with our men's basketball program currently in Barcelona and the entire travel party is safe and secure. Their exhibition game for tonight has been cancelled and the team will return to Clemson as previously scheduled tomorrow morning. Our thoughts are with the people of Barcelona," the South Carolina school said in a statement.

Clemson coach Brad Brownell confirmed in a text to The Associated Press that the three teams were staying in the same hotel.

"We are fine. Thankful to be safe and together," Brownell wrote.

Tulane athletic director Troy Tannen confirmed via social media that the Green Wave players and staff were safe.

Replying to a Twitter inquiry from a Portland television about whether the team was OK, Oregon State head coach Wayne Tinkle responded: "Yes we are, happened directly in front of our hotel while we were having a team meal in the restaurant, so senseless and sad! All accounted4."

Oregon State said it has not yet determined the remaining schedule for the team, which was supposed to be on the exhibition tour until Aug. 25.

A spokesman for Arizona said the Wildcats have canceled their third and final exhibition of their tour and "are currently working on travel plans to return home."

The future of Cal athletics, or lack thereof


The future of Cal athletics, or lack thereof

Your education dollars are always at work, so it is with pride and bewilderment that we report that the University of California’s incoming class (2021, for those few who can get out in four years) marched to Memorial Stadium and formed the world’s largest human letter.
It was . . . wait for it . . . a “C.” A 7,196-person-strong “C.”
But the school, as it occasionally does, missed a golden opportunity to seize a golden opportunity. All they needed to do was have a quick whip-round, get $55,586.44 from each and every one of the captives . . . er, students, and they could have wiped out their entire athletics deficit in one night.
You see, while forming gigantic letters is always fun (or as the kids used to say when double negatives didn’t mean voting, never not fun), Cal is staring at quite possibly the bleakest future a major athletic university ever has. The athletic department, whose chief officer, Mike Williams, has just announced his intention to quit, is over $400 million in debt between construction costs, ambition, shrinking allegiance and the absence of a Phil Knight-level sugar daddy to buy the pain away.
And before you blame Williams, he inherited this indigestible planetoid from his predecessor, Sandy Barbour, who grew it from her predecessor, Steve Gladstone, and hastened it from . . . well, you get the drift. 
Cal’s been blowing through money it hasn’t been taking in for years upon years, didn’t realize the deficit-cutting benefits of the Pac-12 Network (because they largely don’t exist), and the day of reckoning looms closer and closer, especially now that new chancellor Carol Christ (no apparent relation) described the deficit as “corrosive” and has insisted that the athletic department have a balanced budget by 2020.
In short, the school may only be able to afford a lower-case “C” before too long. Maybe in comic sans.