Tuesday, September 11, 2007

#49 CALIFORNIA BEARS


I know other sites are doing this, but I decided to breakdown the top 50 college basketball teams for this coming season. Today:

#49 CALIFORNIA BEARS

Last Season: 16-17 (6-12 in conference), No Postseason
Key Losses: G Ayinde Ubaka (13.7 ppg, 4.3 apg), G Omar Wilkes (9.9 ppg)
Key Adds: F Jamal Boykin (transfer), F Omondi Amoke (top 300), G Nikola Knezevic

BACKCOURT:
It won't be easy to replace team-leader Ubaka, as well as Wilkes, and this is the area that will make or break the season for the Bears.

Lightning quick guard Jerome Randle (6.5ppg/2.8 apg) is first in line to replace Ubaka as the point man for coach Ben Braun, although he will have competition from Serbian Nikola Knezevic, who returns after a medical redshirt season.

Shooting guard will likely be a battle between sophomore Patrick Christopher and Theo Robertson, although Robertson spent a lot of time in the post last season, and could also slide to small forward.


FRONTCOURT:

The strength of the Bears got stonger when center DeVon Hardin pulled out of the NBA draft, despite being a likely first rounder. Although Hardin's stats aren't mind-numbingly great (10.7ppg/8.4 rpg), his defense (1.9 blocks) and overall affect on the team can't be overstated. Before he got hurt last season, the Bears were 11-3, after they were 8-14.

Joining the 6-11 Hardin downlow will be last year's leading scorer, 6-10 Ryan Anderson (16.3 ppg). Anderson had no problems scoring last year, with or without Hardin, so expect that one-two punch to give teams fits this year. Depth will come from top 300 freshman Omondi Amoke, an explosive 6-7 wing player, and former Duke transfer Jamal Boykin, who was a four-star recruit and 20th ranked PF in 2005.

OVERALL:

The Bears are talented and have some star power. In a conference like the Big Ten, they might be able to do some damage. However, the Pac Ten is loaded this year, and it's likely the Bears will struggle in conference. A weak non-conference schedule won't help, and it looks like the NIT for Cal.

2 comments:

Laser said...

Where do you have the gophers listed?

WWWWWW said...

#1 in my heart