Cal Bears basketball podcast with Michael and Morris: Cal needs to figure out UCLA and USC

photo by bruinnation.com: The UCLA Bruins Moses Brown throws down as Cal Bears defender Justice Sueing could just watch during Saturday night’s game at Pauley Pavilion

On the Cal Bears basketball podcast with Morris and Michael:

We thought we’d have some good news to talk about regarding the down Pac-12 conference with two of the more down teams in that conference USC and UCLA. One of them, the UCLA Bruins, started to turn it around before Cal got to town. UCLA fired head coach Steve Alford, and all of sudden, the Bruins have become unstoppable.

UCLA turned it around immediately. They came off those four losses. UCLA lost to Liberty in a 30 point blowout loss. There was Ohio State they played Stanford and they all beat up on Cal. The Bears got 92 points against Stanford and the Bruins. No matter what they did in this last game, they just couldn’t get past UCLA.

Morris and Michael do the Cal Bears podcasts every week podcast at http://www.sportsradioservice.com

 

Trojans hand Cardinal second Pac-12 setback 77-66

Photo credit: @StanfordMBB

By Daniel Dullum
Sports Radio Service
Sunday, January 6, 2019

Southern California earned its fourth consecutive men’s basketball win Sunday, knocking off Stanford 77-66 at Galen Center in Los Angeles.

Nick Rakocevic led the Trojans (9-6 overall, 2-0 Pac-12) with 23 points, with Bennie Boatwright adding 22. USC won its first two conference games of the season for the first time since 2010.

Rakocevic also grabbed 10 rebounds, giving him his seventh double-double of the season. Rakocevic and Boatwright combined for 45 points, 17 rebounds, three assists, three blocks, two steals and only two turnovers.

The Cardinal (7-7, 0-2), meanwhile, have lost three of their last four contests.

Cormac Ryan led Stanford with 18 points — all on 3-pointers he hit in the second half. Daejon Davis and KZ Okpala contributed 14 and 12 points, respectively, for the Cardinal.

The Trojans jumped to a 13-point run to open the game and led until Okpala drained a 3-pointer with 12:45 remaining, giving Stanford a 49-46 lead. Southern Cal later pulled away with an 11-0 run, taking a 68-55 lead with 2:22 to play.

The Cardinal return home Wednesday to host Arizona. Tipoff set for 8:00 pm.

Cal Bears basketball podcast with Morris Phillips: Cal loses to Seattle, so big preparations to take on USC on Thursday

Photo credit: @CalMBBall

On the Cal Bears basketball podcast with Morris:

#1 The Cal Bears had a 18-point deficit on Saturday against the Seattle Redhawks (12-3) and rallied, but just couldn’t get the win.

#2 It was stated for Cal, the loss marks one of the darkest days for the Bears. Why is that?

#3 Bears head coach Wyking Jones said that he has to do a better job preparing the team from now on. Morris works he tells us what steps Jones has to take to get ready for a game.

#4 Seattle helped top the Bears with Morgan Means’ 24 points and Myles Carter’s 26 points. Once you have two players shooting in the 20s, that could do a lot of damage to your defense.

#5 The Bears host the UCLA Bruins for a Thursday night thriller to open the Pac 12

Morris does the Cal Bears podcasts each Monday at http://www.sportsradioservice.com

Stanford squeezes past Long Beach State 93-86

gostanford.com photo: Stanford Cardinal Josh Sharma goes up for the throwdown against the Long Beach Matadors at Maples Pavilion on Saturday night

by Joey Friedman

PALO ALTO — Coming off a loss to an outstanding San Francisco Dons team on the road, Stanford (now 7-5 on the season) returned to Maples Pavilion for their final game of the 2018 calendar year and their final game of the non-conference schedule against Long Beach State (now 5-10 on the season). Star freshman guard Cormac Ryan remained out for the third consecutive game with an ankle injury, giving freshman Jaiden Delaire his first career start in the win. Stanford was successful in avenging last year’s road loss to the Long Beach State 49ers by the score of 93-86.

The game remained tight throughout the first half as copious turnover and fouls committed by both teams stunted any runs. The Cardinal and The Beach exchanged small advantages with Josh Sharma and KZ Okpala leading the team with 9 and 8 points in the half, respectively. Sharma also collected 10 rebounds in the first half, setting a career record. Stanford would take a 37-36 lead to halftime.

Long Beach State’s lead with the score 45-43 was their last of the night as Stanford caught fire and, on the back of a pair of Oscar da Silva 3-pointers, went on a 13-1 run, which put the score at 56-46 with less than 14 minutes left in the game.

The Beach didn’t go quietly, however. Stanford’s free throw shooting down the stretch allowed for the 49ers to crawl back to within two points with under a minute to go. Bryan Alberts, who finished with 22 points (6-13 from beyond the arc), nailed a pair of 3s while Temidayo Yussuf, who finished with 13 points (5-7 from the field), added 6 points of his own in the closing minutes to narrow the gap. Towards the end of the game, Stanford shot 5-19 from the charity stripe.

Down by 3 and with a chance to tie the game with under 10 seconds left in the game, Long Beach State head coach Don Monson tried to call a timeout to presumably set up a play for his team on offense but was unsuccessful at getting the referees’ attention. Subsequently, Long Beach State threw up a poor, air-balled shot on their final possession. Monson was understandably irate with the referees which drew a pair of technical fouls and an ejection from the court. Stanford padded their lead in the closing seconds with the fouls shots.

Josh Sharma finished the game for the Cardinal with his first career double-double. He set career-highs in both points and rebounds, blowing his previous career highs out of the water. He finished with 23 points and 18 rebounds.

Daejon Davis, who had 17 points and 5 assists for the Cardinal, left the game with an apparent ankle injury with about seven minutes left in the game. Head coach Jerod Hasse said he does not know the extent of the injury.

KZ Okpala and Jaiden Delaire each had 20 points and 10 points, respectively, in the win.

What’s next?
Stanford will open Pac-12 Conference play with the LA schools as the Card head south for games at UCLA on January 3rd and at USC on January 6th.

Long Beach State opens Big West Conference play at home against UC Davis after they face Bethesda at home on January 5th.

Cal Bears Football podcast with Morris Phillips: Cal, after surprise comeback at USC, gets set to host Stanford for the Big Game Saturday

Photo credit: @CalFootball

On the Cal Bears Football podcast with Morris:

#1 A miracle comeback for the Cal Bears (6-4) Saturday at USC (5-5) for a 15-14 win, snapping a 14-game losing streak to USC at the Los Angeles Coliseum.

#2 Cal head coach Justin Wilcox said it’s great to be bowl eligible.

#3 The Bears were hibernating in the first half of Saturday’s game at USC but started to make their comeback in the third quarter and Traveon Beck scored Cal’s second touchdown for the game winner.

#4 USC had a 14-0 lead, but the Bears roared back. Cal got their first touchdown in the third quarter and took a one-point lead 15-14.

#5 The Bears will face Stanford (6-4) and Colorado (5-5) for their next two games. The Big Game is this Saturday at Cal, which it could turn out to be one of the season’s best.

Morris does the Cal Bears podcasts each Monday at http://www.sportsradioservice.com

All About The Coaching: Cal’s improbable 15-14 upset win over USC rooted in strategy and adjustments

By Morris Phillips

How to end a 14-game losing streak in 60 easy steps. If it sounds complicated, that’s because it is.

What isn’t complicated is this: Normally stoic Cal head coach Justin Wilcox richly deserved to cut it all the way loose with his emphatic gesturing as his Bears put the finishing touches on their improbable comeback win at USC Saturday night.

And USC coach Clay Helton might want to skip listening to sports radio on his lengthier than usual drive home after the game.

Wilcox’s Bears ended their 14-game losing streak to USC at the Los Angeles Coliseum with a performance that was literally all over the place. But regardless of the methods, Wilcox predicted it, scripted it and willed it, giving creedence to his mandate that his football team win at least six games this season and go bowling for the first time since 2015.

“I appreciate what it means to be bowl-eligible. It’s hard to win in this conference and it’s hard to win at USC,” Wilcox said. “It’s a big deal for all the Cal Bears out there.”

To make it happen, Cal played dead in the first half, came roaring back into the game in the third quarter, and stay focused–if not productive–to seal the deal in the fourth.

Firstly, kick returner Ashtyn Davis flubbed the opening kickoff, briefly losing the ball, only to recover it at the three-yard line with a knee on the turf where he was ruled down. On the first play from scrimmage, Patrick Laird was dropped after a 2-yard gain, and Chase Garbers threw a pair of incomplete passes, forcing Cal to punt.

Inauspicious start for the Bears? Yes. It would continue.

Confident that it could key on Laird, and stop the Cal receivers in their tracks, the Trojans defense shined in the first half, limiting the Bears to three first downs and 60 yards in total offense. Meanwhile, USC would recover from failing to capitalize on excellent field position afforded by Cal’s poor first position. After seeing a fake field goal turned pass to the kicker blow up in playcaller Helton’s face, the Trojans stayed patient, scoring touchdowns on two of their four second quarter possessions to lead 14-0 at the half.

Helton, who assumed play-calling duties from offensive coordinator Tee Martin following back-to-back losses in the final two games in October, dialed up a pair of touchdowns that overcame the absences of reveiver Michael Pittman Jr. and running back Stephen Carr. With quarterback J.T. Daniels back from missing a game due to a concussion, the Trojans functioned admirally. After Daniels 23-yard pass to Tyler Vaughns for a touchdown, USC led 14-0 with more than half of the second quarter to go.

But things would change dramatically in the third quarter when a snap over Daniels’ head would result in a safety with Aca’Cedric Ware recovering the ball in the end zone with a pair of Cal defenders in proximity for a possible touchdown. The Bears trailed 14-2 at that point.

But superior field position would set up Cal’s first touchdown, and Traveon Beck’s interception would set up Cal’s second touchdown. After Garbers scampered in from five yards out, the Bears led 15-14 with time remaining in the third.

Over Cal’s next three possessions–all in the fourth quarter–Cal would run just 12 plays and gain 36 yards, jeopardizing their lightning rally in the third. But Cal’s defense made it work, coming up with a pair of sacks and timely pass breakups to keep the Trojans sinking in mud. As soon as USC reached midfield and approaching position for a lead-changing field goal try, Evan Weaver would come up with a sack of Daniels to force a punt.

Weaver would record a game-best 12 tackles and a second sack on USC’s previous possession.

With Cal needing first downs to bleed out the clock, they did just that, running 10 plays that evaporated the game’s final 4:50, and setting off a wild celebration on the Cal sideline while the majority of the Coliseum fell silent.

The Bears improved to 6-4 with games at home against Stanford and Colorado remaining that could turn Cal’s season from encouraging to extraordinary.

Meanwhile, the Trojans again blew a lead, falling to 5-5, and increasing the chatter across Southern California that Helton should be fired. If the Trojans can’t beat UCLA next week and/or Notre Dame after Thanksgiving, the rumblings will grow even louder.

Three takeaways from Stanford vs. USC

Photo credit: @StanfordFball

By: Ana Kieu

The Stanford Cardinal downed the USC Trojans by a final score of 17-3 at Stanford Stadium on Saturday night. The majority of folks believed that these two teams would’ve fought each other until the very end, but that wasn’t the case, as Stanford took an early lead and never looked back. USC’s lone score came in the middle of the third quarter on Chase McGrath’s 35-yard field goal to reduce the deficit to 14-3, but the Trojans were unable to mount a comeback on the road.

With the win, the Cardinal climbed its way back to No. 9 in this week’s AP Top 25 poll. Not only that, freshman offensive center Branson Bragg tweeted a shoutout to his current team and wrote, “I chose the right place to spend the next 4-5 years of my life.” In case you need a refresher, Bragg is a four-star center from Texas who committed to Stanford this summer. The Cardinal also chose the right center to be a great blocker up front.

Here are three takeaways from Stanford vs. USC. As always, feel free to share your thoughts in the comments section. Thanks for reading.

3. The early bird gets the worm
As I’ve mentioned in the introduction, Stanford took an early lead and never looked back.

Prior to the game, @gostanfordnotes tweeted that Stanford has won 18 of its last 21 games when scoring first. After the game, @gostanfordnotes tweeted that Stanford has won 19 of its last 22 games when scoring first. Do you see a pattern here?

Trojans quarterback JT Daniels was arguably the more talented quarterback coming into Saturday’s game, but the Cardinal tormented Daniels for most of the night. It’s obvious that Daniels needs help from the his backfield.

This was the first time the Cardinal held the Trojans under 10 points since 1992 when the Cardinal prevailed over the No. 11 Trojans in a 23-9 rout under head coach Bill Walsh.

2. The Bryce Love factor
Cardinal running back Bryce Love had himself a night with 136 rushing yards and 1 touchdown–a 6-yard rushing touchdown–that gave his team a 7-0 lead midway through the first quarter to kick off the rivalry matchup. Love also averaged more than 6 yards per carry versus the Trojans.

Love, a front-runner in the Heisman Trophy race, bounced back after a dismal start in the Cardinal’s season opener against the San Diego State Aztecs. Love rushed for just 29 yards in the opener.

Love may not be the ideal size as he stands at 5-foot-11 and weighs 202 lbs, but his explosiveness and visions likely will make him one of the first-round picks in the 2019 NFL Draft.

1. The dominant Cardinal defense
The Cardinal defense stifled the Trojans in the 17-3 rout on Saturday. Every time the Trojans terrorized, the Cardinal defense responded in a big way. Moreover, the Cardinal defense to less than three points in this series since a 13-0 shutout at the Coliseum in 1941.

If you need a refresher, you catch watch the video below.

The Cardinal will host the UC Davis Aggies on Saturday, September 15 at 11:00 am PDT on Pac-12 Network.

Stanford routed USC 17-3 at Stanford Stadium on Saturday night

Photo credit: @StanfordFball

By: Ana Kieu

STANFORD, Calif. — The No. 10 Stanford Cardinal invited the No. 17 USC Trojans to Stanford Stadium for a Pac-12 showdown on Saturday night. The two teams were certainly ready to go head-to-head, but only one team managed to prevail in the end.

Like most other rivalries, the Stanford vs. USC rivalry is quite a ferocious battle. Seven of the past 12 meetings have been decided by eight points or less. Moreover, San Francisco 49ers cornerback Richard Sherman showed some love to his alma mater, Stanford University, on Twitter. Sherman is a Compton, Calif. native who played college football at Stanford from 2006-2010. Sherman also graduated with a degree in communications in 2010.

USC won the coin toss and deferred for the second half. The Trojans kicked the ball to start the first half.

The Cardinal got on the board first, thanks to Bryce Love’s 6-yard rushing touchdown. Jet Toner’s kick for the extra point was good. Stanford took a 7-0 lead at the 10:26 mark of the first quarter.

The Cardinal led the Trojans 7-0 after the first quarter.

Bobby Okereke was a bad man during the second quarter. Okereke helped the Cardinal’s defense spin around and forced a punt. Also, Trenton Irwin made his third catch of the night–the 100th of his career–and kept doing his thing.

Things got interesting late in the second quarter. K.J. Costello threw a pass to Colby Parkinson, who scored what looked like a 9-yard passing touchdown. The Trojans challenged the Cardinal’s play, but the call on the field stood. Toner kicked in the extra point. Stanford took a 14-0 lead with just 34 seconds left in the quarter.

The Cardinal led the Trojans 14-0 at the end of the first half. This was the first time Stanford pitched a first half shutout since Aug. 26, 2017 against Rice in Sydney, Australia. Moreover, Stanford allowed just 82 combined passing yards in the first half this season.

The Trojans finally got on the board early in the second half. Chase McGrath kicked in a 35-yard field goal to reduce the Cardinal’s lead to 14-3 at the 11:24 mark of the third quarter. Stanford threatened USC in the redzone prior to that eye-opening play.

Thanks to Toner’s 30-yard field goal, Stanford extended its lead to 17-3 with 6:04 left in the quarter.

The Cardinal’s strong safety, Ben Edwards, went down due to an apparent trip, but managed to get up off the ground. The game resumed its regular action after a delay that lasted for a couple of minutes.

The Cardinal defeated the Trojans by a final score of 17-3. Stanford has now won 19 of its last 22 games when scoring first. In addition, Stanford improved to 15-5 in games in which Love found the end zone.

Notes
On the Cardinal’s offensive line, A.T. Hall made his 27th career start and Nate Herbig made his 21st career start.

Red shirts were handed out to all fans in attendance, courtesy of Stanford Medicine.

Kailee Wong served as the Cardinal’s honorary captain for #BeatSC week. Wong was inducted into the Stanford Athletics Hall of Fame Friday night.

JJ Arcega-Whiteside, the third-best receiving game in Cardinal history, shared his Stanford story for the masses on Labor Day.

Up Next 
The Cardinal host the UC Davis Aggies on Saturday, September 15 at 11:00 am PDT on the Pac-12 Network.

Stanford to host USC for Pac-12 showdown on Saturday

Photo credit: @StanfordFball

By: Ana Kieu

The Stanford Cardinal look to continue their dominance on home field after last Saturday’s 31-10 rout of the San Diego State Aztecs at Stanford Stadium. SDSU has a chance versus Sacramento State this Saturday, but let’s focus on the Cardinal’s upcoming game versus USC, who is currently ranked No. 17. Stanford, on the other hand, is currently ranked No. 10. That being said, Stanford looks like they got the upper hand, but this is college football, and anything could happen.

It’s #BeatUSC week in the Palo Alto area, and the Cardinal appear to be confident coming into Saturday’s home game. A couple of things happened on the Stanford campus this Monday. First, head coach David Shaw, defensive end Dylan Jackson, and wide receiver JJ Arcega-Whiteside held a press conference to address the media members on Stanford’s top-25 matchup with rival USC. Secondly, Arcega-Whiteside earned the Pac-12 Player of the Week with 3 touchdowns, 6 catches, and 226 yards. It was a well-deserved honor for Arcega-Whiteside, who’s on fire (or en fuego) as a Spanish-born WR with a 34-inch vertical leap along with hands that can catch passes for touchdowns.

Arcega-Whiteside told GoStanford.com, “As a receiver, that’s what you want, all you can ask for.”

Let’s not forget that running back Bryce Love had a 75-yard touchdown against USC at the Coliseum last year. I don’t know if Love will repeat that play, but it’s likely that he’ll do something on the field.

Since the Pac-12 Network is at Stanford all this week for Saturday’s The Pregame, so they decided to let placekicker Jet Toner take over their Snapchat @pac12conference. So if you’re on Snapchat, give the Pac-12 a follow if you haven’t already done so.

The Cardinal host the Trojans on Saturday at 5:30 pm PDT on FOX.

USC holds off late charge from Cardinal in 69-64 victory; Cardinal drop their second straight game

By Daniel Dullum
Sports Radio Service
Wednesday, January 24, 2018

photo by usctrojans.com: USC Trojans Jonah Matthews leads the Trojans in scoring on Wednesday night at the Galen Center in Los Angeles over the visiting Stanford Cardinal

Southern California won its fifth men’s basketball game in a row Wednesday at Galen Center in Los Angeles, squeaking out a 69-64 Pac-12 victory over Stanford.

Jonah Mathews scored 18 points and Chimezie Metu added 12 points and 10 rebounds, as the Trojans (16-6 overall, 7-2 Pac-12) are off to their best start in league play since 2002.

The win also puts the Trojans into a tie for first place in the Pac-12 with idle Arizona (6-1), who they lead by percentage points going into Thursday’s games.

Stanford had a chance to tie the game in the final four seconds when Daejon Davis missed a 3-point attempt. USC, which has won 10 of its last 12, closed out the game with an Elijah Stewart dunk.

Michael Humphrey made a 3-pointer and Davis had made a pair of free throws late to pull the Cardinal to within 67-64.

The Cardinal (11-10, 5-3) were led by Reid Travis, who scored 16 points. Michael Humphery and Dorian Pickens scored 14 apiece for Stanford.

Stanford trailed 41-26 at halftime, but put together a 15-7 run to open the second half, cutting the Trojans’ lead to 48-41. USC led the entire game, and were up by 10 points with 5:12 to play.

Southern California held the Cardinal to 36 percent shooting in the first half, and forced Stanford into 16 turnovers – which is what the Trojans are averaging this season. The Cardinal shot 44 percent for the game.

Up Next: Stanford’s Los Angeles trip concludes on Saturday, when the Cardinal visit UCLA.