Jan. 27, 2012
Stanford Cardinal (15-5, 5-3 Pac-12)
California Golden Bears (16-5, 6-2 Pac-12)
Date: Sunday, Jan. 29, 2012 5:30 p.m.
Site: Haas Pavilion (11,877) Berkeley, CA
Series History: California leads 141-113
Last Meeting: California 74, Stanford 55 (Mar. 5, 2011)
Radio: KNBR 1050 AM (PBP: John Platz, Analyst: Drew Shiller)
KZSU 90.1 FM (PBP: Lucas Prokopiak, Analyst: Eli Katz)
TV: FSN (PBP: Gus Johnson, Analyst: Steve Kerr)
The Opening Tip
The first half of conference play comes to a close this weekend, with Stanford (15-5, 5-3 Pac-12) traveling to Berkeley for a Sunday night clash against rival California (16-5, 6-2 Pac-12). The top six teams in the Pac-12 are separated by one game in the loss column.
Sunday's game can be heard live on KNBR 1050 AM and Stanford's official athletics website, www.gostanford.com, featuring the chemistry-rich tandem of John Platz (play-by-play) and Drew Shiller (analyst). KZSU 90.1 FM provides coverage with Lucas Prokopiak (play-by-play) and Eli Katz (analyst). The contest will be televised nationally on FSN, with Gus Johnson (play-by-play) and Steve Kerr (analyst) calling the action.
Stanford returns to Maples Pavilion next week to host the Arizona schools. Up first is a Feb. 2 tilt against Arizona State, representing Stanford's first home game since Jan. 12.
California (16-5, 6-2 Pac-12) enters the week with 16 victories, the most of any Pac-12 team. The Golden Bears also boast a league-best RPI of No. 35 ... California had a chance to extend its lead in the Pac-12 but suffered a 77-75 defeat at Washington State over the weekend. The Golden Bears, who have yet to drop back-to-back games this year, have won four of their last five overall ... The olden Bears were picked to finish second in this year's Pac-12 preseason media poll, receiving 13 first-place votes. UCLA earned 14 first-place votes as the favorite ... Pac-12 teams have performed well at home this year overall, but none better than Cal ... The Golden Bears are 13-0 at Haas Pavilion and 4-0 in conference play ... California is averaging 72.4 points per game while allowing only 60.2. The Golden Bears lead the conference in free throw percentage (74.8) and three-point FG percentage (40.1) ... Keep an eye on: Allen Crabbe (15.7 ppg, 6.1 rpg, 82.9 percent free throws, team-best 57 three-pointers), Jorge Gutierrez (14.3 ppg, 5.0 rpg, 90 assists, 26 steals) and Harper Kamp (9.4 ppg, 4.9 rpg, 53.7 percent FG).
Stanford All-Time vs. California
In a series that dates back to the 1913-14 campaign, California owns a 141-113 edge. The Golden Bears have won four of the last five matchups overall, with Stanford's only victory coming in the form of an 82-68 win last January in the Pac-10 opener for both teams. Stanford has dropped three in a row at Haas Pavilion, searching for its first road win in the series since an 82-77 victory on Jan. 26, 2008. The Cardinal has not lost four straight games in Berkeley since a five-year drought from 1968-1972.
Who To Watch Against California
Dwight Powell enjoyed the best game of his career against California, scoring a career-high 20 points in the first meeting between the schools last year. Powell did everything but sell popcorn in that game, making 7-11 from the field, 6-7 from the foul line and grabbing seven rebounds in 28 minutes. Jack Trotter has averaged 6.0 points over four games while shooting 11-18 from the field. Meanwhile, Josh Owens has yet to make his presence felt against Cal, scoring 15 points on 7-17 shooting with 11 rebounds overall in five career meetings.
Through 20 Games...
Stanford's 15-5 record signals the program's best 20-game start since a 17-3 stretch four years ago. In fact, the 15 victories are the third-most through 20 games over the last 10 seasons.
Owens A Dependable Post Option
Josh Owens is enjoying the best season of his career, leading Stanford in both scoring (13.1 ppg) and rebounding (6.3 rpg) while starting all 20 games. An active player on both ends of the floor, Owens has also racked up 22 steals, which rank second on the team. In addition to scoring in double figures 17 times, Owens has led Stanford in scoring on nine occasions. Perhaps most impressive, Owens' 60.9 percent field goal percentage (109-179) ranks eighth-best in the nation.
Randle Making An Impact In Rookie Season
Through the first two months of the year, freshman Chasson Randle was leading Stanford in minutes played. However, he now ranks second (30.1) to Aaron Bright (30.2) in that category. Randle is bidding to become the first freshman to lead Stanford in minutes played since Casey Jacobsen's 28.5 average during the 1999-2000 campaign. The last freshman to average at least 30.0 minutes played in a season was Brevin Knight at 32.7 in 1993-94. Meanwhile, Randle is averaging 12.1 points and 3.2 rebounds per game while leading the Cardinal in steals (23).