Boy it was hard to get going this morning. Think slow starts are rubbing off? Anyway, we’re up, we’re going and we’ve got links for you. Read on.
• Washington State: As I tried to drag my sorry rear-end out of bed this morning, I thought of poor Bud Nameck. The Cougars’ radio voice is now doing the morning news show on KXLY radio, which entails getting up before the street lights go off. Long before. So he has to drive back to Spokane after the game, get a couple hours sleep, then get downtown for his show. If Bud misspeaks once or twice this morning, give him some slack. … Before we get to the links and some more quotes, I was asked my opinion of the officiating last night. I’m not going to drawn into any big debate because I really didn’t think it was any different – with one small caveat – than a usual conference game. The one caveat: Two members of the crew were in more of a let-them-play state of mind, while one seemed quicker on the whistle. That seemed to cause some confusion among the players at times. Usually, all three members of a crew are on the same page. … Now on to the links. … We had our unedited version of the story online last night and in the paper today. … The Times’ Steve Kelley is in the neighborhood because he’s covering the skating in Spokane this weekend, so he drove down U.S. 195 to catch the Cougars. He had this column. … Freelancer Howie Stalwick filed this piece in the News Tribune and other papers. … From the Cal perspective, there is this story in the San Francisco Chronicle and Jeff Faraudo’s coverage in the Mercury News and other Bay Area papers. … Some quick WSU football news. Kevin Norrell has left school, citing family considerations. We had more here while Howie had this piece.
• Now on to the comments …
WSU coach Ken Bone on Jerome Randle’s career-high performance: “Randle’s a great player, there’s a reason why he played 40 minutes, he’s valuable on the court. He’s tough, he was being guarded by kids in their first or second year in the Pac-10.”
Bone on the start: “It’s always difficult to get over the hump, we just set the tone for ourselves, they set the tone for themselves. It was win or lose in those first minutes.”
Nik Koprivica on the first few minutes: “I think we got off to a bad start. They are a good team. … We have to start our game much better.”
Klay Thompson’s look at the start: “We didn’t really come out focused with energy as we should have. They were hitting every open shot.”
Cal coach Mike Montgomery on the start: “We shot well early; we caught them off guard on the break and got off to a quick lead. We need to make the adjustments. Tonight we went small, used different screens.”
On the WSU comeback: “The intensity turned in the second half, we let them catch up and WSU became the aggressor. WSU played well, Thames and Moore played well. We were on our heels on defense, something to work on.”
Cal’s Patrick Christopher on the game: “As a team, we didn’t miss. Our defense wasn’t as great. … Tonight we mixed it up with our guarding. We are always trying to play a complete game. Tonight we made the shots and they didn’t. that’s the game of basketball. We were getting the key stops.”
• Around the Pac-10: Ah, the Huskies on the road, Huskies at home. Little different, huh? Last night, the homestanding Dawgs routed Stanford with stifling defense, efficient offense and the play of Justin Holiday. The Cardinal never could figure out what hit them. We know. It was Hec Ed. … Ah, the Pac-10. Oregon State is on a two-game winning streak after rallying from an 11-point deficit to stop Arizona. The Wildcats were stunned when Lathen Wallace hit a 3-pointer with .9 seconds left, giving OSU a 67-64 win. … ASU’s last visit to Mac Court is a joyous one, with a 76-57 victory. The Ducks are reeling again. Which means they will win Saturday, right? But wait. Arizona is reeling too. So who wins? … Some fun with the conference’s results – and other things – from Jon Wilner of the San Jose Mercury News.
• That’s it for this morning. We’ll be back as events warrant. Until then …