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Cal Basketball

Cal Wraps Season at Oregon State

March 6, 2020

And just like that, the college hoops season is on its final weekend of the regular season. Our Cal Golden Bears have a chance to sweep the Oregon State Beavers (16-13, 6-11) and finish the season in sole possession of eighth place in the conference.

Since Cal beat Oregon State in Berkeley on February 1, Oregon State has gone 3-4 with wins over Oregon, Utah, and Stanford. During that time, the Beavers went 3-1 at home and 0-3 on the road. OSU’s one home loss since playing Cal was a 21-point loss to the Buffaloes.

Tres Tinkle continues to lead the Beavers, averaging 18.2 points and seven rebounds a game. In the Bears’ 69-67 win over Oregon State at Haas Pavilion in Berkeley, Tinkle was right on his averages at 19 points and seven rebounds. Junior guard Ethan Thompson is averaging 15.1 points, 4.3 rebounds, and 4.5 assists per game. And senior seven-foot center Kylor Kelley is the other OSU player averaging double-digit scoring at 10.8 points per game. He’s also averaging 3.5 blocks per game.

Stat Cal Oregon State
Adj. Eff. 101.8 (187) 101.8 (170)
Avg. Poss. Length 19.3 (334) 17.9 (254)
Eff. FG% 46.9% (295) 49.3% (166)
TO% 19.0% (195) 18.1% (223)
Off. Reb. % 25.6% (250) 28.8% (215)
FTA/FGA 35.5 (98) 30.6 (138)
3P% 34.2% (127) 34.4% (244)
2P% 45.2% (326) 48.0% (117)
FT% 73.2% (96) 73.3% (299)
Block% 9.5% (251) 13.8% (15)
Steal% 7.1% (16) 8.9% (175)
Non-Stl TO% 11.9% (321) 9.2% (244)

This is probably one of the most interesting pieces of this game. Oregon State has the least efficient and worst defense in the Pac-12 according to KenPom’s metrics. And Cal has one of the worst and least efficient offenses (it’s a tossup between Cal and Wazzu), according to KenPom, especially on the road. Cal was only able to put up 69 points against the Beavers at Haas Pavilion. But the Bears have also looked much better on offense as of late.

On defense, the only thing Oregon State does well is block shots, which it does really well (13.8% block rate, 15th in the country). This has helped contribute to Oregon State’s decent two-point defense. Opponents are averaging just 48% from inside the arch against the Beavers, which puts them at 117th in the country. 

But the Beavers haven’t done a good job at guarding three-point shots, creating turnovers, or keeping teams off the offensive glass.

Stat Oregon State Cal
Adj. Eff. 110.5 (40) 101.3 (156)
Avg. Poss. Length 18.4 (285) 17.6 (198)
Eff. FG% 51.3% (98) 50.2% (214)
TO% 17.6% (78) 17.5% (261)
Off. Reb. % 26.8% (216) 27.1% (136)
FTA/FGA 39.0% (40) 37.0 (277)
3P% 32.0% (232) 36.0% (304)
2P% 53.0% (45) 47.8% 107)
FT% 75.1% (49) 73.7% (312)
Block% 8.8% (163) 7.2% (251)
Steal% 8.5% (107) 6.0% (350)
Non-Stl TO% 9.1% (102) 11.5% (38)

Oregon State, does, however, have an efficient offense, ranked 40th in the country in KenPom’s metrics. In particular, the Beavers make two-point shots, get to the free-throw line at a high rate, and knockdown their free-throws. When the teams met in Berkeley, the Beavers went 24-of-30 from the free-throw line, which kept them in the game.

Keys to the Game

Fouls and free-throws. They almost led to Oregon State squeaking out a win in Berkeley. Cal committed just 18 fouls in that game, but the Beavers shot 30 free-throws. That’s a lot of shooting fouls and a lot of driving and attacking by the Beavers. Oregon State ranks 34th in the country of the percentage of points coming from the foul line (22.2%). If OSU is driving, getting contact, and getting to the line, it could be a tough game for Cal to win.

On the other hand, Cal’s offense has been at its best when guys like Matt Bradley and Paris Austin are doing similar downhill driving and attacking at getting to the line.

Knockdown outside shots. It’s such a huge way to build confidence early and build a gap over a home team. We saw Cal do just that at Washington State and the Cougars were never able to close. To be sure, OSU doesn’t have an offense that can stagnate like Wazzu’s. But they also don’t have a defense as good as Wazzu’s. If Bradley, Grant Anticevich, and Kareem South all see some outside shots go down early, it could really help build a lead that OSU has troubles catching up to.

Matt Bradley plus another one (or preferably two). One thing has been for sure this season. Cal is at its best when Bradley is playing well and is getting some help from a couple others. Again, it doesn’t matter who. When these teams met in Berkeley it was Andre Kelly and Paris Austin. That’ll do. Or South and Anticevich. Doesn’t matter. Cal just needs a couple dudes besides Bradley to score.

Minimize OSU’s contributors. In that same vein, Cal needs to minimize the impact of guys like Thompson and Kelley. They did just that in Berkeley, holding Thompson and Kelley to 15 combined points. Junior wing Alfred Hollins added 14 to Tinkle’s 19, but it clearly wasn’t enough. Similar to Cal, OSU needs contributions from others besides Tinkle. Cal needs to minimize that.

KenPom says … 71-63, Oregon State (win-chance 79%)

From a conference standings standpoint, Cal doesn’t really have anything to lose this game. The Bears are likely to be eighth or ninth in the Pac-12 tournament seeding. But winning is better than losing and it would sure help the confidence heading into the conference tournament in Vegas next week. So might as well win it.

Discussion from...

Cal Wraps Season at Oregon State

3,213 Views | 4 Replies | Last: 2 yr ago by HoopDreams
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We are directly above them in standings, so this head to head Game determines if we finish in sole 8th place or tied for 8th
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It is amazing how after a few years of horrendous coaching that this state of affairs emotionally feels like winning the Blue Ribbon. Plus we now have a team, to a man, that is a pleasure and honor to root for. A Band of Brothers and Sturdy Golden Bears.
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We might have a chance today. Certainly Osu has less talent and worse coaching than Oregon . That said, I do not predict a win. The road and Senior day will do us in.

Still hoping for a rematch with Stanford in thePac 12 tourney.

Utah now leading Colorado. 47-46 12 min left second half.
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3 teams 1/2 game behind us

if we win, we earn 8th by our selves

if we lose, we at least tie for 8th with OSU, and it depends on how utah and WSU do today whether they also tie for 8th with us
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