CK Hicks/Cal Athletics
Grant Newell (pictured) and the Golden Bears will host Southern on Friday night in Berkeley.
Golden Bears drive to their first win of the season against Jaguars on Friday
BERKELEY – The California men’s basketball team is home for the third time in four games to open the 2022-23 season as it hosts Southern University Friday at 6 p.m. PT at the Haas Pavilion. The non-conference competition will be televised on the Pac-12 Network with Scott Walker and Eldridge Recasner.
Cal (0-3) is still looking for his first win of the early season after losing three games to UC Davis, Kansas State and UC San Diego, the latter of which was played last Tuesday. The Golden Bears will be looking for the No. 1 win over a winless squad from the South (0-3) completing a four-game West Coast season-opening swing at Berkeley.
- Date & Time: Friday 18 Nov | 6 p.m. PT
- Location: Berkeley, California | Haas Pavilion
- Watch: Pac-12 Network | Scott Walker (PxP) & Eldridge Recasner (Analyst)
- Listen: 810 AM & The Varsity App | Rich Cellini (PxP)
- Live Stats: StatBroadcast
- The Bears are 1-0 all-time against Southern after beating the Jaguars 82-63 on November 23, 2004 in Berkeley.
- Friday’s game is officially part of the campus round of the 2022 Emerald Coast Classic. Both Cal and Southern will travel to Niceville, Fla., next week for two games in separate brackets of the Nov. 25-26 multi-team event deny.
- Southern has already met three West Coast teams in the season opener, including UNLV, Arizona and Saint Mary’s.
- Cal has averaged 5.7 blocks per game so far this season, after averaging at least four blocks in every competition. The roster’s improved athleticism and length was highlighted by the freshman forward ND Okaforwho has fired twice in each of Cal’s first two games.
- junior guard Devin crooked is one of only seven Pac-12 players to average at least 16 points, four rebounds and three assists per game. Askew (16.3 PPG/4.3 RPG/3.0 APG) has scored Cal in every game this season, including a career-high 19 points in the opener against UC Davis.
- senior forward Kuany Kuany (11.3 PPG) has hit double digits in all three games. He had four double-digit career games early in the season.
- Cal’s backcourt was plagued by injuries as a guard in the preseason De Juan Clayton and Jared Hyder not played yet. The Bears are still without a junior guard Jalen Celestine – the team’s top returning goalscorer (7.5 PPG in 2021-22) – working his way back up to full speed after an off-season knee surgery. A timetable for Celestine’s return has not yet been set.
- The Bears are third in the Pac-12 in terms of free throw percentage with 74.1 percent. They knocked down 21 of 24 tries at the line Tuesday at UC San Diego, marking the first time they have made 21 or more free throws in a single game since playing 26 of 33 against Utah on Feb. 29. 2020
- Cal has performed well in the last two second halves against Kansas State (November 11) and UC San Diego (November 15). The Bears were 25 points behind overall and shot 34.2 percent with 23 turnovers in the first halves of both games before turning it around with a combined clip of 47.2 percent and just nine turnovers in the two second halves. Cal surpassed K-State and UCSD by 14 points overall after halftime, despite coming short in both games.
- senior trio Lars Thiemann, Joel Brown and Kuany Kuany need five, seven and 13 games played to reach 100 for their respective careers.
The Bears are staying home to host Texas State at 7 p.m. PT in Berkeley on Monday. The competition will be broadcast on the Pac-12 Network.
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