Where: Tucson, Arizona
When: 5:00PM (Mountain)
TV:Pac 12 Network
Radio: Wildcat Radio
The #7 Arizona Wildcats (20-2, 8-2) will face Pac 12′s leading scorer in Allen Crabbe (19.4 PPG) on Sunday when they take on the California Golden Bears. Cal (13-9,5-5) is in the middle of the Pac 12 just coming off a loss against our rival up North. California is always a tough opponent as they are coached by one of the better coaches in the Pac 12; Mike Montgomery. He always has his Cal Bears prepared and focused on the game at hand. The Pac 12 is a tough conference this year and everyone brings their “A” game against Arizona. Lets look inside Miller’s Chalkboard for the keys to a Sunday evening victory:
Bears To Watch: As mentioned earlier Allen Crabbe will be difficult to contain. He will get his shots as he takes most of them for Cal, but how the Cats challenge them and force him to take difficult shots will be key. The Bears have two talented big men in David Kravish and Richard Solomon, who combine for 16.4 points per game and 13.6 rebounds a game. A stud guard for the Bears is Justin Cobbs, who averages 14.3 PPG and 4.4 APG.
Fast Start: How many games are we going to come out flat and allow the opponent to be up more than ten points before the fans get their popcorn? This is getting out of hand and needs to come to a hault quick. I guess it is a good thing we are getting exposure to these scenarios before the big tourney, but one has to wonder if we will be able to come back each time. I’d rather play it safe and have us come out playing well and be up ten five minutes into the game.
Match-Ups: Sean Miller was so happy Wednesday when he saw that his depth was so critical in the win against Stanford. The Cardinal presented a different type of game with Tarc not being factor down low with how spread out they played. So what did Sean do? He used Kevin Parrom and Angelo Chol a lot more. The pay off? Kevin had 8 points, 9 rebounds, and 3 assists. Chol had 6 points and 8 rebounds. Kevin has always played well off the bench, but I think Sean now has to think about starting the versatile SF. Maybe Kevin starts Sunday, but either way Sean Miler has the weapons to match up with any opposition because of how many athletes he has. Meanwhile Chol, a crowd favorite, most likely earned him some more minutes and back into the regular rotation, especially if any one of the freshman are not having a particular good game.
Cats To Watch: The veterans have really come to play as of late. Mark Lyons, Solomon Hill, and Kevin Parrom have all had great games the past couple weeks (except KP’s ejection). I see them all pushing the younger teammates to step up each game while they continue their consistent play into March. Nick Johnson has been sick the past couple games and will be close to 100% come Sunday, so he will be back to his consistent self on defense and offense. But a player I see as having a great game come Sunday is Brandon Ashley. He did not play very well against the Cardinal, fouling out in 13 minutes of play, the last one being a really dumb foul. I will be watching him closely to see how he responds to his poor defensive play last game.
Prediction: The Wildcats sweep up the Bay Area schools Sunday evening 74-65.
Topics: Angelo Chol, Arizona Wildcats, Arizona Wildcats Basketball, California Golden Bears, Kaleb Tarczewski, Kevin Parrom, Mark Lyons, NCAA March Madness Tournament, Nick Johnson, Pac-12, Pac-12 Basketball, Sean Miller, Solomon Hill