Teams: Syracuse Orange (5-0) vs. California Golden Bears (5-0)
Rankings: Syracuse (8/7), Cal (UNR)
Day & Time: Tuesday, November 26, 7:00 p.m. EST
Arena: Lahaina Civic Center, Maui, HI
Line: -4.5, Syracuse
Announcers: Sean McDonough & Jay Bilas
Radio: Syracuse IMG Network
Cal News: California Golden Blogs
Rivalry: 2-0, Syracuse
Streak: 2, Syracuse (duh)
First Meeting: Syracuse and Cal first met in 2009 at the 2K Sports Classic in MSG. Scoop Jardine scored 22 points and Wes Johnson put up a double-double to lead the Orange to a 95-73 victory.
Last Meeting: How could you forget? Last season's third-round showdown in San Jose was a 66-60 SU win en route to the Final Four and it was the game that launched a thousand "Cal can get right back in this" tweets in my general direction.
School Connections: Boeheim and Montgomery are both on the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) board of directors and longtime friends.
Head Coaches: SU: Jim Boeheim (38th Year, 925-314); Cal: Mike Montgomery (6th Year, 109-59)
Last Year: The Bears finished the season 21–12 (12–6), losing in the quarterfinals of the Pac-12 Tournament to Utah. A 12-seed in the NCAA Tournament, they upset 5-seed UNLV in the second round before losing in the third round to You Know Who.
Last Game: David Kravish had himself a game (19 Pts, 15 Rebs) and Ricky Kreklow scored 17 off the bench in Cal's 85-77 win over Arkansas to set up a showdown with SU.
Head Coach: Montgomery began his head coaching career at Montana, which he parlayed into a career-defining stint at Stanford. While there he went 393-167 and took the Cardinal to the 1998 Final Four. His two-year stint with the Golden State Warriors didn't work out so he returned to the Bay Area to helm the Cal program, which has gotten to the NCAAs in four of his five seasons. He & Boeheim are old friends, though he once likened SU's coach's reliance on the 2-3 zone to "wearing a skirt." Skirts 1, Montgomery 0.
"Fear Me, I've Killed Hundreds Of Timelords": Gone is Allen Crabbe and his uncanny ability to get Cal back into this. Here now is Justin Cobbs, whom you might remember from last season as well. He's averaging 11.3 PPG and 6.3 APG. Let's keep an eye on the big men, Richard Solomon and David Kravish. The duo averages roughly 20 RPG and that's never a strong look for us.
If Syracuse Wins…: They'll play for the Maui Invitational championship at 10 p.m. EST on Wednesday against the winner of the Baylor-Dayton game.
If Syracuse Loses…: They'll have to settle for the 3rd Place Game at 7:30 p.m. EST on Wednesday against the loser of the Baylor-Dayton game.
Fun Fact: 1959 was a very good year for both schools. Syracuse was the college football national champion and Cal won the NCAA Tournament (over Louisville).