BERKELEY, Calif. – As Freudian slips go, the one California guard Allen Crabbe made Tuesday afternoon is rather understandable.
“I just try to get as many wins as I can,” Crabbe said during a press conference at Haas Pavilion, before catching himself and adding, “I mean, as we can as a team.”
The junior guard leads the Pac-12 in scoring and is coming off a sensational 31-point game in an upset of Arizona at McKale Center on Sunday, good enough to earn him conference Player of the Week honors.
Crabbe called his performance “probably the best I ever shot in college,” making all eight of his looks from inside the three-point line and 4-of-7 shots from behind the arc. He was quick to praise his teammates for getting him the ball in the right areas, but his activity and refusal to settle for mid-range jump shots was noticeable.
That decisiveness was a far cry from the five turnovers, tied for his season-high, and 6-of-14 shooting Crabbe delivered in a four-point loss at Arizona State. He was determined not to let that happen again.
“It’s all up to me,” Crabbe said. “Nobody is going to hold me back expect myself. If I don’t come in to the game with the right mindset, then I probably be as aggressive as I was against Arizona. I just got to prepare myself mentally the right way, just go out there and be aggressive.”
Now if Crabbe can continue that mindset, Cal could play its way into contention for an NCAA tournament at-large bid, even with an RPI that currently sits at 59. Five of its final seven regular-season games are at home, with trips to floundering Oregon and Oregon State next week.
“Got to take advantage of home court in this conference,” Crabbe said. “We’re just looking to build on each game and continue to make progress. Hopefully we can just get as many wins as we can as possible in this last seven.”
Guard Ricky Kreklow will meet with doctors this week to assess his recovery from a stress fracture.
Kreklow had a pin surgically placed in his right foot last October, then aggravated the injury during the 79-65 loss at UCLA on Jan. 3, and has missed the last 10 games.
“That’s a reasonable length of time to think something positive might have happened with the bone growth,” Cal head coach Mike Montgomery said.
Appearing in just five games this season, the redshirt sophomore transfer from Missouri looked as if he would offer some much-needed energy and grit off the bench, averaging 4.4 points, 2.6 rebounds, and 2.6 assists per game.
Even if Kreklow is cleared, Montgomery isn’t sure how much he could offer the desperately thin roster.
“I bet you he has practiced five times all year, so trying to integrate him back in would be difficult anyway, but you also don’t want to run the risk of having it become chronic,” Montgomery said.
Wolfe To Be Honored
Former Cal player and assistant coach Andy Wolfe will be presented the Pete Newell Career Achievement Award at halftime of Thursday’s game against UCLA, the school announced Tuesday.
Wolfe, the first player in school history to score 1,000 points, earned First-Team All-America honors as a senior in 1948. He later served as an assistant coach under Nibs Price from 1951-54.
Dan Greenspan writes about the Pac-12 for Fox Sports Next. Follow him on Twitter @DanGreenspan.