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Saturday Basketball Game Notes and Tournament Projections

Arizona is playing some scary good basketball these days, winning against UCLA 84-72 and effectively souring the importance of our win on Thursday. UCLA is now 8-4 and in 3rd place, with Washington in first and ASU in second. Arizona, now 8-5, is looking to be a serious march contender.

At this point, I see our conference having 3 locks: UCLA, Washington, and ASU. Arizona will be in the tournament if they beat either ASU or Washington down the final stretch. California will also be in the tournament if they get 22 wins (including the Pac-10 tournament), which looks likely with games against Stanford, Oregon, and Oregon State on the remaining schedule.

Just doing a little sleuthing on our future center, Ruslan Pateev:

January, 2009: Pateev does not have great explosion and athleticism, but he gets the most out of his ability. He has a very big body and clogs up the paint on the defensive end. Pateev runs the floor decently and will get up the court adequately. He scores the majority of his points from offensive rebounding and tip-ins, which he does a good job of accomplishing through his surprisingly quick leaping ability and reactions when the ball comes off the boards. Pateev has good length and size and his sheer size just clogs up the lane on defense, though he does not block a high number of shots at this point of his career. - Scouts, Inc.

At 7'0", 240 lbs, bring him on.

At 3 pm, Cal takes on Stanford in a game that will go a long way towards deciding the tournament representatives from our conference. Stanford has been inconsistent this season, but a strong burst at the end of this conference season could give them a chance. Another win for Cal would just further their resumé.

There isn't much news about the Devils today, but we'll keep you posted of anything exciting.