And not the good kind if you’re a Cal fan. That was the worst loss I can remember since this gem 3 years ago (Yes, that is both David Paris and Martin Smith in double figures. The only other Cal player with more than 10 was sir Boom Tho himself). My brother and his friends drove 12 hours to visit me on their spring break and they had the pleasure of experiencing Braun at his finest: at one point down 26 points to the last place team in the Pac-10.
Optimists will say that it seemed like Oregon couldn’t miss from 3 point land. They’re wrong. It didn’t seem like Oregon couldn’t miss; they actually couldn’t. At one point in the second half, Oregon made 10 of 11 3 point shots, en route to a school record 18 treys on 56% 3 point shooting. Unfortunately, it wasn’t a lucky performance by Oregon in the least. Cal’s second half defense was awful and Oregon was simply hitting their wide open shots at a reasonable clip. When 56% on three pointers is a reasonable stat for your opponent, you played atrocious defense.
Still, the reason Cal lost this game wasn’t their terrible, horrible, no good very bad second half defense. It wasn’t because they were flat the entire game, apparently still worn out from the road trip last week. It wasn’t because Christopher only scored 2 points. Before the game, assistant coach Gottlieb relayed an anecdote from the highly successful Washington trip about Roxy Benstein, the Cal radio announcer on 1550, buying him a cup of coffee before the game. Being a superstitious fellow, Gottlieb has been drinking a cup of genuine Roxy-purchased coffee before every game in order to keep the miraculous win streak (3 games, including 2 against the worst 2 teams in the conference) alive. As he’s letting the old blues in on the secret key to Cal’s recent success, loyal reader zoonews does the
unimaginable inevitable and kicks over the cup of coffee. We only realized this when coach Gottlieb, after hurriedly leaving the alumni house, returned to retrieve his lucky coffee (apparently this was important coffee, because he was late getting back to pregame warmups).
Finally, Tigers, Coffee, and Cal losing have been linked.
So there you have it. It wasn’t Christopher, Vierneisel, or even our favorite scapegoat Braun. Cal was doomed before the game even started, thanks to zoonews. Zoonews, I hope the next cup of coffee you kick over is right outside an undersized tiger pen.