LAS VEGAS -- California -- the only team this year to have beaten eventual Pac-12 Tournament champion Oregon by 20 back in early February -- earned a nod in the Pac-12 All-Tournament selections on Saturday, announced as the conference crowned the Ducks on the MGM Grand Garden Arena court.
Freshman forward Ivan Rabb was the only player on the six-man team to not have played in the championship game, and, along with Pac-12 Player of the Year Jakob Poeltl, was one of two non-Oregon players.
Rabb, who hit 15 of 18 shots from the field, owned the highest shooting percentage over the course of the tournament, and with an average of 10.0 rebounds per game, was fifth among tournament participants. Rabb averaged 17.0 points per game, and tallied his 10th double-double of the season against Oregon State in the quarterfinals, with 21 points and 15 rebounds, both career highs. His 10 double-doubles were also a team high on the season. His night against the Beavers put him atop the program's freshman rebounding list, ahead of NBA star Ryan Anderson.
"Because they were so spread out, it's almost as if they had five guards on the perimeter," said head coach Cuonzo Martin. "Everything's wide open, so he did a great job. He switched off on the ball screens. That means in most cases late in the game he was on the guy that was handling the ball trying to take him one on one so now if he missed the shot he gets the rebound.
"I just thought he did a great job keeping balls alive, chest to chest, defend those guys. That's not an easy for a guy almost 6'11" guarding smaller guys attacking off the dribble. But I thought he did a tremendous job rebounding. The long rebounds, he's getting most of those balls 50-50, he's getting the ball."
Nobody else on either team had more than five rebounds in that quarterfinal contest.
"I don't know if it was necessarily his best game," Martin said. "I think when you look at production-wise, I think he becomes the all-time rebound leader as a freshman in Cal history, but I don't know if it's necessarily his best game with my eyes. The numbers say that, but I've seen him play really good games, and he might not have the numbers that he's had."
"Rabb, he's been on a tear offensive rebounding-wise," said Utes head coach Larry Krystkowiak.
Rabb had two offensive boards against Utah, and five total, to go along with 13 points on 6-of-7 shooting.