05.Mar.2012 Hoops Chances in the Pac-12 Tourney

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Call me crazy, but I'm feeling pretty good about game 1 on Wednesday.

Not sure why other than a gut feeling, but here are some possible reasons:

  • It's hard to beat a decent team three times in a row. Washington State would have to do that on a neutral court.
  • OSU played solid man defense the past two games. Maybe a light's been turned on? You never know with these guys, but they showed promising intensity.
  • At this point, Craig Robinson should have a plan to slow Brock Motum (I'd play man-to-man and put Collier on him).
  • Beavs have their best shot at the NCAA tourney in some time. Should provide motivation and excitement in that locker room. A win or two probably gets them in the NIT, so there's that subplot, too.

The Beavs have gotten 9 of the 17 wins versus 200+ RPI teams. That's bad. They're 2-3 versus 100-200 RPI teams, 3-6 versus 51-100, and 2-3 versus 1-50. So, this is an average to bad squad. We know that. They're just playing their best ball right now (granted, against week opponents), so I'm thinking they have a good shot. It all boils down to defense. If they play intense man to man and give effort for the full 40 minutes, then they should win this game. After that, who knows–there's no clear favorite in this tournament. Anyone else feeling strangely confident?

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  • NCAA_viOlation NCAA_viOlation says:
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    I’m feeling strangely confident, if the Beavs can control the boards. Moreland Burton, and Collier will need to come up big. Gotta limit the turnovers too. I always hate to see this team pick up a swagger after making a few consecutive positive plays. It seems like the suddenly turn into a street ball team and start sailing passes over guys heads and out of bounds. Just play with solid fundamentals and everything will be fine.

    • angry angry says:
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      Agree solid fundamentals and intense D. Washington St will try to force them into a half court game. Could be a real ugly game. I’m thinking in the low 60s.

      • NCAA_viOlation NCAA_viOlation says:
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        I don’t like our bracket, but at least our first 2 games would come against teams whose fan bases live further away from Staples Center than ours. I don’t like our chances against Washington. They have a size mismatch at every position, and a major talent mismatch at head coach.

        • Jack says:
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          UW doesn’t have a size advantage. They have a lot of big guards who are really really good if you allow them to get free. But Aziz is only a factor on defense.

          I should say he’s only a defensive factor if we don’t run the 1-3-1. How nice would it be if we beat Wazzu only to watch Starks try to stop Aziz on the bottom of that god-forsaken zone.

        • GoBeavs90 says:
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          I don’t think Lorenzo Romar is all that good of a coach to be honest. If he was they would actually play to their ability every single year instead of always needing to get extremely hot lately and make the Pac-10/12 championship game to get into the Big Dance. Halfway through the year they always look like a team that’s underachieving. He also has a couple lottery picks on his team, Craig doesn’t right now. Surprising that so many people think he’s such a good coach. Very overrated IMO. Wouldn’t surprise me if Craig outcoached him on Thursday(Yes, I think OSU will play UW on Thursday)

          • Jack says:
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            I agree. He’s the Jeff Tedford of hoops.

          • NCAA_viOlation NCAA_viOlation says:
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            In the last decade he’s taken his team to the big dance 6 times (and most likely again this year for #7) 3 sweet 16 appearances. Another 3rd round exit. Is that a bad thing that his teams get hot at the right time and play well when it counts?

            He is no Jeff Tedford. Sure, he hasn’t won the whole tournament, but he brings a competitive team nearly every year.

          • Jack says:
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            He hasn’t made it past the Sweet 16 with several teams who should have done so. He also hasn’t won the many titles that were there for the taking with the talent he’s had on his teams.

            Post-season play separates the big boys from the pretenders. I still think Monty’s the best coach in the Pac. But he fails to take his team to the promised land year after year. Give Bone Romar’s program, and he will take them to the Final Four more often than we want… if his whole team isn’t either academically ineligible or in prison.

          • beaverkman beaverkman says:
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            Man you have high standards, you must really think coach Rob sucks, because he hasn’t even gotten to the Big Dance let alone win a league title, or even sniffed an Elite Eight.

            Romar is a very good coach, a good recruiter, and he seems like a good character guy. Is he better than Montgomery? Sean Mill is pretty close, too. I wouldn’t sell Howland too short either, despite of what came out this week. He’s a heckuva X’s and O’s guy. I think its a toss up. But I would say that those two are the top coaches in the league, don’t know too much about new teams and their coaches. I think you’ve missed the mark on him.

          • Jack says:
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            I’m not saying he’s a bad coach.

            But he has yet to prove to me or you that he can big boy coach. Rag on Coach Rob all you want, he has yet to do the same.

            Romar won the Pac this year?

            Whoop-de-fuckin-doo!

            What’s he going to do with it?

            See you next year UW. Glad you could… *ahem*… represent.

            Whatever.

            Just because we ain’t there doesn’t mean we can’t see there.

          • Jack says:
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            And your precious Romar has never sniffed an elite eight either… except as an assistant.

          • Jack says:
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            I’m just saying that you don’t take Jerry West talent and waste a decade.

            Now I’m ready to rant against Utah and the whole Majeris thing… though I know he was doing weird things due to health.

          • beaverbeliver says:
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            He won the conference. CR has never done that. He is a good coach.

  • osbeavs says:
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    I am not nearly as confident. We haven’t beaten many good teams and this team seems to get down on themselves fairly quickly. We lack the leadership to win a bunch of consecutive games, otherwise I would absolutely agree. I think this is a team that should win a single game and then get knocked out by a big boy. Too bad we have to play WSU in the first round because that team has our fucking number. Don’t be surprised if they knock us out, didn’t they beat us twice last year too?

  • Mud&Sticks Mud&Sticks says:
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    It’s a road game.
    In games that “matter”
    1) the players revert to school yard ball.
    2) the players, especially the guards get out of control and start relying on low percentage shots. One tiny guy in particular. You’ll note I didn’t say runt.
    3) In the past CR tends to choke w.r.t. game management.

    Those seem to be enough reasons for the Beavs to get beat. I’d like them to prove me wrong so, players, the ball is in your court – prove me wrong.

  • VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
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    I’m feeling very confident about the WSU game, but even though we played UW close back in mid-Feb I don’t see us pulling the upset.

  • Jack says:
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    I don’t know. I’m confident in the the team’s actual ability and talent. But only this past weekend and the SoCal sweep showed any of it in-league.

    It will be a their first visit to SoCal this year. So there’s that. Burton shows well in SoCal when he manages to not be suspended. And I think Berto will play inspired ball.

    I hate to say it from the outset. But I think the refs will determine how far this team goes. Starks did well against CU when it looked like Cartmell was letting the game get out of hand early in the second stanza. Collier and Burton kept their cool in the face of some very physical play due to Starks’ clutch performance. But we don’t do well with consistency when the officials aren’t also consistent. A more mature team would get over that hump. I don’t think we’re quite there yet.

    I hope I’m wrong.

    • Jack says:
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      I should also say that last year’s tourney could show us what we might expect for this year.

      Coach Rob brings a great game plan against teams he’s seen before. And that might push us into the semi’s this year. This team knows what to expect in terms of physicality for post-season play. Will they steel themselves for the games? Or will they tire and fold in a fit like they did last year?

  • GoBeavs90 says:
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    I’m feeling EXTREMELY confident. I think they will take care of WSU and I think can definitely UW. Washington didn’t impress me the last time, if Roberto didn’t play as badly as he did the Beavers win. I don’t see Roberto playing that badly again. Jared didn’t shoot well either. The Beavers held them to 35% shooting on a tough m2m defense and it has gotten a lot better since. Craig appears also to have strictly moved to the m2m. I’m really confident they can make the semis and a matchup with Arizona or Colorado? Does anyone really think the Beavers couldn’t win that? I think this team makes a deep Pac-12 Tournament run. They’re more than capable of winning it, there’s nobody in the conference they can’t beat.

    Can’t forget either, Craig’s teams the last two seasons have performed well at the tournament. They had a good Washington team on the ropes two years ago, they could have beaten UA but Jared had to leave with some bad cramps and he was causes Zona all kinds of problems. I think the Beavers will rise to the occasion and play some great basketball.

    • Jack says:
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      I’m going to hedge my optimism. Everything you say is true (except that the semi match-up would be UA/UCLA, not CU). But this team needs to get over their own propensity to pout when faced with hardship. If this was a steeled team, I would guarantee a Tourney win and a Sweet 16 appearance at the very least.

      They just haven’t proven they’re there yet. If they were a steeled team, they would have contended for the leagu

      • Jack says:
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        … league title in the regular season.

      • GoBeavs90 says:
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        My mistake. I think UA advances to semis though.

        • Jack says:
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          That’s tough. Cats fans hate that they will likely face UCLA first. Their weakness is front court depth, and UCLA has used it to beat them down this year.

  • GoBeavs90 says:
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    As far as Motum goes, I actually would like to see Eric Moreland on him. Longer arms, maybe a little quicker, taller. I think he can give Motum some issues.

    • Jack says:
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      Moreland has done better, but his off-ball defense is still sketchy. I think angry’s right in calling for Collier to check Motum. Moreland stilll has a propensity to lose focus when his man doesn’t have the ball. He recovered well against CU sometimes, but he was still beat.

    • Jack says:
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      I will say that Moreland’s help D was better than I’ve seen him perform in like EVER. He’s turning a corner. He’s just not quite there yet. Anyone out there who thinks he might be key to our success in the future… I might agree with you there. When he’s on point, he can be a game-changer.

    • beaverkman beaverkman says:
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      Eric Moreland tweeted that he would be guarding him.

  • Kenny Beaver says:
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    Jack, put down the weed and take a breath of fresh air.
    There is not one team in the Pac-12 that can make it to the sweet 16.
    The talent level outside of our league is way superior.

    • Jack says:
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      Dude! I wish I could have weed. My wife says she won’t allow it until the kids are done with high school. So… it’s another 14 years for me.

    • rsteve503 rsteve503 says:
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      Going by just talent level, there should never be any Cinderella teams…..but there are.

  • NCAA_viOlation NCAA_viOlation says:
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    Not sure if it’s been mentioned and really not a huge surprise either, but Cunningham was named to the Pac-12 all first team today.

    http://www.oregonlive.com/pac-12/index.ssf/2012/03/pac-12_basketball_honors_oregon_states_jared_cunni.html

  • rsteve503 rsteve503 says:
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    The analysis of our wins and losses is not, imo, applicable.

    We have been very UP AND DOWN all this season. We can be down and lose to an Idaho or up and beat a Cal or Texas.

    Its all a matter of which Beaver team shows up. I would think, because of the stakes involved, we would play like there is no tomorrow. If we do, we can win … even the whole thing.

  • slamadam says:
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    to quote the one and only jay john, im cautiously optimistic

  • oneoldbeav says:
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    OT – Rueck named COY…there is some justice!

  • beaverbeliver says:
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    We suck at basketball! I kind of hope for a swift merciful end to this disappointment of a a season.

  • mckalk says:
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    I don’t know what to think, since this edition of Beavs hoops is hell bent on making Wazzu look like Kentucky when they play them. They allowed them to shoot 50% or above in both games including 50% from three land and they forced very few turnovers. They definitely need to get off their asses and play some tough defense on Wednesday.

  • StarcraftSquall says:
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    The Seattle Times is already writing about a UW-WSU rematch on Thursday. Let them! The noose will get tighter around both their necks. This time, the pressure is squarely on the other team. And I mean both teams from the Evergreen State, should the Beavers take care of business.

  • beaverkman beaverkman says:
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    Well, heck Softy on KJR said yesterday that no matter who they face, UW has no business losing to either WSU or OSU. He is already talking about Friday’s game.

  • rsteve503 rsteve503 says:
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    Everyone give the Oregon State chain saw lunge….and shout VRROOM!, VRROOOM!, VROOOM!…..OOOO!….eSSSSS! … UUUUU!!

  • JD says:
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    The game is scheduled tomorrow for a 12:10 tip and if they can win Thursday will be a 12:10 tip as well. It seems like you would want the 8-9 game at the end of the day since it is more likely to be a closer (more interesting for fans/TV viewers) game.

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