Tough loss at home for Oregon last night(Tue). It's important to remain optimistic with a new regime running the show but it was Idaho. I'd cite a loss to Portland during the Elite 8 run of 2002, but I don't think that's an accurate comparison. This is simply not a very good shooting team and obviously they lack the size inside to overcome that by hammering the rock down low for higher percentage shots. I'd say with the coaching, the effort and just as key, the apparent coachability of the current roster a complete disaster can be averted. That said, there will be some rough stretches as Pac 10 play begins after a break a week from Thursday at The Pit against Arizona. I figured the Ducks were a lock for last in league. Then I saw how much Oregon State has struggled. When USC lost to Rider early in the year I thought the Trojans were vulnerable but they've posted rock solid wins versus ranked teams(Texas & Tennessee) and nearly knocked off then #3 Kansas. Stanford isn't great but they tore apart the same Virginia team who dusted Oregon without their best player by 21. Plus the Cardinal can throw out a pretty big front line. The jury is out on Cal. They posted a nice win against #20 Temple in game 3 and we'll learn more about them tonight when they host Kansas. Washington is really strong, the Cougs buried Idaho, took out Gonzaga and have just one loss, by 5 to that excellent Kansas State team. Sean Miller has Arizona on the rise with a stud sophomore Derrick Williams and a 10 man rotation. ASU is tough to get a read on as they've beaten no one and have lost to each major conference team they've played like Baylor & St. Johns as well as a 9 & 1 New Mexico team plus a home loss to Richmond. I'm thinking the Ducks might scratch out an 8th place finish at best. That final game at Mac Court, Arizona State on New Year's Day could be a key in setting the tone for their Pac 10 season.
I know some of these pre-Christmas Bowl Games are hard to get pumped for but last night's Louisville win over Southern Miss was pretty entertaining with the Cardinals taking it 31-28. You've got to love the oddsmakers. Had UL a 2 1/2 point favorite with the over/under at 60! This is why they build all those nice places in Vegas. I think Boise State will ruin Utah tonight. I'm saying lay every one of those 17 points. I do not buy into the theory the Broncos are disappointed from missing out on a major after that heartbreaking loss to Nevada. If they were playing a lesser program, maybe, but the Utes are joining the Pac 10 and you just sense Chris Peterson views this as another proving ground. It's the final game for those 2 terrific senior wide outs Austin Pettis and Titus Young along with all purpose performer Jeremy Avery. Plus I think BSU's defense will do well against the talented but erratic Ute QB Jordan Wynn.