College Basketball Pick
Oregon is slowly putting together a nice resume, matching what Arizona has done for the most part. The Ducks are tied for first in the Pac-12, one Game above the Wildcats (and five other teams), but that could quickly change after this Game.
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Arizona’s losses have all been on the road and will be calling this Game with Oregon a “Stripe OUt,” meaning the arena wears white and red in every other section. Despite already playing seven Conference Games, the Wildcats have only played twice at home, winning both of those Games by 20-plus points. One of them was actually a 33-point win against Washington, who is tied with Oregon at 5-2 in Conference play.
Oregon has been okay on the road, but again, that’s where most of their losses have come. The Ducks haven’t had many problems at home, but have lost two of three on the road in the Pac-12 with a win over Utah being their only road win.
since this is the only time these teams play in the regular season, it’s a huge Game, but Arizona gets a big edge playing at home.
The Wildcats are coming off a tough loss at California, so this one will be even more important for them to get back on the winning track. Oregon is a tough, hard-nosed team, but when Arizona plays at home, things are always a bit different for the road team.
The Wildcats have a well-rounded team with nine players seeing significant time, at least 18 minutes per Game. Freshman stud and second-leading scorer Allonzo Trier is still out with a broken hand, but Sean Miller has done well with his squad in the Four Games that Trier has missed. There’s still plenty of ways this team can Scoreand that starts with top scorer and transfer Ryan Anderson (14.9 points, 10 rebounds per Game). Anderson has been the definition of consistency on this team, often putting in solid numbers that match those season averages.
Veterans on the team, Kaleb Tarczewski and Gabe York, provide help elsewhere with Tarczewski being a constant presence in the paint due to his size, while York is the shooter and plays the most minutes on the team. In Trier’s absence, guys like Kadeem Allen and Mark Tollefsen have put in big minutes, often one of them hitting double figures even though neither average above nine points per Game.
Oregon is tough and feisty, but they don’t have the best defense. In their last road Game, the Ducks gave up 91 points to Colorado in a loss. They are an athletic bunch, but not having a true center could be an issue in this Game going against Tarczewski. Jordan Bell and Chris Boucher will likely get most of the work dealing with the big man, and those guys are still giving up plenty in weight. But that athleticism will also help in defending Anderson, who relies on quick post moves.
The Ducks have a lengthy team and that starts with their best all-around player in Dillon Brooks, who can do it all. If you stop him, this Oregon team struggles a bit, but he’s hard to stop. Brooks averages 16.2 points, 6.5 boards and 3.1 assists per Game. If he’s hitting his shot, he’s almost impossible to stop. Tollefsen will probably draw him to start, but Arizona has a number of guys that can deal with Brooks, although most of them are bigger.
There is nothing truly outstanding with this Arizona team, but whenever at home, they always seem to get it done and there’s no reason to think that won’t happen in this Game.
Predicted Score- Arizona 79 Oregon 75