Wednesday, January 30, 2013
Upset alert tonight for Oregon?
By Joe Kaiser
Oregon (18-2, 7-0 Pac-12) sits alone atop the conference standings and has rattled off eight wins in a row, but tonight's game at Stanford could be a big test for a Ducks team without starting point guard Dominic Artis.
Remember, the Cardinal are coming off a convincing 31-point win at Utah over the weekend, the type of victory that could create momentum for a program that needs to finish very strong for any chance at making the NCAA tournament for the first time in four years under Johnny Dawkins. Maples Pavilion is no longer the big homecourt advantage it was during Mike Montgomery's reign, but you can expect the Cardinal crowd to be fired up for tonight's 8 p.m. tip.
Oregon's Arsalan Kazemi and Stanford's Josh Huestis should be a good battle in the frontcourt, but the key to this game could come down to two things: will the Ducks be able to contain Dwight Powell, and will the Cardinal's backcourt of Chasson Randle and Aaron Bright be able to find a groove against Ducks' backup point guard Johnathan Loyd? The Ducks will also have to find a way to cool off the red-hot shooting of stretch 4 John Gage, who has connected on 9-of-10 three-pointers over the last three games.