Oregon entered Pauley Pavilion riding a strong 6 game winning streak, including a bold victory over then ranked No. 4, Arizona.
The Bruins, on the other hand, were cruising along on their own winning streak of 10 games. During that streak, UCLA won by an average of nearly 12 points and knocked off then ranked No. 7 Mizzouri. Oregon came into the building and played with grit, intensity, and ultimately, a desire to win. Here’s how its broken down into five key stats.
26 percent: The combined shooting percentage of Jordan Adams and Shabazz Muhammad. Adams was 0-for-6 and Shabazz was 4-for-9. We all know that Shabazz is the leader of this team, but Jordan Adams is a go-to guy also. Our best scorers didn’t even pose a threat to the Ducks.
5: The number of offensive rebounds Oregon got on one play. It’s arguable that its just the way the ball bounced, but the Bruins have run from this issue far too long. Their lack of defensive rebounding finally caught up.
12: The second chance points for the Ducks. Compared to UCLA’s two, it seems like quite a big factor in the Bruin’s letdown.
27: The points scored by the Bruins in the second half. After scoring 40 in the first, their scoring plummeted and they played a half court offense. With out a real big man, posting up simply isn’t an option.
Too Many: How many times, grumpy and aggressive as usual, Ben Howland screamed at players and stomped onto the court. Put yourself in the teams shoes. Your a freshman going into the most renowned collegiate basketball program of all time. Your excited yet nervous, and ready to take on the challenges that you know are coming. Whoops! You turned the ball over. No big deal. Get better and learn from your mistakes. Right?
Next thing you know, your coach is at the 3 point line screaming and yelling. He’s waving his hands and even wastes a time out just to sub someone in for you. He repeatedly checks that little white paper in his pocket, but nobody knows whats on it. He sees it and seems to get more mad.
Alright, you learned your lesson. Get back in the game. Now your team is confused because, in a matter of minutes, multiple people have subbed in and out. Who knows who is on the court at any given moment? Who knows the strengths and weaknesses of the team if they don’t even know who is on the court with them? Don’t you feel at home? Nope.