Oregon Ducks men’s basketball was in the top 10. The program will hope to avoid plummeting outside the top 20 when the Ducks face Califronia on Saturday. Stanford demolished Oregon on Wednesday night, 76-52, ending the Ducks’ nine-game win streak and proving that the Pac-12 is wide open.
The blowout loss against the Cardinal will surely mean a plunge in the rankings for UO, taking the Ducks out of the top 10 they had just broken into. Oregon hopes to salvage some pride in the Bay Area against the Golden Bears at 1:30 p.m. on Feb. 2.
Oregon is still atop the Pac-12 standings at 7-1, 18-3 overall, but the one loss means both Arizona schools as well as UCLA are at the Ducks’ heels, though Oregon would hold the tiebreaker over both schools. Cal enters with a 12-8 record and is stuck in a crowded middle of the pack with the Bears and three other squads posting 4-4 records in league play.
Cal is fresh off a come-from-behind win against Oregon State on Thursday, making up an eight-point halftime deficit for the three-point win.
Junior Allen Crabbe is the Bears’ top scorer as well as the leader in the conference with 20 points per game. Crabbe is also third on his team in rebounding with a 5.5 average. He grabs more boards than any player on Oregon except Arsalan Kazemi, who averages 9.5 boards a game. Crabbe is Cal’s biggest threat from deep, too, having made more long-balls than anyone on the Ducks.
Crabbe’s backcourt mate Justin Cobbs is the other scoring menace for Cal, scoring 14.7 each game.
The Ducks offer a much more balanced attack with five players scoring at least 10 per game. But this was not the case against Stanford, as only Carlos Emory achieved his average while senior leader E.J. Singler had only six points (two second half threes).
The Golden Bears, on average, are bigger and older than the Ducks, meaning the Ducks will want to push the pace. But the Ducks struggled in doing that against the Cardinal, missing many shots (under 35 percent shooting) while turning the ball over 20 times, well above their average. Point guard Dominic Artis is still out of action for the Ducks with a foot injury and his backup Johnathan Loyd did not replace him well against Stanford, going 0-for-7 for no points.
The Ducks have 43 turnovers in the two games Artis has missed.
Oregon averages more points, rebounds, assists and a higher shooting percentage than Cal, and the Bears also lost to Stanford, 69-59.
For television viewers the game will be broadcast on ROOT (FSN).