Oregon Men and Women's 2009-10 Basketball Season Brings Hope and Optimism... Maybe Even a Little Change

A little less than 3 weeks left. That's how much longer we have to endure football season before we can finally get to some real college sports discussions around here. We can stop talking about Jeremiah Masoli's knee or whether or not LeGarrette Blount is coming back or how Chip Kelly gives funny answers to the media. After all of this time, we can finally get back to talking about our true love...college basketball.

Maybe not the one true love, but maybe a tempting mistress we don't tell the misses about.

While most fans focus on football, the men's and women's basketball teams are both in training camp, getting ready for the season and both teams are looking towards the 2009-10 campaign with questions looming over them. Bev Smith is out as Oregon Women's coach. Enter Paul Westhead who, after swapping stories with Joe Pa and Andy Rooney about the "good old days", is looking to put in his own high-tempo offense that should make the Lady Ducks run like the wind. You like the football high tempo offense? Wait until you see Westhead's team. A new offensive mindset, new expectations and hope for moving the Oregon Women's Basketball Team into the upper tier of the conference. If you haven't seen Paul Westhead's style of run and gun, you should be in for quite the show. We all should be in for quite the show.

For Ernie Kent and the Men's Team, expectations couldn't be higher. Most everyone thought we would be looking at a new coach this season after a dismal display in 2009. Enter Mike Dunlap from Arizona who has said to have been "challenging things" for the team with a renewed emphasis on fundamentals. They're still young and mistakes will happen but the opportunity for success is there to be had. The Pac-10 is relatively down this year with many of the stars of last year heading out into the NBA Draft. If Ernie can't get the young Ducks into the post season this year, Mike Bellotti may start asking Chip if he can be quarterbacks coach again.

Will Tajuan Porter step up in a similar vein to Aaron Brooks? How will Paul Westhead's system translate to the Oregon Women's Team? Will Mike Dunlap go from Associate Head Coach to just straight up Head Coach?

So go ahead, enjoy your football but just remember to get your popcorn ready for November.
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