MBB Exhibition Game 1 Preview: Concordia vs Oregon

5:00 pm Pacific at Mac Court    Radio Only

A Look at the Cavaliers

Concordia University comes to Mac Court on Sunday for an exhibition matchup with an Oregon Ducks Men's Team that looks to put a forgettable 2008-09 season behind them. Let's be frank on what this match up is. This is a way for the Ducks to work on some skills in a game style environment against a team that just doesn't have the caliber of athletes to compete with a Pac-10 team for a long.

Concordia hails from the Cascade Collegiate Conference, the same conference that is home to Northwest Christian University where former Duck Ben Voogd is playing his senior season. Last year was a bit of a disaster for the Caviliers, going 10-20 for the year and 4-16 in conference. They've already played an exhibition game at the Chiles Center against the Portland Pilots, losing 106-78 with 6 Pilots scoring in double figures.

Alex Tiefenthaler is a 6-9 senior playing the middle and should provide an interesting test for Michael Dunigan and Josh Crittle. Alex was named to the Cascade Collegiate Conference Preseason Men's Basketball Team for 2009 and averaged 16.4 points and led the team with 8.1 rebounds a game. He is also a threat to shoot the three ball, hitting a little under 40% from beyond the arc. He shot 8-13 from the field with 19 total points at Portland in the loss.

Offensively, Concordia likes to work the ball around and look for shots in the paint, using up time on the clock in the process. Oregon will provide quite the contrast in style as the Ducks will look to run on rebounds and in the transition game. The speed and talent advantage for the Ducks should take over the game, especially if fundamentals improve from last year. Taujan Porter should be able to get nearly any shot he wants with his athleticism.

Keys to the Game

1. Use the talent and athletic advantages to dominate. Oregon has a clear edge in talent and athleticism in every facet of the game. Facilities are better, coaching is better and the competition that the Ducks have faced from last year is better. Tajuan Porter needs to run all over the court, getting his teammates involved. Dunigan and Catron need to attack the rim and continue to attack the rim by going through the defenders.

2. Fundamentals. I want to see better, overall fundamental play from the team as a whole. In some regards, this team is still learning to play with each other but with a year under their belts, it's time to step up. Play better, take care of the ball and work as a team.

3. Don't let Concordia think they can hang with Oregon. Get out early, run the ball and get easy buckets. Oregon needs to control the tempo and this game should get out of hand quickly in Oregon's favor.

Final Thoughts

Exhibition games generally don't mean a whole lot but I'm betting this Oregon team will just be happy to get out on the court against competition that doesn't also wear a Duck uniform. Ernie has quite the task ahead of him in turning around a program that a horrible year in 2009. This game starts that journey and we'll see what kind of impact Mike Dunlap has had on the players. I don't see this game being competitive but I don't want it to even been in question. If this game is close, we should have grave concerns for the season, even against a down Pac-10 Conference.
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