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Oregon 79, California 70: Quick Thoughts

First off, I want to apologize for the sparse coverage as of late.  As my regular readers know, I coach high school basketball.  My primary responsibility is as head coach of the JVII team.  Our practice slot is from 7:30 to 9:30 PM, meaning most Thursday games are difficult for me to cover.  Pair that with the youth tournament that we hosted last weekend, and I saw about ten minutes total of the trip to the desert.

Last night, I saw some of the first half while planning practice, and listened to most of the second on the radio on my way to practice.  So, if I'm off base on anything I'm saying, keep that in mind.  Can't wait for the Stanford game on Saturday SUNDAY.  It'll be the first time since Nebraska that I will have seen a full basketball game.  You will get my quick thoughts based on what I saw and heard.  I'll have a better breakdown for Stanford, when I can actually pay total attention to the whole game.

That said, what impressed me about this game was that Oregon, for the second game in a row, came out with energy.  That lull that we saw in the Nebraska and Oakland games wasn't there.  The other thing that impressed me was the poise of this team.  When Cal went on their 22-6 run to take the lead, the Ducks roared back, and put the game away.

That said, there are two things that you have to be really concerned about.  The first is Tajuan Porter.  According to the Emerald, he's made three of his last 27 threes.  I'm not going to pile on TP.  He played only 15 minutes yesterday.  What we have here is a lack of confidence (seems a lot like Champ last year--TP better not transfer like Champ did).  Keep shooting TP.  You're too good of a player for things not to start clicking again.  This is really th first adversity he's had to deal with here.   Sometimes, it just takes guys a little while to figure out how to respond.  I'm confident he'll figure it out.

The other thing that worries me is that we don't respond to the zone defense well.  Instead of trying to break down the zone, we settle for jacking up threes (31 attempts yesterday), and we're not doing a good job of making them.  We've gotta start breaking down that zone a little bit, or we're in for some long games.

Stanford up next on Saturday SUNDAY and, as I've said, I'm looking forward to actaully  watching a full game.  Those Lopez twins are a handfull.  But Cal was a good win, and there's no reason to believe that we can't get another.