It will be a busy weekend for Oregon athletics. The Ducks will be playing all over the West Coast and in Hawaii. The men's basketball team has a crucial game against UCLA, the baseball team is just beginning their season today, the women's basketball team will host the Arizona schools, and the track team will be competing once again in Seattle, Wash.
At the beginning of the season Oregon basketball fans probably were hoping to just be competitive. With only six games remaining in the regular season the Ducks have a realistic opportunity to make the NCAA tournament in March. Yesterday Joe Lunardi released his latest bracketology and the Ducks are in the "First Four Out" list. Coincidentally the team that Oregon plays this weekend, UCLA, was just added to the 68-team field and the Bruins are in the "Last Four In." If Oregon can continue their current winning streak I would expect them to take UCLA's spot and the Ducks should control their own destiny heading into their final five games.
The first pitch of the season will be thrown at 8:35 p.m. pacific time as the Ducks will face Hawaii. Last year Oregon made it to the postseason and was eliminated in the regional round. Oregon's best hitter, Mitchell Tolman, returns to a new and improved lineup that will be more effective this season. The bullpen could be the best in the conference this year and return Cole Irvin, our ATQ staff previewed the pitching staff earlier this week.
Last time Oregon faced the Wildcats in women's basketball, on Jan. 25, the Ducks lost in overtime. After that loss to Arizona the women caught fire and have won three of their last four games. It has been a transition period for Oregon because of first year coach Kelly Graves new schemes. The Ducks are hoping that their play on the court will turn into a postseason birth.
The No. 1 men and No. 5 women will be split up across the country this weekend. The Millrose Games will be the highlight of the weekend for the track team; six Ducks will compete against professionals. Edward Cheserek broke the indoor two-mile record in these games two years ago and will look to best his mark of 8:39.15.
Each week the staff at MMQB will profile a NFL prospect that is not as well known. This week they highlighted Bryan Bennett, the quarterback who lost the quarterback competition to Marcus Mariota. It is awesome to see how mature Bennett is when it comes to his relationship with Mariota and the Ducks. He still cheers on Oregon when he watches the Ducks play and he hopes to see Mariota on the NFL field someday.
Tweet of the Day
<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p><a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/mockselection?src=hash">#mockselection</a> final vote: Dayton, Stanford, MIchigan St, Illinois, UCLA get in. BYU, St. John's out. Oregon could still be last one in.</p>— Stewart Mandel (@slmandel) <a href="https://twitter.com/slmandel/status/566269174217846784">February 13, 2015</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>