The Oregon men's basketball team finished second in the Pac-12 this year. Think about that for a minute. Think of all the drama of the offseason. Think of the eight contributing players from last year's team that the Ducks lost. Think of when, rightfully so at the time, the Ducks were picked to finish eighth in the conference.
Now look at Oregon's seeding for the upcoming Pac-12 tournaments. No, it's not a typo. No, you don't need to adjust your screen. The Oregon Ducks will be the No. 2 seed in next week's conference tournament, behind only Arizona, who finished the regular season 28-3 and 16-2 in Pac-12 play.
With the No. 2 seed, of course, comes a first round bye. The Ducks will get an extra day of rest before taking on the winner of the Colorado vs. Oregon State game on Wednesday. The Ducks will tip on Thursday night at 6:00 p.m. PT on Pac-12 Networks.
Oregon is 3-0 this year against Oregon State and Colorado.
What Dana Altman has done this year is nothing short of pure magic. Altman, who was already under his fair share of heat for Oregon's sexual assault scandal, took a group of guys who have for the most part never played together, and got them to win 23 games so far. To be honest, before the year started, I wouldn't have been surprised if the Ducks lost 23 games.
Have you followed Joseph Young on Twitter lately? The dude is on fire.
U thought we was number #8 but look at the duckies now #GoDucks— Joe Young (@JoeyBuckets3) March 7, 2015
Recently, Young guaranteed the Ducks were going dancing this year. Before the season, that type of prediction would have been laughable at best. But that was before Oregon finished the season on an absolute tear, winning nine of their last 10 games.
Just a few weeks ago, the Ducks had a 21.2 percent chance at making the tournament.That was when the Ducks were 14-7 and 4-4 in the Pac-12. Things were not looking good, but nobody had any real expectations surrounding this year's team, so we were all content with it. Then, Oregon finished the year 9-1, virtually locking up their spot in the NCAA tournament.
I have no further expectations for this season. As of today, Oregon was projected as an 8 seed in the Midwest region facing Dayton. If the Ducks won that game, they would likely face Kentucky. That's just not going to end well. But the fact that Oregon is even in this position? That's pretty special.
So let's all sit back and enjoy the ride. It will likely be brief, but I'll take an annual trip to the NCAA tournament over winning the NIT every day of the week. Plus, we've got to restart our tradition of losing to the eventual national champion.