Well, it wasn’t like any long-term Duck fan didn’t see this coming, but here we go again.
The Ducks, who started 5-0 in conference and sit at the top of the Pac, were humbled 86-70 in Boulder, a place that has been nothing short of a house of horrors since Oregon and Colorado began playing annually.
Dana Altman, the unquestioned Dean of Pac-12 coaches and a man that has taken Oregon Basketball to unprecedented heights, has only one win in Boulder in his entire tenure in Eugene.
Colorado started off on a tear, but Oregon was able to weather the storm and actually took a lead of their own midway through the first half.
The Buffaloes took control again as halftime approached, but once again Oregon battled its way back, closing the gap.
Then, Colorado put the nail in coffin halfway through the second half and this time, there was no gas left in Oregon’s tank.
Looking at the brighter side of things, however, the Ducks are continuing to get healthier, even if it’s a slow and steady process.
Thursday marked the first time all season that Mookie Cook, N’Faly Dante, and Nate Bittle had all seen the floor on the same night. Dante is continuing to regain his strength and stamina, and thus hasn’t been quite the force he was before, but is getting there. Cook continues to find his place in the rhythm that the team has built this year and Bittle (pardon the pun) was just getting his feet wet.
Still, this bodes well with the consistent later-season runs that Altman-led teams have displayed in years past, and potentially sets them up to be peaking as March approaches.
Oregon has a matinee matchup with Utah in Salt Lake City, by contrast a place that has actually been quite friendly to them over the years.