After a solid start and 13-0 record to begin the 2013 season Oregon has dropped five of their last seven games and according to NCAA Tournament prognosticators from ESPN and CBS Sportsline the Ducks as of this week are barely hanging on when it comes to even playing in March. Of course, there is enough season left that Oregon can make a move back toward the middle of the seedings. Keep in mind that Oregon is not the only team having issues at this point in the season, specifically in the win column. If you look around the country Duke and Ohio State, who are usually in the Top 10 have fallen off the Top 10 map. and are nearly out of the Associated Press Top 25. With four losses the Buckeyes are ranked 23rd this week.
As it stands right now both ‘Bracketologists’, Jerry Palm from CBS Sports and Joe Lunardi from ESPN have the Ducks as 10 and 11 seeds respectively. ESPN has Oregon playing in a bracket along with Michigan, Villanova and top seed Syracuse in the East Bracket. CBS sees the Ducks facing Kentucky, Creighton, Connecticut and top seed Michigan State in the Midwest Bracket. At this point I agree with these predictions.
The opportunity for the chance at a Top 5 seed is gone for Oregon. I believe the best they could do is a 6 right now. Of course, that means getting on a Pac-12 winning streak and taking care of business in the Pac-12 Tournament. Upcoming games against Arizona, as well as tomorrow night’s game against UCLA could go a long way in determining their fate come NCAA Tournament time.
Oregon is home this week at Matthew Knight Arena to face the UCLA Bruins Thursday, 6pm PT(ESPN2) and USC Trojans Saturday, 5pm PT(Pac-12 Networks).