Washington State vs. Oregon Preview


Pac-12 play begins today, and the Oregon Ducks will go on the road to face the Washington State Cougars. The Cougars are 8-4, while the Ducks are 9-3; each team is looking to start out conference play on the right foot. This will be a close one for sure, and it’s probably the easiest opportunity for Dana Altman’s squad to win in a tough four game stretch to start the games in the Pac-12. After today’s game, the Ducks will look to fend off the Washington Huskies in what will be a hard-fought game to say the least.

Garrett Sim has been the most efficient player on this team so far this season and averages 12.8 points per game. His true shooting percentage is 73.2%, and he averages 1.45 points per shot. Washington State’s RPI is 118, while the Ducks are ranked as the 85th best team in the nation. This is no surprise given the disparity between these two teams when looking at efficiency, and Brock Motum’s 1.21 points per shot leads the team. The difference between the two teams’ most efficient players effectively shows the overall difference between these two teams in terms of overall efficiency. However, it should be noted that the Cougars are a better team than their RPI indicates. This will be a better game than people think, because Wazzu averages three more points per game than Oregon and is the better shooting team.

After essentially quitting on the Minnesota Gophers, Devoe Joseph has slid in nicely since his debut earlier this month and has replaced another quitter in Jabari Brown (left the team after just two games). Good riddance, I say, because Joseph leads the team with 14.3 points per game in six games and averages 1.7 steals per game. The Wazzu have star power in the form of Motum and Faisal Aden (15.3 PPG, 1.6 SPG) who scored 17 points in their victory over Pepperdine last week.

“As a whole, we’re not happy with the 9-3 start, but that’s not a terrible record,” junior E.J. Singler said. “We’re just excited for the Pac-12 season to start. I think we can do some really good things in the Pac-12.”

Oregon has won four of the last five meetings against the Cougars, and I expect another victory here for the Ducks. Gimme the over on 15 for Joseph and a win for the Ducks. I would also like to give a shoutout to Sim for being 13th in college basketball with an 87.2 FT%. Joseph set a career-high for rebounds in their last game in a 55-45 victory over Stephen F. Austin with eight boards to go with ten points. Expect more production out of this Duck and a 68-63 win over Washington State.

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