Preview Oregon at Washington


There is a rivalry game on tap tonight at 10:00 ET on ESPN2 between the Washington Huskies and our very own Oregon Ducks. The Ducks have won six of their last seven games and are 10-3, while Washington knocked down Oregon State to 10-3 in their last game and also started Pac-12 play with a win.

The only star power in this game will be provided by Huskies guard Tony Wroten who leads the Pac-12 with 16.8 points per game. Garrett Sim is one of the most efficient players in the country, and Aziz N’Diaye while Desmond Simmons will be cleaning up the boards all night long. The Huskies are a top 50 team, but they haven’t been able to play to their potential this season. They have the 48th best SRS in the country, while the Ducks are 90th in this statistic from College Basketball Reference.

The Huskies need to stop turning the ball over, and Tony Wroten- the team’s leader in PER- has a turnover rate of 21.2%. N’Diaye has the third highest rebounding percentage in the conference, but he has a TOV% of 19.0. C.J. Wilcox has taken care of the ball and is one of the least turnover-prone players, and he’s also averaging 14.6 points per game.

Although the Huskies possess a good offense, their defense is one of the worst in college basketball. Simmons, N’Diaye, and Wroten are the only players on the team who are good defensive players. Brett Kingma is the only weakness on an otherwise solid Ducks defense, but they will have to guard three of the top scorers in the conference.

Sim will be the X-Factor in this game for Oregon, and he’s been one of the most valuable players in the conference. The unheralded guard leads the team with 403 minutes played and has a 22.2 PER. He leads the conference with a 73.8% true shooting percentage and is fifth in the Pac with 2.2 Win Shares based on terrific offensive play. Sim is a below-average defensive player, but we can ignore that and admire his efficient play. The defense won’t matter much, because there honestly aren’t any great defensive players in this game.

Olu Ashaolu came out of nowhere with a dominant performance against Washington State, but I wouldn’t expect too much out of him tonight. He’s a solid bench player, but he’s really only an average player overall. Ashaolu commits more turnovers than he should, and he’s a subpar offensive player overall. However, he is underrated defensively and is the team’s best rebounder. The latter isn’t a title that carries much pride, but he averages 4.8 rebounds per game and has a higher rebounding rate than E.J. Singler.

This game will end up a close, high scoring affair. The Huskies will pull this one out, and they have more talent overall. I think Aziz N’Diaye puts in a very good performance and gives the Huskies an 86-81 win in a rivalry matchup.

You can follow me on Twitter @SorianoJoe and Autzen Zoo @Autzen_Zoo.