Oregon basketball and head coach Dana Altman have needed to be creative over the last month. With N’Faly Dante and Nate Bittle out with injuries, the Ducks have reinvented themselves as a small and faster team on the floor and have been led by Jermaine Couisnard and Brennan Rigsby.
The Ducks went into this week looking for road wins against Washington and Washington State. Both are not easy places to play. The Ducks came away with a 76-74 win over the Huskies and were equally hot against Washington State on Sunday. Oregon shot better than 58 percent from the floor and close to 70 percent in the first half.
Altman watched as four players finished in double figures led by Brennan Rigsby. He finished with 18 points and was 4 for 5 from three-point range as the Ducks hit a season high 14 three-pointers in the 89-84 win over Washington State.
Oregon also led the game in rebounds, which is always a key with Altman. The Ducks had 28 rebounds to the Cougs 25. Oregon was also more efficient in turnovers with just 10 for the game. The team also had 18 assists, 5 steals, and 2 blocks in the victory. Oregon remains undefeated in Pac-12 play.
Mookie Cook did not have as much of an impact vs Washington State but did see the floor getting off one shot for two points. He has played in back-to-back games which should continue moving forward. I expect over the coming weeks that Bittle and Dante will also begin to work their way back into the lineup.
The Ducks also made some moves in the all-important NET rankings. In picking up two wins on the road, both counted as Quad 1 wins, which saw Oregon move from 61 to 52 following the win. If the NCAA Tournament started today, the Ducks would be a higher seed, but would be included in the field.
Oregon returns home for a single home game this week hosting the California Golden Bears. Tipoff is set for Saturday at 5pm Pacific Time.