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Previews of Men’s Hoops January 12-13 by Dane Miller


Posted on January 12, 2022

  By Dane Miller, SportsPac12

Previews of Men’s Hoops January 12-13 by Dane MillerThe Conference had its first major shake up of the season this week when Stanford beat the previously undefeated USC at the Maples Pavilion.

The victory shifted the needle for the Cardinal’s overall chances, drawing the nation’s attention to Harrison Ingram in the process.

The real freshman is on his way as a lottery pick and appears as a lock for the Pac-12 Freshman of the Year after losing 21 to the Trojans.

Tuesday’s drama sets up the showdowns for Wednesday and Thursday.

As the conference race is in full swing and nearly all programs come back from their breaks, the results of the next two days will start to shape the picture as March draws closer.

I have a preview of all five games here and my picks appear at the bottom.

Previews of Men’s Hoops January 12-13 by Dane MillerPreviews of Men’s Hoops January 12-13 by Dane MillerCalifornia to Washington

Alaska Airlines Arena, Seattle, WA
wednesday 12 january
7:00 p.m. PT, Pac-12 network

In the only Pac-12 game on Wednesday, the Bears travel to Seattle to face the Huskies.

The game against Mike Hopkins’ team is a litmus test for California. A win would indicate the program’s growth in Mark Fox’s third year, while a loss would be a cold dose of reality.

The Bears are the strongest shooting and rebounding team, but UW’s zone defense generates turnovers and could be a problem for Fox.

Previews of Men’s Hoops January 12-13 by Dane Miller
Terrell Brown Jr. of Washington | Washington athletics

Shooting down offensive rebounds is how Colorado handled the Husky Zone, a game plan California are sure to emulate.

In defense, the Bears man-to-man must contain Terrell Brown Jr. The goalie was limited to 4 of 16 from the field in Boulder, destroying the Dawgs’ offensive flow.

Wait for Cal to stay glued to his defenders and extend his defense past the three-point line to disrupt Washington’s pace.

In a clash of defense-focused programs, the first team to score 60 points will likely come away with the win.

Previews of Men’s Hoops January 12-13 by Dane MillerPreviews of Men’s Hoops January 12-13 by Dane MillerStanford in Washington State

Friel Court at Beasley Coliseum, Pullman, WA
Thursday January 13
2:00 p.m. PT, ESPNU

FAfter securing their first victory over a Top 5 team since 2008, the Cardinal is looking to build on his momentum with Pullman.

Winning at home is one thing, but getting the job done on the road is a whole different story.

The Tree faces a team from Washington State who are struggling to position themselves for a comprehensive bid, with a roster that knows a home loss would erode that goal.

Generally balanced on paper, the Cougars have an advantage in two key categories: blocked shots and committed turnovers.

Previews of Men’s Hoops January 12-13 by Dane Miller
Harrison Ingram of Stanford | USA TODAY

If WSU stays stable in the paint and takes care of the ball, Stanford could find themselves fighting from behind throughout the game.

Kyle Smith’s side are 5-0 when posting 14 or more assists, demonstrating the effectiveness of playing basketball as a team.

The key to watch is the assists-to-goals ratio on the ground in Washington State, where “hero ball” isolation could cause problems for the Cougars.

But Smith knows that sharing the rock is the ticket to victory, and his team should get the job done with offensive rebounds and outside shots.
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Previews of Men’s Hoops January 12-13 by Dane MillerPreviews of Men’s Hoops January 12-13 by Dane MillerOregon at # 3 in UCLA

Pauley Pavilion, Los Angeles, California
Thursday January 13
6:30 p.m. PT, ESPN

IIn the Pac-12 game of the day, Oregon heads to the Pauley Pavilion to face the UCLA No.3. The Bruins will be fanless, which will take away some of the appeal of the game.

But the Duck-Bruin rivalry has produced several instant classics over the past decade, and the absence of fans won’t rule out the potential for another historic arrival.

Analytically, UO is outperformed on paper at every level. The Bruins have the advantage in points per game, three-point percentage, rebounds per night, assists per game, turnovers per game and blocked shots.

Previews of Men’s Hoops January 12-13 by Dane Miller
Will Richardson from Oregon | Leon Neuschwander for The Oregonian / OregonLive

But the Ducks have a slight field goal percentage advantage. That could open up a slice of daylight that Oregon could take advantage of.

A hot night in the field combined with effective doses from Dana Altman’s area press program could lead to UO upheaval.

Still, the Ducks may have to play an almost perfect game to do so, with turnovers leading to quick break points from start to finish.

A win, however, would revive Oregon’s chances of reaching the NCAA tournament as an overall team.

Previews of Men’s Hoops January 12-13 by Dane MillerPreviews of Men’s Hoops January 12-13 by Dane MillerColorado at # 6 Arizona

McKale Center, Tucson, Arizona
Thursday January 13
8:00 p.m. PT, FS1

TThe Buffs travel to the McKale Center where they are 0-9 in the Pac-12 era and without a win since the arena was built in 1973.

In fact, the last time Colorado beat Arizona in Tucson, Dwight Eisenhower was the president and the Beatles had yet to release their debut album.

Faced with the best offense in the country, CU must keep pace with Tommy Lloyd’s Wildcats. With multiple weapons in each position, Arizona does it differently in each game.

Previews of Men’s Hoops January 12-13 by Dane Miller
Christian Koloko from Arizona | Christopher Hook / Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Christian Koloko can leave if left unchecked, Azuolas Tubelis is a nightmare of confrontation, Bennedict Mathurin can put 30 without a problem and Kerr Kriisa can rain three from anywhere.

And that’s without mentioning Mr. Do-Everything, Dalen Terry.

The only way for the Buffaloes to achieve victory is to force UA into a fight. The Wildcats are too often sloppy with the ball and sometimes treat defense as an option.

This leaves the Cats vulnerable to a team with active defense and hot offensive shooters.

But in a rivalry clash in front of a bustling crowd, Arizona should run its business.

Previews of Men’s Hoops January 12-13 by Dane MillerPreviews of Men’s Hoops January 12-13 by Dane MillerState of Oregon at No. 5 USC

Galen Center, Los Angeles, California
Thursday January 13
8:00 p.m. PT, ESPNU

TTrojans must bounce back after leaving one against Stanford.

Controlling almost the entire game, USC cooled off in the last five minutes and couldn’t hit enough free throws in the downturn.

But back in the friendly enclosure of the Galen Center, Andy Enfield should have his team ready to go.

The odd start time of 2:00 p.m. PT on Tuesday gives way to a more traditional 8:00 p.m. tip on Thursday evening. The mojo should be back in high gear, and it wouldn’t be a surprise if this game turns into a blowout.

Previews of Men’s Hoops January 12-13 by Dane Miller
USC’s Boogie Ellis | Yamashita / USA TODAY Sports

OSU’s Jarod Lucas was unable to connect at depth on Monday, raising fears the junior was in the middle of a cold shooters streak.

His production on the pitch is the main X factor in this game, where a good night out from Lucas could be a game-changer.

Yet even though the sniper is hot, Enfield’s roster is poised to prove the farm loss was nothing more than fluke.

Look for USC length to generate turnovers and transition buckets, with Evan Mobley knocking down a threesome throughout the game.


Dane’s Play Picks January 12-13


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