Oregon had a rocky start to the Pac 12 portion of their schedule. They had some bad losses, but redeemed themselves with wins at UCLA and against Arizona.
BYU has third highest-scoring offense in college basketball. Their non-conference schedule went pretty rough, but settled down once they starting playing West Coast Conference games. Many ‘bracketologists’ had them as one of the last four teams to get in. As a #10 seed that clearly was not the case.
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Oregon started the Pac 12 season off horrible (3-8), but they are playing well right now. They love to run and get the ball up and down the court as fast as possible. Joseph Young, UNLV transfer Mike Moser and Jason Calliste are Oregon’s scoring sources. Their only glaring flaw is their lack of rebounding. Moser is the only player who can rebound at all.
If you thought Oregon ran a fast-paced offense, BYU would blow your mind. They have even cracked 100 points four times this season. They are led by NBA prospect Tyler Haws. He might even be better than former BYU great Jimmer Fredette (I know, that’s high praise). He is usually the best player on the court. They can rebound as well as they can score. Kyle Collinsworth and Nate Austin can out-rebound nearly any front court in college basketball.
Oregon and BYU played back in December. Oregon won 100-96 in overtime, but had to come back from a double-digit deficit to win. Oregon’s Jason Calliste scored a career-best 31 points in the win. I expect another high scoring game, but I think BYU holds the lead this time. Tyler Haws will have a breakout tournament and will give Wisconsin a good game in the next round.
Prediction: #10 BYU Cougars
Bobby Roberts (otherwise known as Sweetbob) is the creator of ‘America’s White Boy’ and contributor at Project Shanks. His writing has been featured on ESPN’s ‘SportsNation’, Sports Illustrated’s Hot Clicks, Guyspeed, and various other sites. You can follow him on Twitter at @Sweetbob.