The Ducks’ athletic department made it official Sunday when it was announced that Mark Helfrich will be the next head coach of the Oregon football team. Oregon’s offensive-coordinator-turned-head-coach Helfrich promises to attack in all phases. Best of luck to Mr. Helfrich.
There’s a ton of basketball to get to, so let’s start with the first Pac-12 men’s hoops game between ranked teams since 2009. It went down in Westwood, but the Bruins couldn’t protect home court as No. 24 UCLA lost to No. 21 Oregon, 76-67. It wasn’t a good weekend for Bruins hoops on the men’s or women’s side. We’ll get to the women’s game at Cal later, and I won’t remind you about UCLA’s 26-point loss to Stanford, but there will be better weekends ahead for Cori Close and Ben Howland.
Arizona went in to Tempe and took care of business Saturday, as the ‘Cats went in attack mode vs. Jahii Carson to put him in foul trouble in a 71-54 win over Arizona State. Solomon Hill also sent a message with his jam over Jordan Bachynski in the opening moments of the game. Pretty nasty, huh?
Arizona State was able to keep it close for the better part of 30 minutes, but as Paola Boivin of the Arizona Republic writes, the Sun Devils couldn’t keep up with Arizona’s depth, and that’s what did the Surgin’ Sendeks in.
The Stanford men topped Cal 69-59 in the other Pac-12 rivalry game on the men’s side of things. Interestingly enough, it was the same score that Cal beat Stanford by last season at Haas Pavilion. Also interestingly enough, this was the second time Stanford had started out 1-3 in conference play under Johnny Dawkins and both times, they improved to 2-3 by beating Cal at home. David Lombardi of The Bootleg writes that Stanford hoops is now at a crossroads after beating Cal.
A couple of Pacific Northwest rivalry games on the women’s side – the Cougars lost to Washington… for the 36th straight time. The Cougs had their chances, but Lia Galdeira (who has been very money for Washington State this year, by the way) missed three free throw attempts with seven seconds left and her team trailing by five, and the Huskies were able to pull away after that. Eventually this streak has to end, right? Especially with the Cougs coming so close in recent years.
One state south, the Beavers made it five straight over the Ducks by beating Oregon 68-49 to get to 3-3 in conference play and 9-9 overall. The Ducks are having a rough season, on the other hand, as they are still winless in Pac-12 action.
Washington was successful on the women’s side, but the Utes made sure that didn’t transfer over to the men’s team, as the Runnin’ Utes picked up their first road win ever in Pac-12 play by beating the Huskies 74-65. Jordan Loveridge really cleaned up in the paint, scoring 17 points and grabbing five rebounds to help the Utah effort. The Utes women’s team also picked up its first Pac-12 win of the season by beating Arizona State 66-46, thanks to the 18 points, eight rebounds, three blocks and four steals from Michelle Plouffe.
The loss to the Runnin’ Utes knocked the Huskies from the ranks of the unbeatens in conference play. As Percy Allen puts it, the defense failed and offense faltered in the loss to Utah. Here’s Lorenzo Romar’s take on the game.
USC got its first win of the Bob Cantu era thanks to a late Aaron Fuller layup that gave the Trojans a 69-68 victory over Oregon State Saturday. Perhaps that super-tough non-conference schedule is paying dividends for the Men of Troy, who are now 3-3 in conference.
Big women’s game over in Haas Sunday afternoon, and No. 7 Cal protected its home court with a 70-65 win over No. 14 UCLA to take a share of the Pac-12 lead with Stanford.
‘Twas a great weekend for the other ranked team on the women’s side, as Colorado pounded Arizona 79-36 Sunday. ‘Twas the Buffs’ largest margin of victory in a conference game since 1995, and with four straight wins in Pac play, ’tis their longest winning streak in conference play since 2004. In the win over Arizona Sunday, Chucky Jeffery made her mark in the CU record book, picking up her 800th rebound. She is the first player in CU history with 1,400 points, 800 rebounds and 400 assists.