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Husky Men's Basketball

The latest news and analysis on Husky men's hoops.

February 14, 2007 at 9:05 AM

Gameday reading

Ten or so hours until tipoff, so here’s some reading to keep you busy until then.
First, here’s our preview today focusing on the Huskies being a different team from what they were for the last meeting on Jan. 20.
As I tried to explain in the story, the Huskies might have felt the absence of Spencer Hawes more keenly against the Cougars than any other opponent because of the way WSU plays defense.
The Cougars like to double the post to force the big players to give it up. One of Hawes’ greatest strengths, meanwhile, is his passing. UW’s gameplan that day was built around Hawes and thwarting those double teams. When Hawes was suddenly out, the game plan pretty much went for naught.
Also, once Hawes was out, the Cougars concentrated their interior defense on Jon Brockman not worrying much that UW’s other big men would beat them. But with both Hawes and Brockman, they’ll have to leave one single-covered to double the other, and obviously leave someone else open on the perimeter
“You’ve got to be able to pass out of it quickly and make quick decisions to score,” Hawes said. “I think we’ve improved in that.”
Tonight, we’ll see how much.
Also, here is a preview story from Glenn Kasses of the Spokesman-Review
Glenn makes the point that UW’s backcourt has struggled against WSU’s defense in recent games, and that was certainly true the last game. Justin Dentmon had maybe his worst game of the season in the first meeting going 1-6 with one assist and five points in 30 minutes. Conversely, Dentmon played well against WSU last year, including a 16-point game in Pullman, so maybe he’ll draw on that history tonight.
Here, also, is Glenn’s blog for a good overview of all things Cougar.
Here’s a story from the Oregonian on the wealth of big men in the Pac-10 this year with much of its focus on Hawes.
This Pac-10 notebook from the Arizona Daily Star makes the point we’ve made here, as well, that Washington’s schedule is one of the biggest things it has in its favor in making an NCAA Tournament run. That’s not saying it’s not really hard, just that if the Huskies can win some games the rest of the way, the quality of the opponents they will have beaten will speak loudly. Easier said than done, however.
Here’s a story from the Tucson Citizen about Arizona’s NCAA chances that also sheds a favorable light on UW if you read between the lines. The story makes the point that finishing strongly is one of the most important faces the Selection Committee considers. That’s another one that UW still controls, having won five of its last six.

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