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Husky Men's Basketball

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

December 9, 2008 at 9:46 AM

A look ahead

With the football news calming down a little bit we’ll try to get back to a more regular presence here on the basketball blog.
We’ll begin by looking at what this week holds for UW, which is actually nothing but finishing finals until a home game with Portland State on Sunday at 5 p.m. The middle two weeks in December are often a slower time for UW with finals finishing and the beginning of winter break, and UW plays just one game from now until Dec. 20.
Portland State, however, looms maybe the most challenging game left of UW’s non-conference contests.
PSU, coached by former UW assistant Ken Bone, is 6-1. The Vikings haven’t played any real elite opponents yet, but among its wins is an 81-76 victory over the same Portland team that upset the Huskies in the opener.
The most intriguing player on PSU’s roster is former Husky Phil Nelson, who is in his first season playing for the Vikings after sitting out last season after transferring from UW.
He’s been a little erratic so far, scoring 16 points or more in three straight games before going scoreless in 31 minutes Saturday against Seattle University. For the season, he is averaging 11 points, three rebounds and shooting 36.8 percent from the field.
Here’s a story from PSU’s official athletic web site detailing how Nelson and two other transfers — guard Dominic Waters and forward Jamie Jones — have been keys to the team’s fast start.
However, PSU got some bad news last week when it was learned that JC transfer center Donatas Visockis has been declared ineligible.
PSU has one other UW connection besides Nelson and Bone in assistant coach Curtis Allen, who played for UW from 2001-04.
Portland State has generally been picked to win the Big Sky this season. But the Vikings may have some competition in the team that will follow them on UW’s schedule — Eastern Washington, which comes to town Dec. 20. The Eagles, generally considered a lower-division team in the Big Sky this year, are off to a surprising 6-2 start that includes a win at Portland.

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