Game info: 1 p.m. Saturday at Matthew Knight Arena
TV/Radio: FSN NW/KJR-950 AM
Record: 11-11, 4-6 Pac-10. RPI rank: 142.
Previous game: Beat Washington State 69-43.
Stats/schedule: Click here.
Prediction: Picked to finish last in the Pac-10 in a media poll.
Coach: Dana Altman is 11-11 in his first season with the Ducks. He is 421-254 overall in 22 years.
Series: UW leads 184-103 in a series that began in 1904. UW coach Lorenzo Romar is 12-6 against Oregon.
Last meeting: Freshman guard Terrence Ross scored a career-high 25 points and Isaiah Thomas finished with 20 points, nine assists and six rebounds to lead Washington to an 87-69 victory on Jan. 6 at Edmundson Pavilion. It was the first game for UW without starting guard Abdul Gaddy, who suffered a season-ending knee injury.
PLAYERS TO WATCH:
— Junior forward Joevan Catron (right) has played in 116 games for the Ducks and he’s having a career season. He’s averaging 15.8 points, which is about eight points more than he did as a junior two seasons ago in his last complete year. He played just four games last season due to a back injury and received a medical waiver to return for a fith season. Catron is a Most Improved Player of the Year candidate. He’s an undersized big man at 6 foot 6, but he’s 245 pounds and uses his body well. Catron finished with 20 points and 10 rebounds against the Huskies last month.
— Sophomore E.J. Singler is the only Oregon player who has started every game. he leads the Ducks in blocks (0.9 bpg), ranks second in scoring (11.0) and rebounding (5.8) and third in field goal percentage (44.6 percent) and three-point field goal percentage (34.7.). Singler managed just six points against UW in the first meeting.
— Junior guard Malcolm Armstead has moved to the bench, but he’s still one of the leaders in average minutes played (25.8) and points (7.1). He has 108 steals and ranks ninth on Oregon’s all-time list. Armstead has led the Ducks in assists in 11 games this season.
— The Ducks are surging and certainly they’re better than anyone believed before the season. Following a six-game losing streak that included a sweep on the road at the Washington schools, Oregon has a 4-2 record.
— FSN analyst Marques Johnson playfully called Altman a “junk yard coach” because “he’ll throw everything including the kitchen sink at you.” It’s true. Midway through his first season, Altman has installed a variety of offensive and defensive schemes. At times, the Ducks will press full-court defensively. They’ll trap in the corners, on the baseline and on the sideline. They’ll fall back into a 2-3 zone. It worked for a half in the first meeting against Washington. Oregon led 47-46 in the second half and the game was tied 51-51 before the Huskies took control with a 22-8 run.
— In their previous game, Oregon held Washington State to a season-low 25.9 percent (14 of 54) shooting from the field and 16 percent (4 of 25) on three-pointers. In Pac-10 games, the Ducks have allowed opponents an average of 67.5 points.
— Freshman Jonathan Loyd, a 5-8 and 160-pound point guard, is the smallest starter in the Pac-10. He’ came off the bench early in the season and is one of two players who has started every Pac-10 game.
— Transfers Jay-R Stowbridge, a senior guard, and junior forward Tyrone Nared are making an immediate impact. Nared, who played at Monroe College in New York last season, moved into the starting lineup the past four games. He scored 14 points against California. Stowbridge, who played at Jacksonville State and Nebraska, has started seven games this season. He’s been coming off the bench lately and is averaging 8.7 points.
— When Oregon fired coach Ernie Kent and hired Altman, four players transferred including: Drew Wiley (Boise State), Josh Crittle (Central Florida), Matt Humphrey (Boston College) and Jamil Wilson (Marquette). Michael Dunigan, perhaps the Ducks best returning player, chose to play in Israel and senior LeKendric Longmire was ruled academically ineligible. Only five Ducks played against the Huskies last season. Oregon has 10 scholarship players on the roster.
F – Tyrone Nared, 6-8, 210, Jr., 5.0 ppg., 3.7 rpg.
F – E.J. Singler, 6-6, 210, So., 11.0, 5.8
F – Joevan Catron, 6-6, 245, Sr., 15.8, 6.6
G – Garrett Sim, 6-1, 181, Jr., 8.3, 2.4
G – Jonathan Loyd, 5-8, 160, Fr., 5.1, 2.5 apg
— Four of the five Washington starters will enjoy a height advantage against Oregon, which rolls out a small team. It’s imperative the Huskies slow down Catron who bullied them in the paint in the first meeting. His conditioning is suspect and UW forward Matthew Bryan-Amaning (above) was able to beat him down the floor once or twice for easy baskets. Catron, Oregon’s best player, doesn’t play more than 30 minutes. When he tires, the Ducks rely on the dribble penetration from their guards to create scoring opportunities. That’s where the Husky guards come in. Sims had a nice game against UW earlier and finished with 13 points on 5-for-7 shooting. Granted a couple of those shots were long, lucky attempts that somehow fell through the net. Still, Washington has to do a better job than it has recently with its perimeter defense.