The Husky Basketball Team Probably Is Who We Thought It Was

Look, I was pretty wiped out last night after that Bills/Chiefs game (not because of that, but just to give you a sense of approximately when I ended up packing it in and calling it a day), and I had zero interest in watching the Huskies play the Ducks in basketball.

For starters, who schedules a college basketball game at 7pm on a Sunday night? Does Eugene even have an airport? What time are the Huskies returning to Seattle? Do they spend the night in Oregon and return during the day today? What a dumb, idiotic, stupid conference we participate in.

Anyway, I kinda figured the Huskies would lose. I had an inkling that I might record it on DVR and watch it today, but I didn’t even bother, and I’m glad I didn’t. The Huskies lost 84-56, and it wasn’t even THAT close.

My good friend sent me the halftime stats while I was sleeping, and they’re pretty appalling: we were losing 48-13, we hit only 4/27 shots (1/12 from three-point), and Oregon had a 12-0 assist advantage. On the flipside, the Ducks were hitting an unsustainable 65.5% of their shots (8/12 from three-point), but that’s just about as bad as it gets in college. The Washington Generals had better-looking halves of basketball against the Harlem Globetrotters, for Christ’s sake!

It’s not uncommon for the complementary players on this team to have a bad night collectively; we actually see it regularly-enough to know this is why the Huskies – in spite of how they can look at times – are not a capital-T Tournament team. But, what we haven’t seen until now is what the Huskies look like when the complementary players AND Terrell Brown are having a bad night in tandem. Make no mistake, even if he was on fire and playing at his best, there’s no way Brown could’ve elevated this team to victory. But, for the first time I can remember all year, Brown really laid an egg (3/16 from the floor for 14 points, with 6 turnovers). The guy’s a stud, so we’ll all forgive him a bad game. But, clearly, he’s the glue holding this team together, and without him, we’d be among the worst teams in the country.

In retrospect, this is one of those games I could’ve seen myself getting really excited about. The Huskies were on a roll, they were getting better every month, and they were just coming off of an impressive victory against the Beavers. A win on the road against the Ducks could’ve been monumental in propelling this team the rest of the way. Instead, it’s a Falling Back To Earth moment, and it won’t be the last.

I guess credit is due to the Huskies for playing hard in the second half. We didn’t just roll over and die; we beat them 43-36 over that frame. You could chock it up to a flukey first half and still make an argument that the Huskies could theoretically hang with the Ducks. That’s probably true. But, it would’ve been more encouraging for me – as a fan of this team – to see everyone else rally around Terrell Brown when he’s having an off-night, pick him up, and find a way to lead this team to an unlikely road victory. Instead, everyone came out flat and we looked like the bad version of this team from non-conference play, with lots of hero ball and zero offensive creativity.

The good news is, a new week is upon us, and we have two winnable games at home against Colorado and Utah. The even-better news for me is that the last taste in my mouth is from our victory against the Beavers, so I get to pretend our loss to the Ducks didn’t even happen!