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Wazzu Initial Thoughts

They're good.

If you haven't seen this team play, take my word for it. They've racked up 16 wins and 3 losses, their losses coming against Utah, UCLA, and Stanford. They've posted wins over teams such as Gonzaga, USC, and Arizona in OT, and will have a showdown on Saturday against the Ducks.

I had a chance to watch last Saturday's Apple Cup, in which the Cougs dismantled the Huskies, 75-47. They've now won three straight meetings with their interstate rivals, and have yet to lose at home.

Wazzu's big men are perhaps the most dangerous weapons on their team. They are all great rebounders who have developed the outside shot. Almost any of them could knock down a baseline jumper on a long rebound.

Against the Huskies, Washington State was clearly dominating the game at half, but only was leading by 11 at the break. Part of this could be due to the defensive tenacity they possess, or the fact that Ryan Anderson got hot at the end of the half.  They left no doubt and brought it in the second half, translating their 11 point halftime lead into a 28 point victory.

The Cougs don't give up points in transition. They get back to the right spots, and are "fundamentally sound" to the point where they don't give up many baskets. They have the 19th efficient defense in the league, and it shows: they give up less than 60 points per game.

The Cougars are lead by junior guard Derrick Low, a player that committed to Washington State without ever setting foot on campus. This indirectly tells you a lot about the program that Tony Bennett (along with the help of his father, Dick) have put together at Washington State.

The Cougars and Beavers tip off at 7:00 p.m. P.T.

Update [2007-1-25 0:15:35 by Jake]: I don't know what I was thinking, but the game isn't on TV, at least not that I know off. Sorry for making that mistake.

Go Beavers!

--JB--