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Oregon State looks to move to .500 in the Pac-10 against Arizona

Today's game between the Beavers and Wildcats will feature two teams looking to move to 2-2 in the Pac-10 conference. 

The Beavers are under first-year head coach, and the Wildcats are under first-year interim head coach Russ Pennell, after the retirement of legendary coach Lute Olsen.

Craig Robinson has admiration for what Olsen accomplished with the Wildcats.

"It sure is a treat to be on the court that he coached on for such a long time," Robinson told the Tucson Citizen. "The rich tradition, the culture, you can just feel it as you walk through the door."

Oregon State beat USC by executing the Princeston-style offense against USC's man-to-man attack. Arizona State smothered the OSU offense with their zone attack, and the Wildcats hope to do the same. 

"They trap out of the zone, so we have to hang on to our guts,'' Robinson said of UA's zone. "We can't let it bother us.''

On Thursday night, Chase Budinger and Jamelle Horne combined for 35 points as Arizona pulled away from the Ducks by the score 67-52. The Wildcats limited the Ducks to 37 percent shooting and did not allow a player in double figures in holding Oregon to a season-low 52 points. In a game that Arizona never trailed, the Cats used a 9-0 burst midway through the opening half to build a lead for good - it eventually stretched to 21 points.

Now, let's meet UA's top players:

Junior forward Chase Budinger (pictured, right) is one of the best inside-men in the conference. He averages a Pac-10 fifth best 16.9 points per game, and collects an average of 6 rebounds per game. Believe it or not, Chase has been in a slump recently, and will be trying to match the 20 points he put up against Oregon on Thursday.

Junior forward Jordan Hill is a rebounding machine, collecting a Pac-10 best 12 rebounds per game. He's averaging a Pac-10 third best 18 points per game, but he only had nine on Thursday, as he was inconsistent for much of the game. Unlike Budinger, Hill isn't a three-point threat. His numbers are up from last season, when he averaged 13.7 points per game, and his freshman season, when he averaged 4.7. At this point, he looks to be a hot NBA prospect.

Sophomore forward Jamelle Horne averages nine points per game, and is an effective rebounder as well (5.5 per game). 

--Jake (jake.buildingthedam@gmail.com)