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Oregon State Basketball: Opponent Preview - Utah Utes (Game 10)

The Pac-12’s biggest enigma in Utah hosts the Beavers.

USC Trojans defeated the Utah Utes 64-46 during NCAA basketball game at Galen Center in Los Angeles. Photo by Keith Birmingham/MediaNews Group/Pasadena Star-News via Getty Images

Utah Utes (4-3, 1-2)

  • Head Coach: Larry Krystkowiak (10th Season, Overall: 175–129)
  • Points For: 69.3 PPG (T-261st)
  • Points Against: 63.9 PPG (50th)
  • Last Game/Streak: 64-46 Loss at USC (2L)

The Skinny

COLLEGE BASKETBALL: MAR 11 Pac-12 Tournament - Utah v Oregon State Photo by Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images
  • Alfonso Plummer (14.7 PPG, 3.4 RPG)
  • Timmy Allen (14.3 PPG, 5.7 RPG)
  • Mikael Jantunen (8.7 PPG, 4.5 RPG)
  • Rylan Jones (7.4 PPG, 4.3 APG)
  • Pelle Larsson (7.3 PPG, 2.1 APG)
  • Branden Carlson (6.9 PPG, 2.9 RPG)
  • Riley Battin (5.9 PPG, 4.0 RPG)
  • Ian Martinez (3.1 PPG, 1.4 RPG)

Switching up our “Opponent Preview” format just a bit, Utah is the next opponent on the slate for the Beavers, who dropped a crucial game to Stanford on Monday and will now have a quick turnaround with their travel to Salt Lake City and match-up with Utah over the course of two days.

The Utes are the Utes. They haven’t changed much in going on a decade now under the Rocky Mountains version of “Coach K”, but they have become more perimeter oriented in recent seasons, moving away from cornerstone pieces on the interior to outside talents like Alfonso Plummer and Timmy Allen handling more of the scoring load. They can be very difficult to defend in the half-court, but similar to Oregon State, they’ll play a methodical tempo that should operate on making the most of intelligent concepts and mismatches on the floor.

For the Beavers to grab this win, I really think they need to improve on the defensive end of the floor, where an emphasis on paint protection has to be better. Oregon State allowed Stanford to shoot 52% from the floor, as the Cardinal lived in the paint with both their bigs and guards. The Beavers are finding new pieces like Jarod Lucas to score off the bench more consistently, but these match-ups are decided on the defensive end. Wayne Tinkle’s group just simply needs to do better.

Don’t Forget About...Alfonso Plummer - The 6’ 1” senior guard is using his potential last campaign to emerge as a possible all-conference talent in the Pac-12. Consistency still eludes him at times, but when he gets going from behind the arc, he’s a remarkable sharpshooter.

Game Info

  • Date: Wednesday, January 6th
  • Time: 8:00 PM PT
  • Location: Jon M. Huntsman Center (Salt Lake City, Utah)
  • Coverage: ESPNU