So, on Thursday night, the Bruins were flat in the second half, but they managed to get lucky and force overtime, only to lost to the Ducks in the end. Now, tonight, UCLA hosts the Oregon State Beavers.
This year’s Oregon State team is nothing like last year’s Beaver basketball team, which went 20-13. So far this season, the Beavs are just 3-12 and they’ve won just one of their first five conference games. That win came against Utah and the other two came against Portland State and Nicholls.
On Thursday night at the Galen Center, Wayne Tinkle’s squad lost to Southern Cal, 81-71. To be sure, they narrowly lost to Oregon in their previous game, 78-76, but I don’t believe tonight’s game will be that close. I’m fairly sure Mick Cronin will make sure the Bruins come to play tonight as a response to how they played on Thursday.
Let’s look at the Oregon State starting five.
Not surprisingly, the Beavers’ top two scorers are the team’s only two starters returning from last season. Junior guard Jarod Lucas leads Oregon State with an average of 14.3 points per game while senior Warith Alatishe is averaging 12.3 points per game. Alatishe is the team leader in assists with 71.
Junior guard Dashawn Davis is third on the team with an average of 9.4 ppg. Davis is the team in both assists and turnovers. So, look for him to be the guy OSU turns to try to both stop the Bruins and get their offense moving.
Rounding out the starting five are senior center Roman Silva and junior guard Dexter Akanno. Neither of whom seem to contribute much. How inconsequential has Silva been for the Beavers? Well, despite being a seven-footer, he has fewer blocked shots and averages fewer points than Ahmad Rand who is listed as 6’8” tall and who is averaging three minutes per game less than Silva. I won’t be surprised to see Rand play more than Silva tonight.
As far as Akanno goes, he may not get the start tonight even though he started against the Trojans. The Beavers lost guard Gianni Hunt for the season when Hunt decided to take a mental health break and put basketball on pause indefinitely earlier this week. So, not only is Hunt not available off the bench, but his departure has left Tinkle looking for a replacement. Looking at the statline from Thursday night’s game, Akanno may be the best available from a bad bench.
On paper, the Bruins should blow the Beavers out tonight. That said, they should have been able to beat the Ducks on Thursday. Instead, they were flat and, ultimately, blew their slim five-point halftime lead in the second half and overtime.
Should UCLA be capable of beating this Oregon State squad even if the Bruins are sleepwalking? Yeah, probably. It would be nice to see the Bruins make a statement tonight, even if they are just playing a bad Beaver team.
TuneIn.com now has UCLA’s games listed as “premium” content. So, rather than using TuneIn, you can just listen through the official website like we have done with the small sports for a long time in order to listen to Josh Lewin and Tracy Murray call today’s game, but why would you want to? Yes, you guessed it! National treasure Bill Walton is working the game tonight with Ted Robinson on the Pac-12 Networks. How could you not want to listen to Big Red? In case you don’t, just be sure to right-click on it so that you can open up another tab and have it going while you chat in the comments below.
This is your Oregon State Beavers at #3 UCLA Bruins game thread.
Opponent: Oregon State Beavers (3-12, 1-4)
Series Record: UCLA leads, 99-40
When: 7:30 pm PT, Saturday, January 15, 2021
Where: Pauley Pavilion, Los Angeles, CA
TV: Pac-12 Networks with Ted Robinson and Bill Walton
Live Stream: Pac-12.com and the Pac-12 Now app
Radio:AM 1150 in Los Angeles with Josh Lewin and Tracy MurraySatellite Radio: SiriusXM Ch. 84 (UCLA Call)
Live Stats: UCLA StatBroadcast
Game Notes:UCLAOregon State
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