With its win over USC on Saturday, Oregon clinched its second outright conference championship since 1945. The ninth-ranked Ducks (25-6) went 14-4 to win earn the top seed in the tournament at MGM Grand Garden Arena. Oregon will have a first-round bye before facing either Stanford or Washington in the quarterfinals at noon on Thursday.

With a Top 10 ranking and a Pac-12 regular season championship, there is not much buzz surrounding the Ducks and a possible No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament, although there should be.

Oregon Ducks
(AP Photo/Chris Pietsch)

Jerry Palm of CBS Sports projects Oregon as a No. 2 seed, and ESPN’s Joe Lunardi has them as a third seed. Oregon, which is No. 4 in the RPI rankings, can boost its tournament résumé this week at the Pac-12 Tournament in Las Vegas.

Oregon head coach Dana Altman did not want to talk about a No. 1 seed yet, saying….“The guys on the committee work their tails off, so I would never second-guess them,” he said. “We need to go win the (Pac-12) tournament. If we win the tournament, we’re one of the teams they’ll probably talk about. They’ve got a real tough job, and those guys spend a lot of time getting it right.”

The Pac-12 has had a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament in nine of the past 18 seasons. Of the five Pac-12 teams that earned a No. 1 seed in the NCAA field since the conference tournament resumed in 2002, three of them won the conference tournament.

Since the current NCAA seeding format began in 1979, the Pac-12 has had 15 No. 1 seeds and only Washington in 2005 finished 14-4 in conference play. The other 14 top seeds all won at least 15 conference games.

So with history against them, here are reasons why the Ducks deserve the ranking:

  1. No. 4 RPI
  2. No. 6 SOS
  3. 10 Top 50 wins (2nd most in all of college basketball)
  4. 19 Top 100 wins (3rd most in all of college basketball)
  5. Zero bad losses (RealTimeRPI.com)

Add in the mix of senior leadership (Elgin Cook, Chris Boucher and Dwayne Benjamin) the potential Pac-12 Player of the Year (Dillon Brooks) and a stud freshman who makes more than 42% from behind the arc (Tyler Dorsey), the Ducks have a team that can compete for a Final Four berth. Their résumé speaks for itself, and if they win the Pac-12 Conference Tournament they should be guaranteed a No. 1 seed. If they fail to bring home the crown, they should still be in the conversation for a top seed.

We don’t have to wait too long, Selection Sunday is less than a week away. Don’t miss the Pac-12 Tournament, which tips off Wednesday, March 9th in Las Vegas.

 

Dan SchalkNCAABPac-12Recent Posts#NCAAB,#Oregon,Oregon Ducks,Pac-12With its win over USC on Saturday, Oregon clinched its second outright conference championship since 1945. The ninth-ranked Ducks (25-6) went 14-4 to win earn the top seed in the tournament at MGM Grand Garden Arena. Oregon will have a first-round bye before facing either Stanford or Washington in the...Why go anywhere else for sports and entertainment?