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Husky Men's Basketball Blog

Seattle Times staff reporter Bob Condotta provides a running commentary on the Huskies.

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July 12, 2008 8:01 PM

Schedule completed

Posted by Bob Condotta

Washington's basketball schedule for the 2008-09 season is now complete, and as noted here the other day, the final addition isn't a sexy one. Unable to finalize deals with some bigger-name teams, such as Georgia Tech --- which apparently backed out --- UW filled its final opening with Texas Southern, a home game on Dec. 7.

So that means the non-conference schedule looks like this:

Nov. 15 --- at Portland
Nov 17 --- CBE Classic at home
Nov. 19 --- CBE Classic at home
Nov. 24 --- vs. Kansas in CBE Classic in Kansas City
Nov. 26 --- vs. Syracuse or Florida in CBE Classic
Nov. 29 --- Pacific
Dec. 4 --- Oklahoma State in Big 12/Pac-10 Hardwood Classic
Dec. 7 --- Texas Southern
Dec. 14 --- Portland State
Dec. 20 --- Eastern Washington
Dec. 23 --- Lehigh
Dec. 28 --- Montana
Dec. 30 --- Morgan State

The Pac-10 schedule looks like this:

Jan. 3 --- at Washington State
Jan. 8 --- Stanford
Jan. 10 --- Cal
Jan. 15 --- at Oregon
Jan. 17 --- at Oregon State
Jan. 22 --- USC
Jan. 24 --- UCLA
Jan. 29 --- at Arizona
Jan. 31 --- at Arizona State
Feb. 5 --- at Cal
Feb. 7 --- at Stanford
Feb. 12 --- Oregon State
Feb. 14 --- Oregon
Feb. 19 --- at UCLA
Feb. 21 --- at USC
Feb. 26 --- Arizona State
Feb. 28 --- Arizona
March 8 --- Washington State
March 11-14 --- Pac-10 Tournament at Staples Center in Los Angeles

As noted the other day, UW is guaranteed to play Kansas in the CBE regardless of what happens in the first two games in that tournament as the tournament format has been changed automatically sending the four host schools to the semi-finals.

Including the Pac-10 tournament, the Huskies are guaranteed 31 games.

Now that the schedule is completed, season-ticket holders should begin getting renewal notices soon, one reason the school couldn't wait much longer to fill that last opening.


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Posted by pdxdawg

1:44 AM, Jul 13, 2008

I'd still like to see Gonzaga on the schedule. How can you put teams like Eastern Wa., Portland, and Portland State on your schedule, yet not be willing to play the best local out of conference teams. What makes this a bitter pill to swallow is that Gonzaga wanted to continue the rivalry with us, but we refused. Come on Romar, enough with the gimmes; I want to see us schedule top OOC programs like we do in football. if nothing else, it'll give us good experience going into Pac 10 play, not too mention look good come Selection Sunday in March. I like seeing Kansas and Syracuse, but the comittee is not going to be impressed with wins over Montana, Morgan St., Texas Southern, etc.

Posted by tom ross

6:15 AM, Jul 13, 2008

Once again, we will see a very positive record goiing into conference play and everyone will think 'well,this is it, we've gotten over the hump.' Then, we will see just how wrong that is. Why does the coaching staff INSIST on such a cream puff schedule? It does not prepare the team for any sort of tough confernce test.

Posted by G

8:16 AM, Jul 13, 2008

because it helps the team bond and get chemistry as well as help the fresman and newcomers get used to division 1 college level basketball. although i do admit its not like playing in the conferece/league season. its unrealistic to think you could actually schedule ten or thirteen medium to high quality opponents. some have to be cupcakes...

Posted by old dawg

8:32 AM, Jul 13, 2008

Last year's losses to Pitt (and wasn't it OSU?) certainly didn't leave anyone licking their chops at the prospect of the damage the dawgs could do in the pac10.

There's no way for those responsible for the schedule to please everyone. Especially since you can only schedule those that agree to play you where and when you want.

The fb team certainly could use a lighter schedule right now. And in the post Roy era, the bb team could use one as well. Still, no Zags?

I would like to to see a rp rating that would help rather than hinder come tournament selection time without a lengthy series of games in which the Dawgs are significant underdawgs. That's drawing a pretty fine line.

And I'd like to start seeing some growth in the program that leads to justified optimism about the coming post-Brockman era. After a series of underwhelming performances by Nelson, Oliver, et al, a decided change in direction is sorely needed. I'm really hoping that the new guys provide a much needed transfusion of talent and energy, not to mention fulfilled potential.

Posted by kramer

9:23 AM, Jul 13, 2008

what about pacific?

Posted by Scram

10:18 AM, Jul 13, 2008

Are you all serious? We'll play Kansas and either Syracuse or Florida (I'm banking on Florida). Oklahoma State should be decent this year. It is bad that they don't play the Zags but I'm guessing that they will renew that game in the next few years.

Regardless of our non-conf schedule, if the dawgs get it done in the PAC we'll be dancing. The goal should and will be win as many PAC 10 games as you can and get in a few good tests in the non-conf schedule which is what they've done.

Posted by ZaggyNasty

11:55 AM, Jul 13, 2008

LOL @ ROMARS SCHEDULING HAAHHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAAHAHAHAH

Posted by GU fan in AZ

12:30 PM, Jul 13, 2008

OK OK OK,
I know that this topic has been pounded in to the ground on this blog, but, as a GU fan, and Huskie fan (by birth), I must comment on this schedule.
1st off, has everyone heard that College Gameday will be in Spokane in Feb for the Memphis Game? that's the 2nd time in 4 years that Bilas, Digger, Vital and Davis, and Katz will be in Spokane. Doesn't get much more national than that.
So, Portland, texas Southern, Lehigh, Montana, Morgan State, EWU, and Portland State are not what I would consider quality national high profile games. The logic Romar uses does not work.
GU does not need the game with UW, as UW does not need the game with GU. As a native WA, I need the game. There are not any "real" rivalies in WA. UW VS WSU, yes, but really, common, WSU has lost the majority of the games over the last century. There is hate, but not really a consistent rivaly where it's competitive.
So, respectively I say, bring back the game. Honestly however, I am not sure Few sould even want it back.

Posted by mattysimone

12:44 PM, Jul 13, 2008

I went to BCC last nite to watch some of the AAU games. wow Smith is just sick! id say almost a once in a lifetime chance for a coach. 6-10 280 and hes every bit of that plus some maybe. Imagine him as a frosh in college! can you say shaq? I thought i saw howland chillin at the other end of the court. Lots of scouts on hand

Posted by Bob Condotta

10:30 PM, Jul 13, 2008

Whoops --- I mistakenly left off the Pacific game on my initial post, and have since added it.

Posted by bhamhusky

7:48 AM, Jul 14, 2008

As a TYEE UW basketball season ticket holder, once again I am disappointed. These home schedules the past few years stink. I really think they need to bring Gonzaga back!

They do a terrible job of taking care of the fans too. And, the website still hasn't been updated with the roster etc.

Bob, do you have a link to the current -08/09 roster. I ask that because I wonder if one more move could be made.

Posted by Randy

8:04 AM, Jul 14, 2008

Let's not get too down about the schedule. So not all the teams are Kansas but remember that Portland State won their conference and did go to the NCAA tournament last year and Morgan State would have if they hadn't been upset in their tournament championship by 2 points. Morgan St won their conference and played in the NIT which is more than Washinton did. Be glad they're fitting the Huskies into their schedule Don't assume these teams will be pushovers!!

Posted by MT Husky

9:29 AM, Jul 14, 2008

Andy Katz quote:

"The Pac-10 games to circle are the two against Arizona State -- Jan. 17 in Westwood and Feb. 12 in Tempe -- and at Washington Jan. 24 in what could turn out to be a difficult game again. The Huskies seem to be the sleeper team in the Pac-10, with the return of Jon Brockman in the post and the anticipation that Quincy Pondexter can have a breakout season."

Posted by Dave " The Meatball" Armistead

10:57 AM, Jul 14, 2008

Randy- Now that is some refreshing realism, but the Huskies post season will be handcuffed again due to this cream puff schedule. Kansas is Preseason #23 and reigning champs...other than that, no one else is Pre-Season top 25 and Syracuse and Oklahoma State are both on downward spirals. Losing to teams like that will only put you guys in the CBI again. When will people realize it's Romar that is making this decision? He pads his coaching stats with the easy victories, and for what?

MT- Do you guys really want to rely on Pondexter? Brockman will likely get double teamed by most teams, and someone will have to step it up, but do you really have faith in Pondexter?

Posted by justin

11:39 AM, Jul 14, 2008

did UW forget the benefits of playing tough road games in non-con schedule? it's gonna be hard to go from a string of patsies at hec ed to playing wsu in pullman.

Posted by Randy

11:39 AM, Jul 14, 2008

Meatball,
I would agree that in order to make the NCAA tournament Washington will have to win a good percentage it's games. I wouldn't even be be opposed to suggesting that without a 20 win season and 5th place or higher in PAC 10 than it's NIT or lower. But it's also important to remember that until the games start, it's hard to totally predict how Washington's opponents will fair which which is what affects the RPI.
Kansas & Syracuse could have surprise seasons. Even Oklahoma State although that would reeeally be a stretch. But all in all, it's safe to say UW's schedule is not likely to earn a high RPI on it's own. They're going to need lots of wins.

Posted by MT Husky

12:28 PM, Jul 14, 2008

Meatball – don’t agree with you on your scheduling comments – but I’ll leave that to the other debaters.

But, I’m thrilled that you asked about Pondexter.

If the Huskies success was fully (or even primarily) dependant on Pondexter, I’d be concerned. I’m the first to admit he still has shown only flashes of the brilliance that he’s capable of, but has yet to dominate even an entire single game.

Further, though I think Bob appropriately and adequately addressed the Rivals article, I am a big believer in defense and that is a legit concern with this Husky team…Pondexter being one of those question marks. For instance, I think about Derozan. Who on the Huskies is going to take him? Qpon makes the most sense, but do I have faith he can adequately defend Derozan? No, honestly, I don’t.

But, with that admission, I don’t think anyone is or should rely on Pondexter for Huskies success. He is definitely one big potential key to their success this season, but only one of the several keys.

Tell me if you disagree with this Meatball, but when a team is missing one key cog/team, the rest of the team suffers because each player is forced to try to force things. I think that describes last year’s Huskies. They were missing that guy and I think it made the whole team look worse than they were. Brockman was forcing, Dentmon was forcing, Pondexter was forcing…Bryan Amaning and Overton were trying to figure things out.

But that won’t be the case this season. Pondexter MIGHT step up and be that guy. But even if Pondexter isn’t, two other players who I believe legitimately can (and likely will) are Thomas and MBA.

If MBA elevates his game, that will reduce the freedom other teams have had in double-teaming Brockman. And I agree with you, teams were smart to double-team Brockman because he handles the double-team poorly. But just MBA stepping it up will force teams to change their strategy and create opportunities not just for Brockman, but for Pondexter and others as well.

And with all of the great guards you’ve watched come out of AZ, you know how much one guard like IT can change the entire game. His ability to drive will do so much for someone like Pondexter…and Huskies have not had anyone like IT and I think someone with Pondexter’s game suffered for that.

That is a longer answer than I’m sure you wanted, but I don’t disagree with skepticm of Pondexter. Do I really have faith in Pondexter? I have faith that he has the capabilities to begin to dominate, and I have optimism that he will, but I’m not resting my hopes as a fan that Husky success is dependant on Pondexter.

For the record, I’m not one predicting Huskies will take 3rd in the Pac-10. But I do realistically believe they have potential to do that well. The potential in Pondexter, MBA and IT is very legit…if all of them can play to their potential a starting 5 of Overton, IT, MBA, Brockman and Pondexter will cause fits for any and every team in the Pac-10*

*I am concerned defensively with this line-up.

Posted by Carlton

12:40 PM, Jul 14, 2008

Zag Fans,

Nothing puts a smile on my face like Zag fans talking about playing a hard schedule. Last year was thought to be one of the strongest non-conference schedules in the country. You played Western Kentuck (w) Texas Tech (L) Va Tech (W) @ UCONN (W) @ St. Joe's (W) WSU (L) Okl (L) Tenn (L) and @ Memphis (L). You then played in the WCC, and really only faced one quality team in St. Mary (split). Please don't argue that every team is gunning for you and they pack their 3k seat gyms. Real conferences have the same thing except there are 10-15k in most gyms, with back to back quality opp. Last year, it is hard to argue the Zags played more than 11 quality teams. If they played in the Pac-10, in conference they would have faced 16 quality opp. with half of those games on the road. You could also then include 3-4 games against quality most Pac-10 teams add and your looking at almost 20 games against what the Zags would considered a quality non-conference opp. It is much easier to get to 20+ wins when 20 of those are gimmies. And this, outside of coaching, is the main reason the Zags have under performed come March in the Few era.

Carlton

PS Zags should focus on being the best in their area code before shooting for the state

Posted by Dave " The Meatball" Armistead

1:32 PM, Jul 14, 2008

MT- Well thought out, and good points. I agree if Pondexter and Thomas meet their potential, the Huskies could surprise some people (The Meatball included). I don't see the potential for the clumsy MBA though. Just be careful how much emphasis is put on the young players; sometimes they just don't meet expectations. My Cats are in the same boat this year in terms of relying on youth, and the biggest key for us in how solid Jeff Withey can be. I can sit here today and spout off about how good he was in Highschool, but sometimes that doesn't translate. If Withey does prove to be a reliable inside presence, the experience of Budinger, Hill, and Wise will be invaluable. I just dont see that same type of experience with the Huskies as Pondexter has been too inconsistant, Denton and Overton the same, and Brockman is a one trick pony who is a defensive liability.

Defense is what has been winning the Pac-10 the last few years, and that is why I forsee Washington continuing to struggle.

BTW...for those who think my Cats are in the same boat with regards to defense, you haven't the first clue so I wouldn't bother going there.

Posted by MT Husky

3:01 PM, Jul 14, 2008

Meatball,

I fully admit my hopes are riding on some high expectations. But I think we’re both guilty of seeing our teams with rose-colored glasses.

You touted the experience of Budinger, Hill and Wise…but all three are still entering their 3rd year like Pondexter. And I only watched a handful of AZ games last season, but I have had the impression both Wise and Hill showed similar inconsistency as Pondexter has (maybe not to the same degree…but still inconsistent).

Huskies on the other hand have 4 year starter in Brockman (and when he averages the double-double he averages I’m confused by your ‘one-trick’ pony comment…as well as considering him a defensive liability. I’m the first to criticize the defense lapses of several Huskies, but sure never Brockman…Brockman indeed forces shots and is not a great passer (especially out of a double-team) but other than that he is as well-rounded of a player you’ll ever find); 4 year (mostly) starter in Dentmon (who I suspect could be 6th man this season) and senior Wallace who may be a starter.

I don’t know Meatball…if you’re comparing experience I’d call it at most a wash, but I don’t see the advantage going to AZ in any way.

Further…be honest here…you really have confidence in Budinger’s defense? I’m a big Budinger fan (I love it that he came back…very cool in my estimation), one of the most fun players in the Pac-10 to watch…but defensively? I don’t know.

And finally, I’m touting MBA pretty much because of the numerous reports coming out of the summer open gyms how good he looks. I wouldn’t have described him as clumsy. Did he force shots? Yes. Did he have too many turnovers due to happy feet? He sure did. Did he makes defensive mistakes? Yes. But he also showed a lot of athleticism and I loved some of the passes he was making at the end of the season. So I think he can truly be a force this season.

So I disagree with several of your criticisms, but do agree with you on your overall assessment that any time our hopes are in young and/or unproven players (MBA, Pondexter, Thomas, etc.) we are setting ourselves up for disappointment. That is why I won't predict a 3rd place finish for the Huskies. But at the same time, everytime I read anything on what Thomas is doing in open gym, or the improved MBA/Pondexter...I suddenly begin again counting down the days to November.

Since you've allowed me to wax ineloquently. I'd love to hear your excitement level regarding Garland Judkins.

Posted by Dave " The Meatball" Armistead

8:46 PM, Jul 14, 2008

All I can say about Judkins is this....17 year old combo guard with good slashing skills and was highly disregarded to be an 08-09 recruit, and many thought would be a 4 or 5 star 09-10 recruit. Pretty much an afterthought for this college season....

If my memory serves me right, we once had a player from West Hollywood, California that came into the program the exact same way and he led us to a National Championship game (would have won if Zach Randolph didn't dislocate his shoulder in the Final 4 semi game)...

Not saying he will be another Gil, but everything I read so far is that the kid has wanted to be a Wildcat since he was young, gets good grades, and is pretty much likable by everyone who knows him. Sounds like Lute is getting back to the roots of success....

Posted by Randy

9:51 AM, Jul 16, 2008

MT Husky - great post. I agree with all your thoughts on the Husky players. I would say this though. To improve in the standings the Huskys will have to execute better than they did last year. There were many times I wanted to throw my TV out the window in frustration at the lousy play I saw. I also would hope that the level of play improves this year. But to defend that hope is hard to do. But that's what we do as fans.

But Meatball has thought me unreallistic in predicting a 3rd place finish for UW. Perhaps it is. But let's break down where I would see next years record improving by comparing last years records against specific teams with their changes in rosters.

Here goes. Listed in order of last years finish.

UCLA - Last year 1-1
This could the the hardest to predict as UCLA is changing so much. Last years win in Seattle had the be the biggest of the year for Washington. But UCLA hasn't beaten UW here in 4 years. Best hope is this continues. Prediction: 1-1 split

Stanford - Last year 0-2
Biggest team hit by graduation and departure. I don't see how they can compete. UW lost at Stanford by only 3 last year. In the loss at home Lopez dominated all by himself. Prediction 2-0

USC - Last year 0-2
This is one of the series that must improve. USC loses 2 good players and gains 1. UW should improve enough to even this up. Prediction: 1-1

WSU - Last year 0-2
Another series that hurt the record but both games were very close and could have gone the other way. Cougs one of the hardest hit by graduation but not completely dead. Prediction: 1-1 split

Oregon - Last year 1-1
Another hit by graduation but good incoming class. Not much reason to change from last year. Prediction: 1-1

Arizona St. - Last year 1-1
Sun Devils not changing much and UW is improving. Strange that these two teams beat each other on the road. Prediction 1-1

Arizona - Last year 1-1
Wildcats taking a big step back in personnel but still very good. Prediction 1-1

California - Last year 1-1
Washington lost last year twice to Cal (Pac 10 Tournament) on major efforts by Anderson. He is gone now with no replacement. Prediction: 2-0

Oregon State - Last year 2-0
Even without Ryan Appleby's 32 point blitz we should have no trouble repeating this outcome. Prediction: 2-0

Final total 12 - 6. This would have been a 3rd place finish last year and should be close to the same this year. Biggest gamble I would see is the UCLA game. If the new batch is as good as advertised this could be and 0-2 series meaning and 11-7 record. Finishing place 4th/5th last year.

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