Be vewy, vewy quiet, we’re hunting Beavers — There are no conference cupcakes, and with the sc revenge match looming, today’s contest against Oregon State is a classic TRAP game; The Bruins must be careful, because a loss, or even an unexpectedly close win, could hurt UCLA’s NCAA Tournament Seeding, which was already projected as a disappointing 4, in the first-ever in-season Selection Committee bracket-unveiling preview
A month or so ago, UCLA fans were certain that the Bruins would go into March Madness as the #1 Seed in the West bracket. That dream is on life-support, as the unprecedented in-season unveiling of seedings places UCLA as a #4 Seed in the East. UCLA is considered to be the 15th strongest team in the Country at the moment (I don’t know if this was their determination before or after we beat Oregon, who incidentally got a 2 seed!). To make matters worse, the East bracket looks the toughest, with UCLA looking up at #1 Seed Villanova, #2 Louisville, and #3 Kentucky
Perhaps the next unveiling will have the Bruins ascend the charts, moving up to a 3 or a 2, and moving out of the East, … but not if they don’t destroy the Beavs on Sunday afternoon in Pauley. Hopefully, their insulting seeding position will fire up the Bruins to give 100% effort against a team that is 0-12 in the Pac-12. The 27-point favorite Bruins are bound to be looking ahead to u$c, because they have lost to them 4 straight times, including earlier this year. So the Beavers might feast on a flat opponent, if Steve Alford can’t keep his team focused on the task at hand. Bruins beware: A team that relies on perimeter shooting is always vulnerable to a cold shooting night and an upset. The Bruins can concentrate on sc starting Sunday night. Hopefully, the trojans’ 14th straight loss to Oregon on Saturday won’t make the Bruins overconfident. UCLA avenged their Oregon loss, and next Saturday, it will be time to avenge an even more painful one. But first things first — Avoid a huge pitfall and Beat the Beavs.
Speaking of avoiding further pitfalls, here are the last 37 UCLA Spirit Squad photos from Thursday’s game. But come back tomorrow for new pics from the OSU game.