Oregon Head Coach Dana Altman:
Oregon Guards Johnathan Loyd and Damyean Dotson:
EUGENE, Ore. — For the second straight year, Oregon is going dancing. The Ducks (23-9) earned a seven seed in the NCAA Tournament and will take on tenth-seeded BYU (23-11) Thursday in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
“A month ago (an NCAA Tournament berth) was out of the question,” point guard Johnathan Loyd said. “We fought through adversity, we showed great character and we fought back…that’s what made it even sweeter.”
It is a rematch of a December 21st meeting between the Ducks and Cougars at Matthew Knight Arena, which Oregon won 100-96 in overtime. The Ducks trailed by as many as nine points in the second half of that game, but were fueled by 31 points from Jason Calliste off the bench as well as 25 points from Joseph Young.
The Cougars will be without one of their best players in the game. Guard Kyle Collinsworth was lost for the season to a knee injury in the WCC championship game. Collinsworth finished the overtime loss to the Ducks with 15 points, eight assists and five rebounds.
(7) Oregon and (10) BYU tip off at 12:10 p.m. PST in Milwaukee. The winner will advance to the round of 32 to play the winner of (2) Wisconsin and (15) American.