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Pac-12 roundup: Oregon has ‘very real chance’ to make Final Four

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Pretty good start for the Pac-12

Oregon v Wisconsin Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

The Buffalo Bulls are back in good graces with Arizona Wildcats fans.

UB knocked the Arizona State Sun Devils and former Buffalo head coach Bobby Hurley out of the NCAA Tournament Friday, routing ASU 91-74 in Tulsa.

Buffalo didn’t quite shoot 50 percent from 3 like it did when it eliminated Arizona from last year’s NCAA Tournament, but the Bulls made 38 percent of their 3s and walloped the Sun Devils on the glass, with a 42-26 advantage.

GCU should be on edge because Buffalo evidently loves to feast on Arizona’s college basketball teams.

Other than that drubbing, it was a solid first round for the Pac-12.

The 12th-seeded Oregon Ducks continued their hot streak by blowing out the fifth-seeded Wisconsin Badgers, 72-54, in San Jose.

Oregon’s defense has been unreal in the postseason, holding three of its last four opponents under 87 points per 100 possessions. Wisconsin only shot 33 percent from the field.

Payton Pritchard, the Pac-12 Tournament’s Most Outstanding Player, continues to grow his postseason legend by posting 19 points, eight assists and five rebounds against Wisconsin.

The Ducks wouldn’t have even made the NCAA Tournament had they not won the Pac-12 Tournament, but now folks like CBS analyst Seth Davis think they have a “very real chance” of reaching the Final Four.

The real takeaway from UO’s run is that Dana Altman is continuing to prove himself as the best tactician in the Pac-12.

However, Mike Hopkins might have something to say about that, especially after the ninth-seeded Washington Huskies blew out the eighth-seeded Utah State Aggies 78-61 on Friday.

Washington had not been playing its best basketball entering the NCAA Tournament, so it was pretty surprising to see it handle USU the way it did, taking a 12-point lead into halftime and never relenting. It was UW’s first double-digit win since Feb. 20 against Utah.

The Huskies get No. 1 seed North Carolina on Sunday in Columbus, Ohio. Oregon faces No. 13 seed UC Irvine, who upset the Kansas State Wildcats in the first round.

Max Hazzard, the younger brother of former Arizona walk-on Jacob Hazzard, had 19 points in UCI’s 70-64 victory.