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MailTribune.com
  • COLLEGE BASKETBALL

    Ducks are ready to tackle Sweet 16

    Oregon hopes to avoid steady diet of turnovers against Louisville
  • Oregon's season-long concern with turnovers is likely to become a priority in practices this week as the Ducks prepare for their Friday meeting with Louisville in a Midwest Regional semifinal in Indianapolis.
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  • Oregon's season-long concern with turnovers is likely to become a priority in practices this week as the Ducks prepare for their Friday meeting with Louisville in a Midwest Regional semifinal in Indianapolis.
    Nobody can cause an opponent to turn the basketball over quite like the Cardinals, who have forced both of their NCAA tournament opponents into season-high totals for turnovers.
    "You can't simulate how they come at you, and I knew it," Colorado State coach Larry Eustachy said of the Cardinals' defensive pressure. "You really don't know how good they are until you have to sit there and watch them come at you, and they just keep coming at you and keep coming at you."
    In an 82-56 victory over Colorado State, the Cardinals forced the Rams into 20 turnovers, double the season average for CSU. In its previous game, Louisville had 20 steals, a record for an NCAA tournament game, while forcing North Carolina A&T into a season-high 27 turnovers.
    Even in Oregon's otherwise impressive victory over Saint Louis, "we turned the ball over too much, which is a big concern knowing what we've got in front of us," UO coach Dana Altman said as he previewed playing the Cardinals.
    The Ducks had 18 turnovers against Saint Louis, eight of them by senior E.J. Singler and four more by backup point guard Johnathan Loyd. That followed 18 turnovers by the Ducks in a victory over Oklahoma State, which Altman termed "ridiculous."
    Oregon is averaging 15 turnovers, the most in the Pac-12. Louisville forced its opponents into an average of 19 turnovers.
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