Bruins smoked the Bears last time the two schools met up in Berkeley. However, our coaches, players and fans would be foolish to look past a Bear team which is coming into Pauley feeling pretty good about themselves. Yeah, sure, the Bears swept the horrible Oregon schools last week. But still they got the job done, gained some confidence in process, and now will be coming into LA with nothing to lose. So the Bruins better watch out. Hopefully, they will not sputter around on Thursday night like they did against Arizona State, which features a game which, on paper, may stand out the less glamorous match up of this week's Pac-10 set against the Bay Area teams.
As mentioned above, the last time the Bruins took on Braun's Bears, they demolished them. And they got the job done with the help of AA shutting down Ayden Ubaka, the pg who is the catalyst of Bear's offensive attack. Here is Tightwad on how Ubaka is going to be key to Bears' attack at Pauley:
--Freshman F-C Ryan Anderson scored 12 of his 18 points in the second half vs. Oregon. He also had five rebounds. He battled foul trouble against Oregon State, finishing with a season-low six points before fouling out with 2 1/2 minutes left in regulation.
--Sophomore Theo Robertson scored a season-high 21 points against Oregon State.
The other guys to keep an eye on here are Ryan Anderson and Patrick Christopher. The guy to watch out for perhaps the most is freshman swingman Patrick Christopher. PC dropped 16 on Oregon last Thursday, and followed that up with a monster 24 pt/12 reb. performance against Oregon State. More from Tightwad on how the freshman has flipped the proverbial switch despite struggling with a groin injury:
Another factor to keep in mind. While Ubaka may have been playing with flu, keep in mind that Luc played in that game after coming off a sprained knee. He had 4 points, but he grabbed 11 rebounds, 3 of which happened to be of the offensive variety. Hopefully Luc, Mata, and AA2 can maintain the Bruins edge in rebounding margin. It turned out to be a huge factor in the last game.
This is going to be a dangerous game. We just can't afford to look past these guys. Otherwise, we will end up in a tough battle like we found ourselves against ASU. I will post more thoughts on this game later.