It only took about 80% of the game for UCLA to finally put away 8 win, 10th place ASU, 66-57, in Tempe. If this had been a normal season, where the Bruins were in the hunt to secure higher seeding and make some noise in the Tournament, this would have been a frustrating look ahead type of game with Arizona on the horizon. With this team, it's all expected.
At least the Bruins were able to ride hot second half shooting, led by Lazeric Jones and Joshua Smith, to finally put the Sun Devils away. Until halftime, it was a horrid affair. ASU's not particularly impressive matchup zone once again left Howland's team looking lethargic and confused. Even after a half that ASU looked out of sync and disjointed on offense still saw them only down a point at halftime thanks to them actually having a rebound advantage on us.
Every time UCLA threatened to put the game away in the second frame was met with a defensive breakdown or bad turnover until ASU finally faded with about 7 minutes to go and could no longer abuse David Wear with Jonathan Gilling.
For many, this game was literally unwatchable, as FSN Arizona's stream went down multiple times. On balance, those people may have been done a favor, because a win that requires 34 minutes of serious game time to pull away from woeful ASU does nothing to cover up the stench of Howland's uninspired trainwreck of a program.