Oregon Ducks Basketball

College basketball rankings: Oregon Ducks rightly back in top 5

College Basketball Rankings
College Basketball Rankings via ESPN

For the first time since November, the Oregon Ducks men’s basketball team is back in the top five of the Associated Press top 25.

The latest college basketball rankings were released Monday morning. Unsurprisingly, the Ducks (21-3, 10-1 Pac-12) moved up 8 spots to No. 5 after a dominating 27-point victory against a highly ranked Arizona Wildcats ( 21-3, 10-1) team last week.

Oregon opened the season with lofty expectations and a No. 5 ranking, but two early loses nearly dropped the reigning elite representatives out of the top 25 altogether.

Star guard Dillon Brooks returned from injury, and head coach Dana Altman and co. have orchestrated one of the best runs in program history. The Ducks boast the longest active home winning streak at 40 games, which moved to first place when then No. 2 Kansas was shocked at home against unranked Iowa State on Saturday.

Oregon has won 19 of its last 20 games, non bigger than the dismantling of the Wildcats to move into a tie for first place in the conference.

Considering the absence, and slow return, of Brooks early in the season, when the Ducks dropped two of its first four games, voters took way too long to bring Oregon back into the top of the rankings.

It wasn’t until last week that the Ducks cracked the top 10, and it only took a blowout victory over Arizona and losses by six of the top 10 ranked teams for Oregon to move back where it belongs – in the top five.

College Basketball Rankings
College Basketball Rankings

ESPN Bracketology expert Joe Lunardi has the Ducks as a two seed in the west in his projected NCAA Tournament bracket. Should that hold, Oregon would face Furman in Sacramento then the winner of seventh-seeded Notre Dame and 10th-seeded Wichita State.

Altman is no stranger to highly touted team, quickly passing previous Ducks coaches as one of the best in program history.

Webfoot faithful have known all season how good the green and yellow – or black, white, etc – are, but now the nation is starting to drink the Kool Aid again.

Oregon will have another chance in the national spotlight when it hosts No. 10 UCLA (21-3, 8-3) in a rematch of Brooks’ buzzer-beater in January.

Should the Ducks make another statement, don’t be surprised to see them continuing to climb toward the top of the rankings.

Dillon Brooks flop: Was it really that bad? Yes, yes it was!

Dillon Brooks flop
Dillon Brooks flop

Oregon Ducks basketball junior forward Dillon Brooks captured the nation’s attention last night but for all the wrong reasons.

Lost in the No. 10 Ducks’ impressive road win against the Utah Utes was an embarrassing lop by Brooks, one of college basketball’s top players.

As seen in the gifs below, Brooks absorbed a soft blow by Utah sophomore guard Sedrick Barefield. After a short pause, Brooks then falls to the ground in dramatic fashion.

Check it out and decide for yourself… Click on the image to play.

Story continues below gifs.

Dillon Brooks flop
Dillon Brooks flop
Dillon Brooks flop
Dillon Brooks flop

Now, maybe Brooks was really knocked off balance and couldn’t collective himself. But let’s be honest, this is one of the worst flops in a long time.

Below is the full video.

Oregon men’s basketball completes weekend sweep of So. Cal schools

Oregon men's basketball
Oregon men’s basketball guard Dillon Brooks gets off a buzzer beater against UCLA on Wednesday night at Matthew Knight Arena.

Matthew Knight Arena: where unbeaten teams go to die.

It doesn’t quite have the same flair as Autzen Stadium, but the Oregon men’s basketball team took care of business this week on the national stage. After knocking the undefeated No. 2 UCLA on Wednesday night, 89-87 on a Dillon Brooks buzzer beater, the No. 21 Ducks beat another unscathed team in Eugene with a 84-61 blowout of No. 22 USC on Friday.

“We knew after Christmas, coach told us, ‘Go home, free up your mind and when you come back be focused,'” Oregon senior forward Chris Boucher said via a GoDucks story. “We knew coming back it would be a tough stretch and we had two undefeated teams to beat.”

Brooks’ shot against the Bruins reminded many of the 2006 shot by former Ducks standout Aaron Brooks, a game-winner against then unbeaten and and top-ranked UCLA.

On Friday, Oregon coach Dana Altman picked up a milestone with his 700th career win. Brooks once again carried the Ducks, scoring a team-high 28 points in just 24 minutes on the court.

It was a momentous stand by Oregon (13-2, 2-0 in Pac-12 play), which extends its home winning streak to 35 games at Matthew Night Arena, the third longest such streak in the nation.

After a less-than-ideal start to the regular season, losing two of its first five games, including a 17-point blowout at the hands of Baylor, the Ducks have won 11 straight and are sure to make a big jump in the newly updated rankings Monday.

Oregon will take on Washington and Washington State next week, its first conference road games of the season. Should the Ducks continue to pile up wins, it wouldn’t be surprising to see them back in the top 10, possibly the top five, of the rankings.

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