Game Notes: Ducks Ready For Pac-12 Home Opener, Take Two
THE STARTING FIVE
It's Oregon's Pac-12 home opener, take two, when the Ducks host California Thursday at 7 p.m. (Pac-12 Network).
• 1 – With Oregon's win against Portland on Dec. 19, Dana Altman tied Louisville's Denny Crum for 24th in NCAA Division I career coaching wins with 675. Former Stanford and California coach Mike Montgomery is 23rd with 677.
• 2 –Oregon's defensive effort against Portland was among the best in the nation this season. The Ducks held the Pilots to 21.4 percent shooting from the field (12-of-56). In games between two Division I opponents, only Florida has done better this season. The Gators held Stetson to 19.6 percent shooting (10-of-51) on Dec. 6.
• 3 – Oregon has won 26 consecutive games at Matthew Knight Arena. That's the second-longest home winning streak in program history and is tied for the fourth-longest active home streak in the nation.
• 4 – Eugene Omoruyi, the third-leading scorer in the Pac-12 (18.1 ppg), has scored in double figures in every game this season.
• 5 – During Oregon's six-game winning streak, the Ducks are plus 21.0 points in the paint per game (45.0 to 24.0).
• BENCH – Oregon already has four plus-10 rebound games in seven contests this season: Seton Hall - plus-16 (38-22), Eastern Washington - plus 14 (45-31), Washington - plus 10 (40-30) and Portland - plus 16 (42-26).
• BENCH – Dana Altman is one of five active head coaches in NCAA Division I who have posted a winning record for the last 23 consecutive seasons. The other four, Mike Krzyzewski, Tom Izzo, Bill Self and Jim Boeheim, are in the Hall of Fame.
ALTMAN TIES IN CRUM, CLOSING IN ON MONTGOMERY, 800 WINS
With Oregon's win against Portland on Dec. 19, Dana Altman tied Louisville's Denny Crum for 24th on the NCAA Division I carer coaching wins list with 675. Crum won 675 games at Louisville from 1971-2001 and guided the Cardinals to two NCAA championships (1980, 1986) with six Final Four appearances. Just ahead of Altman and Crum in 23rd is former Stanford and California coach Mike Montgomery (677). Altman is also closing in on 800 career wins as a head coach at all levels. Including 123 junior college wins, Altman currently stands at 798 career wins.
HOME COURT ADVANTAGE
The Ducks are 158-20 (.888) all-time at Matthew Knight Arena since the building opened in 2011.
PAC-12 AT MKA
The Ducks are 70-16 (.814) in Pac-12 games at Matthew Knight Arena. Two teams have yet to register a win at the nine year-old arena: Washington State (0-8) and Arizona State (0-6). USC is 1-8, Arizona and Washington are 1-7, Utah and Colorado are 1-5, Oregon State is 2-8, Stanford is 2-6, UCLA is 3-6 and California is 4-4.
DUCKS ON SECOND-LONGEST HOME WINNING STREAK IN PROGRAM HISTORY
Coming into the UCLA game, Oregon has won 26 straight at Matthew Knight Arena. That's tied for the fourth-longest active streak in the nation, and is the second-longest in program history. Three of Oregon's five longest home winning streaks have come under Dana Altman.
HISTORIC DEFENSIVE EFFORT VS. PORTLAND
Oregon's defensive effort Dec. 19 against Portland was among the best in the nation this season. The Ducks held the Pilots to 21.4 percent shooting from the field (12-of-56). In games between two Division I opponents, only Florida has done better this season. The Gators held Stetson to 19.6 percent shooting (10-of-51) on Dec. 6. The Pilots' 21.4 percent was also a low for an Oregon opponent at Matthew Knight Arena. The previous low was 23.4 percent by Eastern Washington on Nov. 9, 2018.
THE 411 ON THE 6-11
Eric Williams Jr. is one of 32 players nationally and is the only player in the Pac-12 with six games of at least 11 rebounds and six points this season. Williams needs just six more points to reach 1,000 in his collegiate career. The junior scored 905 points in two seasons at Duquesne.
With the NCAA granting a blanket waiver for transfers on Dec. 16, Aaron Estrada gained immediate eligibility. The St. Peter's transfer played two minutes Dec. 17 versus San Francisco and had four points and three rebounds in 18 minutes Dec. 19 against Portland.
FIGUEROA WAIVER GRANTED
The NCAA approved LJ Figueroa's transfer waiver on Dec. 3. The senior, who transferred to Oregon from St. John's, led Oregon with nine rebounds and four steals in his Duck debut Dec. 4 against Seton Hall. As a junior in 2019-20, Figueroa led St. John's in scoring at 14.5 points per game. The Lawrence, Mass., native paced the Big East in steals at 1.9 per game last season.
DUARTE SHOWS 2019-20 FORM
Chris Duarte was on an all-conference pace prior to a finger injury last season. He is showing some of that midseason form early in 2020-21, averaging 15.4 points per game and shooting 53.5 percent from the field. He had 22 points (4-of-7 three-pointers), four rebounds and two steals in the season-opener against Missouri. He added 14 points and six rebounds two nights later against Seton Hall. Dec. 9 against Florida A&M, a season-high 23 points on 10-of-14 shooting. More recently, Duarte led the Ducks with 21 points, three blocks and two steals Dec. 19 against Portland. On Feb. 1, 2020, prior to the injury, the senior from the Dominican Republic was averaging 14.3 points and shooting 37.3 percent from three-point range. He finished the year averaging 12.9 points per game and hitting 33.6 percent from downtown. After playing though the injury for about a month, Duarte missed the final three games due surgery to repair the injured finger. Duarte had two 30-point games last year (31 points Dec. 29 against Alabama State, 30 points Jan. 23 versus USC) and was twice named Pac-12 Player of the Week. He set the Matthew Knight Arena record eight steals in the win against USC.