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GameDay Open Thread: #24 USC vs. #13 Washington State

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#24 USC

21-9

#24 USC at #13 Washington State

Saturday March 3rd, 2007 4:00 PT
Friel Court - Pullman, Washington

TV: FSN – RADIO 710 ESPN

#13 WSU

23-6

Not really much to say here as we close out the regular season. The task is pretty simple, a win puts us in 2nd place in the Pac 10 and a loss could drop us to 4th depending on what happens elsewhere.

From the SC website:

PAC-10 TOURNAMENT ON DECK -- The winner of the game between USC and Washington State will claim the second seed in the Pac-10 tournament, March 7-10 at Staples Center in Los Angeles.

If USC wins, it would tie the Cougars at 12-6 and win the tiebreaker by virtue of its 2-0 record vs. Oregon. If teams tie and split the season series, the tiebreaker comes down to their record against the top opponents in the conference on down and the first difference is Oregon, which Washington State lost to twice.

If USC loses, they would end up in a third place tie with the Arizona/Stanford winner and possibly Oregon. USC would win all tie-breakers and become the No. 3 seed, except if it is just a tie with Stanford, which would win the tiebreaker by virtue of its one win vs. UCLA. Clear?

Crystal!

It's just that simple. No need to get crazy with a game preview as if we win we will probably play WSU again in the 2nd round of the Pac 10 Tourney.

SC hasn't lost 2 in a row all season so hopefully we will keep that string going and finish the season strong. The boys really need to step up in this game and not have a repeat of what happened on Thursday night. The defense needs to be aggressive and SC needs to pick up the pace by playing the up tempo game they have been successful with.

From Bolch in the LAT:

It seemed an unlikely scenario only two months ago, two supposedly second-tier teams meeting in the final game of the regular season to determine second place in the Pacific 10 Conference.

But here are USC and Washington State, the conference's biggest overachievers, playing this afternoon at Beasley Coliseum with more on the line than a feel-good ending to their seasons.

Although the Cougars have already clinched at least a tie for second place in the Pac-10, the winner of today's game will claim the No. 2 seeding in the conference tournament because of tiebreaker rules that favor the Trojans.

The second-seeded team receives a more favorable draw in the conference tournament, playing the winner of a first-round game between seventh-seeded Washington and 10th-seeded Arizona State on Thursday in a quarterfinal at Staples Center; it also avoids the possibility of meeting conference champion UCLA before Saturday's title game.

There nothing shameful in having a bye in the first round of the tournament as it is better to play 3 days in a row versus 4 days in a row, provided you get that far. Frankly, I like our chances if we are the second seed and look forward to possible match-up against UCLA in the conference final. We'll see how it goes.

Regardless, it has been a wonderfully surprising season so lets finish on a high note and prepare for the post season.

Here's to a great game!

FIGHT ON!