Bracketology/Bowls Expert

Can anyone beat the Cards?

The first half was a rough one for Dana Altman's Oregon Ducks as they fell behind quickly against Louisville and never were able to get back into the game.

The second half was better, but every time the Ducks would make a run and get the lead back to single digits, Russ Smith would make a play to stem the tide. Smith had 31 points for Louisville despite fighting a case of the Martian Death Flu (or just a really bad cold).

So, how do you beat Louisville? Coach Altman has a few pointers.

First, get off to a good start. "When you let a good team like Louisville be the aggressor, because they're ahead, never make a play from behind, they're tough to beat," Altman said after the game.

He added, "They got transition baskets early. Second-chance opportunities. They had six points on put-backs very early in the ball game. And it just set a bad tone."

Another key is handling the Louisville press, which Oregon did surprisingly well, considering they ranked 288th nationally in turnovers entering the tournament. The Ducks actually won the turnover battle, giving it up 12 times to 13 for the Cards. Only one of those turnovers came as a result of the press, so the Ducks' four days of practicing new press breaks worked well. You shudder to think how badly they would have lost if they didn't handle the press.

Also, you'd better find a way to keep Russ Smith in front of you. But, Altman says, "I don't think there's an easy answer to that. Russ Smith is a talented young man."

Yes. Yes he is. And as Altman says, if it was that easy, "they probably wouldn't have won 32 ballgames." So file all of this under "Easier Said Than Done."

CBSSports Facebook Google Plus
Conversation powered by Livefyre

Latest Video

July 31, 2015
Big 12 Summer School (1:34)
July 30, 2015
Gary Parrish on the Ball brothers from California
July 29, 2015
Big East Hoops Summer School
July 28, 2015
Prospect Profile: Harry Giles


Most Popular Shop

Men's Nike Charcoal Denver Broncos Training Camp Performance T-Shirt

NFL Training Camp Gear
Get your favorite team
Shop Now

2015 NCAA Tournament
Final Four