After 1st Pac-12 road sweep in 6 years, are UW Huskies for real?
The UW Huskies entered the 2018-19 men’s basketball season ranked No. 25 in the nation, but they’ve been absent from the polls since a road loss to No. 14 Auburn in their second game, with subsequent losses to Minnesota, No. 5 Gonzaga and No. 14 Virginia Tech not helping matters.
After their performances last weekend at Utah and Colorado, however, talk of Washington ending an NCAA Tournament drought dating back to 2011 has been re-ignited.
The Huskies handled Utah in Salt Lake City 69-53 last Thursday night, then followed the lead of Jaylen Nowell down the stretch for a 77-70 win over the Buffaloes in Boulder on Saturday, pushing them to 3-0 in Pac-12 play and giving the program its first in-conference road sweep in six years.
But are these Huskies for real? Brock and Salk of 710 ESPN Seattle discussed Monday morning during their Good News, Bad News, No News segment. Here’s what they had to say.
“A year ago coach Mike Hopkins had a team that nobody thought would be relevant whatsoever, and at midseason was talked about being a tournament team. This team was ranked in the preseason top 25, fell short on the road (prior to conference play), and that’s a bummer now as you look at it. They’re 12-4, and if they could have just got a win in one of those games against a top-25 team, Gonzaga, Virginia Tech or Auburn, you would feel so differently about their RPI and their tournament chances.”
“They may have an opportunity to get themselves back into the top 25, depending how other things go, and obviously a great chance to win this conference and get themselves back to the tournament that way. … This is obviously good news, but it’s news I feel like I’ve heard before. (After the Seahawks season) everybody starts looking around like, ‘Hey, could I get into this Husky basketball team?’ And right away they give you a little bit of hope and win a couple of big games, and you go ‘Oh, they’re fun, they’re exciting,’ and then we get el foldo at the end of the year.”
“This group is a lot deeper, though. This group is much more battle-tested, this group is loaded with seniors that I would hope offset some of that. … I think this crew wanted to be here, and kudos to you, congratulations for the first time in six years taking care of business with a road sweep.”
You can listen to the full segment in this podcast of Brock and Salk’s second hour from Monday.
Related: UW Huskies homepage