Pac-12 Surprise Teams Surprised on Same Night
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The hype had been warm and fuzzy.
Both the California Golden Bears and Washington Huskies were unexpectedly romping through respectable non-con schedules, drawing praise as standard bearers for a Pac-12 conference that -- with the exception of Arizona -- looks a bit soft this season.
So there should still be no trap games for either one of them.
And yet, it seems those two had already started eyeing each other in anticipation of their conference opener in Berkeley on Fri 2 Jan. In so doing, they apparently forgot CS Bakersfield and Stony Brook might be psyched to meet up with them.
Any given day, dudes.
Stony Brook is favored to win the America East, but the Seawolves' non-con perfomance to date hadn't put them on any other radar. Their best victory was probably against Western Kentucky, and they came into Seattle with a 7-6 record. They're still looking for their first invitation to the Big Dance.
The Huskies, on the other hand, were 11-0 and being touted as a deep Dance contender. They'd handled the likes of Oklahoma, San Diego State, and UTEP. They've got the prototypical aircraft carrier in Robert Upshaw. They're über-athletic.
And they were ripe for the picking.
Later, down in the Bay Area, Bakersfield's Roadrunners were sitting 2-10, and the only dance their players were envisioning involved girls. The Cal Bears, at 10-2, had understandable losses to Texas and Wisconsin. Frankly, though, their only impressive triumph was over Syracuse.
Conference games can't come soon enough. Better to keep up appearances.