Guess which Pac-10 men's basketball team is the only one still playing this March?
UW? Nope. Out in the second round of the NCAA tournament.
WSU? Nope. Out in the final four of the NIT.
UCLA, USC or Arizona? Nope. Lost at various stages of the NCAA tournament.
No, all of them are done. In fact, the only team still playing is the University of Oregon Ducks. That's right. You heard it correctly. The Ducks.
OK, that's about as good as the story gets because the tournament they are still alive in - the College Basketball Invitational (CBI) - is a minor tournament to be sure. No way you can compare it to the big stage of the NCAA tournament and it's definately second to even the NIT. So, the Ducks' run through the CBI to the finals and climb to a 20 win season should not be overplayed for more than it is.
But hey, for a team that finished the regular season at .500 and 7th in the Pac-10, playing in the CBI and having a good run into the finals is a chance for more practice and work for a young team. Even if they now lose the last game of the finals, you combine the extended experience and PT with the fact that UO only loses two seniors and adds some highly touted freshmen and JC transfers for next season and the Ducks might be looking pretty dang good for the 2011-2012 season.
Ask Virginia Commonwealth University if the CBI helped them. In case you don't recall, they won the CBI last season and now are in the Final Four of the NCAA tournament.
And for fans of Pac-10 basketball, that's why it might be of interest to know that the Ducks are still playing.