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The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Sunday, January 27, 9 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Jon M. Huntsman Center (15,000) -- Salt Lake City, Utah. Television: Pac-12 Network. Home Record: Stanford 8-2. Utah 7-5. Away Record: Stanford 1-4, Utah 2-5. Neutral Record: Stanford 2-2, Utah 0-0. Conference Record: Stanford 2-4, Utah 1-5. Series Record: Utah leads, 15-8.
GAMES NOTES: In the second contest of a three-game homestand the Utah Utes will host the Stanford Cardinal in a Pac-12 Conference battle at the Jon M. Huntsman Center.
In recent weeks Stanford has not been able to get into much of a rhythm trading wins and losses during its last four outings. The Cardinal were routed 75-54 on Thursday by Colorado and is now 11-8 overall and just 2-4 against league foes. The loss was the fourth in five tries on the road for Stanford which returns home for two straight contests against Oregon and Oregon State.
Utah has found itself in the wrong type of rhythm with losses in six of its last seven matchups. The most recent setback came on Thursday when the Utes were downed 62-57 by California to kick off the current homestand. Utah is 7-5 at the Huntsman Center on the season and just a1-5 in league contests. Utah wraps up its three-game homestand next Saturday against Colorado.
These teams split the season series a year ago. Those were the first two meetings between these squads as conference foes. Utah leads the all-time series 15-8.
Stanford really struggled to find its shot against Colorado as it hit on just 31.3 percent of its shots from the field in the 21-point loss. The Cardinal were dominated inside in the contest with a 44-20 deficit on points in the paint and a 48-30 disadvantage in rebounds.
Dwight Powell (14.7 ppg, 7.6 rpg) and Chasson Randle (13.6 ppg) are the top two scorers on the roster. Powell has scored in double figures in six straight contests while Randle has done so in each of the last five. Teaming with Powell on the interior is Josh Huestis (8.8 ppg, 9.0 rpg, 2.1 bpg) who is among the top 10 rebounders in the country, while blocking the third most shots. As a team Stanford is the lowest shooting squad in the Pac-12 (.400 FG percentage) while ranking eighth in scoring (68.6 ppg). Anchored by Huestis the Cardinal have been a solid defensive squad with the Cardinal allowing teams to shoot at a 41.4 percent clip while scoring 64.8 points per game.
Utah trailed by as many as 15 points against California but the Utes managed to pull within three in the final minute. However it was too little too late for Utah. The Utes hurt itself by turning the ball over 17 times while forcing only nine miscues by the Golden Bears.
Jordan Loveridge (12.7 ppg, 7.4 rpg) and Jarred DuBois (12.0 ppg, 3.2 apg) are the top scoring options for Utah. In just his freshman season Jordan Loveridge has already become a leader for the Utes having scored in double figures in 13 of the Utes' 19 games. Jason Washburn (11.2 ppg, 6.4 rpg) is another solid option in the frontcourt having scored in double figures in the last 10 games. Utah may rank just 11th in the conference in scoring (65.9 ppg) but the Utes have generally kept themselves competitive thanks to strong showings on the defensive end. Utah is giving up just 59.8 points per game on 37.4 percent shooting. That opponent field goal percentage is the 12th best in the country.
This battle will likely be one in which baskets will be hard to come by. Stanford will be able to match up with the Utes defensively and led by Powell, will have enough on the interior to earn a road win.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Stanford 65, Utah 63
01/27 10:32:06 ET
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