Feeling a little better about themselves in the wake of that first road win at Stanford, the Huskies today expressed hope that they might yet play their way into this season's NCAA tournament.
"I think we have a great shot," captain Quincy Pondexter said. "I have a lot of faith and belief in this team in getting to the Big Dance. At the end of the season we could have a good amount of wins and a decent resume even though people really don't respect us like they do the other teams that are in similar situations like us ... like Louisville or UConn, I think that we're going to have a chance to be OK. With our schedule remaining and what we can do in the Pac-10 tournament I feel like we have a great chance of making it."
Pondexter was asked if he thinks the Huskies have to win the rest of their games to make that happen.
"Not necessarily," he said. "It's always great to win those last five regular season games and I think we're capable of doing it. We've been playing pretty good basketball of late and besides the Cal game we had a little slippage, other than that we've been on a pretty good roll."
Meanwhile, coach Lorenzo Romar was unable to predict what number of victories might be necessary for the Huskies (now 17-8 overall and 7-6 in the Pac-10 with five regular-season games remaining):
"I don’t know what it is," he said. "Last year you knew you had a chance if you did what you’re supposed to do, to win the Pac-10 championship and we’d probably be in the ncaa tournament. This year, I don’t know what the magic number is. I just know right now it’s one to win. We’ve got to concentrate on the USC game. And if that turns all right then the next game, we have to concentrate on that. I can’t give you a number."