Originally written on NorthWest Sports Beat  |  Last updated 10/30/14
Climbing the Pac? Sitting at 5-1 on the season as of Tuesday afternoon, the Oregon Ducks have surprised many pundits and fans coming out of the gates. Currently sitting fourth in the PAC-12 standings, the Ducks, who during the preseason were predicted by many (including myself) to sit in the bottom half of the division standings and hold a NIT ticket are making a push for the Big Dance. The Ducks opened the season with five straight wins over Northern Arizona, Portland State, Vanderbilt, and Jacksonville State. Add in two exhibition games against Concorida and Southern Oklahoma State and the Ducks have successfully defended their home court, Matthew Knight Arena. Global Sports Classic Venturing out on the road for the first time this season, the Ducks found themselves in the championship game of the Global Sports Classic after an upset 83-79 victory over the 18th ranked UNLV on the Rebels home court, a place that visiting teams had not seen success in twenty games. Damyean Dotson has been crucial to Oregon’s early success on the court. For the Ducks, the victory was extra sweet as it meant a victory over one time Oregon recruit and Canadian born Anthony Bennett (who still dropped 22 points and 10 boards).  While the Ducks did fall short to the 22nd ranked Cincinnati Bearcats the following night, 77-66, they showed the PAC 12 and the rest of the NCAA that they are a legit contender for a place in the top 68 come March. Point Leaders While many thought at the beginning of the season that the Ducks offense would be a one man show, freshman Damyean Dotson has stepped up to be a potent scoring alternative to senior foward, E.J. Singler, who has played solid but unspectacular in his first six games, struggling from the field as he has only converted 33% of his shots. Along with senior forward Carlos Emory, the trio have teamed up to lead the Ducks in both minutes and points so far this season, all posting a double digit scoring average and roughly twenty five minutes of floor action per game. First year point guard Dominic Artis has found his way as the Ducks floor general, but could find even more success if his shots were to start falling, hitting only 39% of his shots.  Although he has posted double digits in four of the six games this season, his assist to turnover ratio is quite high (as often the case with freshman point guards), something that will have to change if the Ducks are to remain successful. With just over a month left until conference play starts, the Ducks once again set out to defend their home court with a six out of seven game home stand that starts on Thursday against the University of Texas San Antonio and finishing with a meeting with the Nevada Wolfpack on New Years Eve. Based on their results and effort to date, it would not be a stretch to imagine that Dana Altman‘s team will enter PAC 12 play against their in state rival, the Oregon State Beavers, with a 12-1 record and possible placement in the national rankings. CLICK HERE CHECK OUT THE DUCKS BLOG IN OUR CLUBHOUSE TODAY AT NWSB!
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Report: Broncos will franchise tag Demaryius Thomas

Marshawn Lynch on final SB play: 'I was expecting the ball'

Report: Rangers acquire Keith Yandle from Coyotes

Report: Bucs to keep Vincent Jackson under current contract

Twins to limit players' smartphone use on game days

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Shane Battier: Carmelo Anthony is not that tough to guard

Ronda Rousey would be 'happy' to fight Cat Zingano again

Markieff Morris calls out Suns fans after loss

Cowboys to let DeMarco Murray test free agency?

Brock Lesnar attends UFC 184, keeps MMA rumors alive

Dick Vitale will not call Duke-UNC rematch either

PHOTO: Pacquiao has message for Mayweather with t-shirt?

Nuggets break team huddle with countdown to end of season

WATCH: James Harden kicks LeBron in the groin

Jim Harbaugh tells Madonna he respects her toughness

Are the Oakland Raiders finally trending up?

Durant blasts Instagram hater for Westbrook comment

Three potential big signings the Steelers could make

Kevin Garnett buys 1,000 tickets for Timberwolves fans

Michigan fan has incredible Charles Woodson tattoo

WATCH: NIU C brings down basket on dunk

McCown plans to embrace mentoring role with Manziel

Chris Sale out three weeks with foot injury

College Basketball News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Report: Broncos to franchise Demaryius

James Harden kicks LeBron in groin

Lynch: 'I was expecting the ball'

Report: Rangers get Yandle from Coyotes

Harbaugh respects Madonna's grit

Twins to limit game day cell phone use

Kevin Durant blasts hater on Instagram

KG buys 1,000 tickets for T-Wolves fans

Markieff Morris calls out Suns fans

Cowboys letting Murray test market?

Brock Lesnar attends UFC 184

Rousey beats Zingano in 14 seconds

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.