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Weekly Six Pac: Circle the Wagons

NFL comes calling for a premier Pac-12 playmaker

USC v Utah Photo by Chris Gardner/ Getty Images

1. While the Huskies returned too much talent to be a factor in the NFL Draft, there were some notable Pac-12 players taken in the early rounds. One of my favorite non-Huskies to watch over the last few years, Utah’s Dalton Kincaid, made headlines in a hectic first round. The Bills traded up to take Kincaid despite already having a star tight-end on the roster in Dawson Knox. The Bills front office said that Kincaid wasn’t on their radar at the start of the draft process, but his film stood out so much that they made the move to add another dimension to Josh Allen’s passing arsenal. Kincaid will be fun to watch in the pros, and the combination of Dawson Knox and Dalton Kincaid sounds like a sheriff and his deputy from a classic spaghetti western.

2. I wrote last week about the mass exodus of returning players following Colorado’s spring game. The trend continued through the week to the point where it was difficult to keep tabs on who was left. Coach Prime had reinforcements lined up, though. In the last week, Colorado has added transfers from Florida, Tennessee, and three from Deion’s old stomping grounds in Tallahassee. Win or lose, this iteration of the Buffs is a hell of a lot more interesting than the Sam Noyer era.

3. Oregon held their spring game over the weekend and Bo Nix’s squad made a late comeback to beat an opposing side led by Ty Thompson. It sounded like a fun format with a fast pace to get as many plays as possible on film, which just so happened to entertain the 45,000 fans who showed up at Autzen. It probably means very little at this point, but I thought it was notable that neither QB managed to complete even 50% of his pass attempts. It will be worth keeping a close eye on the things that change offensively for the Ducks with Kenny Dillingham now in Tempe.

4. Consistent with this post’s interest in the less publicized college sports, UCLA’s Daily Bruin published a nice recap of some sports that are neither football nor basketball. The softball team continues to dominate everyone who isn’t Oklahoma and enters the post-season with a fantastic 44-4 record. Meanwhile, the men’s volleyball team finished its regular season as the #1 team in the country and gets a bye all the way to the national semifinals. They also had some spring game notes, including the somewhat surprising update that QB transfer Collin Schlee is entrenched as the third option behind freshman Dante Moore and Ethan Garbers (Hey! I know that guy!).

5. Arizona men’s basketball was flying high early in the 2022-23 season, but things did not end well for Tommy Lloyd and the Wildcats. The problems have spilled over to roster construction in the off-season with some unexpected departures that the Cats have not sufficiently backfilled. Arizona lost out to Gonzaga for Creighton PG transfer Ryan Nembhard, whose older brother played for Lloyd when he was an assistant with the Zags. Lloyd defended his roster on a local talk show and tried to reassure fans that they would be in a great position by the start of the season.

6. One of the few unequivocal successes of the UW men’s basketball team over the last few years has been the ability to bring in transfers from blue blood programs. The Dawgs’ cross-state rivals in Pullman went to that same well to land Joseph Yesufu from Kansas. Yesufu started his career at Drake before transferring to Lawrence and finding a role off the bench on the 2022 National Champions. He will look for a bigger role in the Cougar backcourt this year.