Whatever the immediate concerns were about Dillon Brooks’ foot, they appear to be moot.
Brooks looks to be just fine.
The Oregon junior scored 19 points, had two rebounds and three assists in No. 10 Oregon’s 73-67 win over Utah on Thursday after missing Saturday’s win over Stanford with a foot sprain.
The sprain, of course, wasn’t really the fear about Brooks’ foot. It was the surgery he had on that same foot that kept him off the court all summer and for the first three games of this season. Oregon is Final Four good with Brooks. Returning after just one game away suggests that the issue truly was minor.
It certainly didn’t look like the foot was problematic for him against the Utes, unless there’s something specific about the injury that impairs his ability to flop with any sense of dignity. Brooks looked as explosive and dynamic as ever, and Dana Altman had no problem starting and playing him for 36 minutes. Brooks was 7 of 15 from the floor and struggled shooting from distance with a 1 of 6 evening.
The Ducks continue to stomp their way through the schedule, having now won 17-straight games. Its setting up for an extremely entertaining Pac-12 race as Arizona also is undefeated in league play. And you can’t forget about UCLA, even if the Bruins have two league losses.
For Utah, the loss was another missed opportunity for a team that hasn’t been able to record high-level wins this season. They don’t have a victory over a current KenPom top-50 team, though other than an a befuddling loss to San Francisco, they haven’t lost to a team rated worse than 29th in KenPom.
The Utes have lost to Oregon and UCLA at home by a combined seven points, and they don’t have a home game remaining this season against a KenPom top-50 team. If they’re going to get a signature win or two this season, it’ll have to come away from Salt Lake City.