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February 26, 2012

Huskies focusing on finish, not NBA subject

As the end of the basketball season approaches, one loaded question about the Washington Huskies stands out:

Are Tony Wroten and Terrence Ross returning next season?

The issue has been brought up so much that Huskies coach Lorenzo Romar did his best not to imply anything during his weekly press conference.

Even the media were advised not to ask because for both players, it was a touchy subject.

"You look at the reaction when the crowd, lovingly, chanted 'One more year' when Terrence (Ross) was at the free-throw line, he was embarrassed by that," Romar said. "If he were alone, maybe he wouldn't be as embarrassed, but this is a team. He's a team guy.

"This is the same guy during a timeout is saying 'Hey. If we get C.J. (Wilcox) the ball,' - not get me the ball, but if we get C.J. the ball- 'C.J's hit two in a row. If we can run this for C.J…,' you're talking about a team guy that way."

Instead, Ross, Wroten and the rest of the Huskies are focused on finishing this season on a high note. A 59-55 road victory over Washington State Saturday night has improved the Huskies' record to 20-8 overall and 13-3 in the Pac-12. It is the fourth consecutive 20-win season for the Huskies.

If Washington wins out on the road against USC and UCLA, the Huskies could have Romar's best conference record in his tenure. And, if so, this year's record would be one game better than the Brandon Roy-led 2004-2005 Washington team that earned a No. 1 seed in the NCAA tournament.

Road games have plagued Romar's teams in the past. In nonconference games this season, Washington lost every game away from Seattle. However, as this young team became more cohesive, they became more comfortable away from home. In 2012, the Huskies are 5-2 on the road.

"Does that mean we've solved our issues?" Romar said. "No, not necessarily but we're better than we were. Each game's a new adventure, a new unique challenge."

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