It's probably the quietest eight-game winning streak in the country and it's happening right here in Utah.

No, we're not talking about the Jazz, who lost Friday night.It's the University of Utah basketball team, which won its eighth straight game Friday night, defeating Northern Arizona 85-52 at the Huntsman Center Friday night.

With the victory, the Utes completed their preseason schedule with a 9-2 record, which is a surprise to coach Rick Majerus.

"I expected us to be 7-4 or 8-3 at the best," said Majerus of his young squad. "To be 9-2 is miraculous."

The average margin of victory in those eight victories has been 26 points, but Majerus still isn't all that pleased with his team.

"I can tell you we're not that good," said Majerus. "It will probably still be a total rebuilding year."

Perhaps their opposition hasn't been that great, but the Utes are pulverizing opponents these days.

NAU was out of this game in the first three and a half minutes when Utah took a 10-0 lead. The Utes stretched the lead to 35-19 at halftime and in the second half they coasted.

The Utes top two guns, Keith Van Horn and Brandon Jessie both scored 16 points, playing barely half the game. Freshman center Ben Melmeth had perhaps his best game as a Ute, scoring 12 points and 13 points.

"Ben has improved a lot and has done some nice things the last few games," said Majerus.

As usual the Utes won it with rebounding and defense. Utah outrebounded NAU by a whopping 52-24 and held the Lumberjacks to just 30.9 shooting from the field.

Northern Arizona, which fell to 3-7 with the loss, didn't get any players in double-figure scoring as John Greer led the way with 9 points. Leading scorer Brad Snyder was ejected in the second half for a flagrant foul against Utah's Drew Hansen.

Backup center Doug Chapman left with a sprained ankle late in the game and is questionable for next week.

Now the Utes have just three days to get ready for the start of the Western Athletic season, which starts Tuesday in Provo against BYU.

"I'm guardedly optimistic," said Majerus about the upcoming WAC season. "I really think we're making progress, but I really don't know how we'll do."

After playing at BYU, the Utes follow with games at Fresno State Saturday and Air Force Monday. Then they're back home against Hawaii and San Diego State, giving the Utes five games in 11 days.