Wildcat Authority Pac-12 Power Rankings
1.) Arizona (20-0, 7-0) LW: 1 – It wasn’t an easy week for the Wildcats. Arizona won both games at home and is still undefeated heading into one of the toughest road trips of the season. While Colorado did not offer much of a threat to the Wildcats, Utah was able to keep the game close until late in the second half. Wins at California and Stanford would solidify Arizona’s spot in the driver’s seat for the conference title.
2.) UCLA (16-4, 5-2) LW: 5 – UCLA moved back up in the conference with two big wins over hot teams. The Stanford victory was the Bruins’ game from the beginning, but the Cal game was a little more challenging. UCLA is still in the running for the conference title, but will have to see Arizona lose three games without losing one itself, which is a tall order considering the Wildcats have yet to lose a game. What hurts the Bruins the most is that there is no return trip to Tucson in order to help even things out.
3.) Washington (13-8, 5-3) LW: 9 – The Huskies bounced back from a rough week and got a big sweep at home against the Oregon schools. Although Oregon is still struggling, Washington has been hot and cold all season long, but will get a short break this week with just the one game against Washington State. If the Huskies can come away with a victory, they can close the first half of conference play with an unexpected 6-3 record.
4.) California (14-6, 5-2) LW: 2 – The Golden Bears are on a bit of a slide after being swept on the road. The loss to USC was a surprise, but California getting swept was probably the worst thing that could have happened to the surging Bears. Things may not get much better for California as they host the Arizona schools and could likely lose one or both games, putting them further out of the title picture. However, a sweep in favor of California puts it right back into the race.
5.) Arizona State (15-5, 4-3) LW: 8 – Arizona State got its first sweep of the Pac-12 season this week, though it came against a battered Colorado team and a Utah team that is a year or two away from being a tough competitor. The Sun Devils are finding out exactly how their pieces fit together and have had to turn to other scoring options as Jermaine Marshall is still recovering from an injury suffered a few weeks ago.
6.) Stanford (13-6, 4-3) LW: 3 – It was a road split for the Cardinal in Los Angeles, but it just didn’t seem like Stanford had the same energy that it entered the week with. The loss to UCLA may have impacted the team more than originally suspected because the Cardinal almost dropped the Sunday game and would’ve fallen to the bottom of the pack.
7.) Oregon State (11-8, 3-4) LW: 7 – The Beavers did as expected on the road, picking up a win and a loss. Oregon State had a similar week to Stanford, but it had a better performance in the win than the Cardinal. It will still be tough to beat Oregon State at home, but on the road the Beavers aren’t going to do very much damage.
8.) Utah (14-6, 3-5) LW: 4 – The Utes gave Arizona a challenge on Sunday, but still got swept on the week. Though Utah came away winless, the two losses were two of the closest Pac-12 games of the week. The game against Arizona State came down to the wire and the loss to Arizona wasn’t decided until the final few minutes of the game when the Wildcats went on a big run to close it. Utah is struggling to find its place, but is still sitting as the team that is about to turn the corner and can’t get the milestone victory to do so.
9.) Oregon (14-5, 2-5) LW: 11 – The breaking point for Oregon’s season is approaching and the only thing that may be able to save the Ducks would be a sweep of Arizona, compiled with many more conference wins. With poor chemistry and a lack of defense, Oregon is not the conference title contender that many thought it was heading into conference play.
10.) Colorado (15-6, 4-4) LW: 6 – Without Spencer Dinwiddie, this Colorado team lacks a playmaker and leadership on the court. That much was evident as Xavier Johnson and Josh Scott took a few verbal shots at Arizona while losing by 12 and 21 to the Wildcats and Sun Devils, respectively.
11.) USC (10-10, 1-6) LW: 11 – I wasn’t sure that the Trojans would ever move out of the bottom spot in the conference, but it found a way. Beating Cal was a surprise in terms of numbers, but the matchup was a deadly one for the Golden Bears and USC executed brilliantly. The Trojans were also very close to beating Stanford on Sunday and that sort of effort needs to be rewarded.
12.) Washington State (8-12, 1-7) LW: 12 – Well, the Cougars were back to their old ways again this week. Washington State scored a dismal 17 points in the first half against Oregon en route to a 44-point total. As the season progresses, one thing seems to be more and more evident: there should be a new regime in Pullman come this time next year.
*Note: Rankings are determined through a combination of conference record, head-to-head matchups, and recent results.*
Arizona at Stanford
Arizona State at California
USC at Oregon State
UCLA at Oregon
Arizona at California
Utah at Colorado
Arizona State at Stanford
Washington at Washington State
USC at Oregon
UCLA at Oregon State