Week 13 Pac 12 Basketball Power Rankings
Pac 12 Power Rankings
The Pac 12 conference title race is shaping up to be one of the most exciting and entertaining of the college basketball season.
From top to bottom every team in the league has improved from last year and besides maybe Arizona there is not one clear favorite to win the conference regular season title. Even the Wildcats have had their struggles this season and could have slipped more than the two times they have already.
Oregon is in free fall mode, losing their third straight game without Dominic Artis. His importance to the Ducks may not be more evident than it is right now. Their next game is winnable (Utah) but after that they take on the Washington schools on the road, which can be problematic without Artis.
Colorado pulled off a big win over Oregon on Thursday and they have now won four of their last five Pac 12 games. They should be on a five game winning streak but they lost a disheartening game to Utah last Saturday. An even bigger weekend is coming up starting Thursday as the Buffs take on the Arizona schools.
Talk about a cluster in the standings, there are three teams tied with a 7-3 conference record and five teams tied with a 5-5 record. With each passing game the standings will be shaken up so consistency will be vital down the stretch.
As February draws on each and every game will take on a new importance. It’s safe to say that the level of play will step up considerably more this month and it will be worth watching.
Here’s how the Pac 12 stacks up in week 13.
12. Utah Utes
Record: 10-12 (2-8)
Last week: W 58-55 vs. Colorado, L 82-64 at Oregon State
The Utes honored their late, legendary head coach Rick Majerus during halftime of their game against Colorado and it seemed to inspire them to play better than they have all season. Sure they almost blew a 22 point second half lead but they weathered the storm and pulled off a nice victory. Utah was then smoked by the Beavers but they’ll take a 1-1 week.
This week: Feb 9 at No. 19 Oregon, Feb 13 vs. Arizona State
11. Oregon State Beavers
Record: 12-11 (2-8)
Last week: L 81-73 at Stanford, W 82-64 vs. Utah
Oregon State has a lot of talent to be this far down in the Pac 12 standings but that is how the season has played out for them. They get solid contribution from two players every game but they don’t see consistent play from the rest of the guys on a nightly basis. Last year they were inconsistent the whole season but played well in the Pac 12 tournament so maybe they’re planning on doing that again.
This week: Feb 10 vs. Colorado, Feb 13 at Washington State
10. Washington State Cougars
Record: 11-12 (2-8)
Last Week: L 79-65 vs. No. 8 Arizona, L 72-68 at USC
Washington State dropped both of their games last week and now they are just 2-8 in conference play. There wasn’t much expectation for the Cougars heading into this season and they are proving those prognostications correct. With that said, their past five losses have all come by single digits, which is something to build on. However, they have to win one of those games eventually.
This week: Feb 9 at UCLA, Feb 13 vs. Oregon State
9. Cal Bears
Record: 13-9 (5-5)
Last week: W 58-54 vs. No. 10 Oregon, L 66-62 vs. Arizona State
Once again it’s another week down, another .500 performance for the Bears. Cal had a nice upset win over Oregon at home, taking advantage of the Ducks without Dominic Artis. It would have been even better if they were able to grind out a victory over ASU but it just didn’t happen for them. It seems like Cal is mediocre at best even though they have two of the top scorers in the league in Allen Crabbe and Justin Cobbs. They have a chance to prove everyone wrong with their next game coming against No. 7 Arizona.
This week: Feb 10 at No. 7 Arizona, Feb 14 vs. UCLA
8. Washington Huskies
Record: 13-10 (5-5)
Last week: W 96-92 vs. Arizona State, L 59-57 at UCLA
The Huskies pulled off a thrilling win over Arizona State in the highest scoring game in the Pac 12 this season. It was easily one of their better wins of the season seeing how ASU has been playing this year. The week would have been even better if they were able to hold off UCLA but they lost on a buzzer beater to fall back to 5-5 in conference play. Big next two weeks for the Huskies as they take on USC, Oregon and the Arizona schools again.
This week: Feb 10 at USC, Feb 13 vs. No. 19 Oregon
7. USC Trojans
Record: 10-13 (5-5)
Last week: W 72-68 vs. Washington State
USC is playing a lot better under interim head coach Bob Cantu. They’ve won their last two games including an OT win over UCLA at Pauley Pavilion. The Trojans followed that up with a win over Wazzu in their lone game last week. Washington, Stanford and Cal are up next for the Trojans and they all have identical 5-5 Pac 12 records. Their next few games will make or break their season.
This week: Feb 10 vs. Washington, Feb. 14 at Stanford
6. Oregon Ducks
Record: 18-5 (7-3)
Last week: L 58-54 at Cal, L 48-47 vs. Colorado
The Ducks are reeling having lost their last three games and suddenly their once solid NCAA Tournament resume has taken a few hits. Missing in their winning equation is PG Dominic Artis and since he’s been gone the spacing on the floor is non-existent. Opposing teams are cluttering the lane and it’s forcing them to strictly shoot from the outside, something they aren’t that good at without Artis.
This week: Feb 9 vs. Utah, Feb 13 at Washington
5. Stanford Cardinal
Record: 14-9 (5-5)
Last week: W 81-73 vs. Oregon State, L 73-66 at No. 7 Arizona
Besides Arizona and Colorado, Stanford is probably playing the best basketball in the conference right now. Before falling to the Wildcats this past week they had won four of their previous five games including a beatdown of ranked Oregon. Their upcoming schedule will test them even further as they take on ASU, USC and UCLA. They are in a fifth-place tie with a 5-5 record so if they can string together some wins they can create some separation.
This week: Feb. 9 at Arizona State, Feb. 14 vs. USC
4. Colorado Buffaloes
Record: 15-7 (5-5)
Last week: L 58-55 at Utah, W 48-47 at No. 19 Oregon
How Colorado lost to Utah is beyond me. There’s no reason for them to lose to a team like the Utes with the talent they have but they didn’t play well for 32 minutes of that game. Colorado almost came back to win that game but couldn’t complete the 22 point turnaround. They were able to bounce back and secure a huge road win at Oregon, snapping the Ducks’ 20 game home winning streak in the process. Defense down the stretch won the game for Colorado, particularly the play from Spencer Dinwiddie and Andre Roberson. Now the Buffs enter their week of revenge as Arizona comes to town but they can’t overlook the Beavers on Sunday.
This week: Feb. 10 at Oregon State, Feb. 14 vs. No. 7 Arizona
3. UCLA Bruins
Record: 17-6 (7-3)
Last week: W 59-57 vs. Washington
UCLA was close to letting the game against Washington slip away on Thursday night but they were saved by a buzzer beater from Larry Drew. Despite the win it looked as if there was a little pouting from freshman phenom Shabazz Muhammad after he was denied the chance to be the hero on the last play. He was certainly calling for the ball but Drew took the shot himself. Don’t think there’s too much to it moving forward but it just shows how young these Bruins players really are.
This week: Feb 9 vs. Washington State, Feb. 14 at Cal
2. Arizona State Sun Devils
Record: 18-5 (7-3)
Last week: L 96-92 at Washington, W 66-62 vs. Cal
Don’t look now but the Sun Devils have moved into the second spot in this week’s power rankings and it would be hard to argue that they belong any lower. Carrick Felix has been an absolute force lately helping the Sun Devils win four of their previous five games. Although Jahii Carson is their leading scorer it is hard to deny that Felix has been their driving force during this stretch.
This week: Feb 9 vs. Stanford, Feb 13 at Utah
1. Arizona Wildcats
Record: 20-2 (8-2)
Last week: W 79-65 at Washington State, W 73-66 vs. Stanford
The one constant for the Pac 12 this season has been Arizona and since their loss to UCLA they have won their next four games. They have a tough game at home against Cal before they head out on the road for an epic Valentine’s Day rematch with Colorado. If you remember, their last meeting ended surrounded by controversy after the refs called off a game-winning three pointer from CU’s Sabatino Chen that really should have counted. It’s safe to assume that the Wildcats won’t be welcomed with loving arms in Boulder on Thursday.
This week: Feb 10 vs. Cal, Feb 14 at Colorado