Arizona State Sun Devils: Pac-12 Contender or Pretender?
The Arizona State Sun Devils missed out on the NCAA tournament last season, but will have a good chance of making it in the 2013-14 college basketball season. However, will they be contenders or pretenders in the Pac-12?
The problem with the Pac-12 this year is the fact that so many teams are expected to compete for a conference title. Essentially eight teams have a shot at dancing. All eight of those teams will probably not make the tourney, but many teams will still compete in the Pac-12.
Arizona State is definitely a contender, though, especially with Jahii Carson coming back. Carson very well could be the best player in the conference as he averaged 18.5 points per game, 3.7 rebounds per game and 5.1 assists per game last season.
Players like Jermaine Marshall will have to have an instant impact, though. Marshall previously played for Penn State and he put up 15.3 points per game last season. Him and Carson could make up a very lethal scoring duo.
Even with those two having big seasons, the Arizona Wildcats will be the favorites to win a conference title. That tends to happen when a team is ranked No. 5 in the country to start the season. However, teams like Colorado and UCLA could steal the show.
Arizona State has some talent and I am going to call it a contender right now. That does not mean finishing in the top three or even the top five of the conference standings will be a given. Regardless, the Sun Devils will have the talent to make the Big Dance and they could improve off of their 22-13 record from last season.