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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

Pac-12 Basketball: Power rankings, week 2

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Arizona already has a big win and big-time freshmen that may lead to more success, but who is on the Wildcats’ heels in this week’s rankings?

1. Arizona—The Wildcats earned the top spot because they beat a ranked team without their best player. It is early in the season, but the Wildcats get the slight edge over Oregon at the moment. Arizona’s top three scorers are freshmen, so the Pac-12 Conference better beware of the diaper dandies.

2. Oregon—The Ducks lost the top spot because they lost on the road to an unranked team without their best player. Dillon Brooks could return this month from his foot injury, but there is still no timetable on it. Chris Boucher has stepped up in Brooks’ absence, but they need more out of their guards.

3. UCLA—Lonzo Ball is balling out at half-empty gyms for a ranked UCLA team. Bryce Alford is actually shooting well, so you know the season is young. UCLA started off last season very well before missing the tourney, so maybe the Bruins can be more consistent this year.

4. California—The Golden Bears entered the top 25 despite Ivan Rabb not playing a game yet. Every ranked team in the conference is missing their top player, with the exception of UCLA, but the Bruins do have Bryce Alford.

5. Colorado—The Buffaloes received top-25 votes last week so their stock is trending upward in the pollster’s eyes. Josh Fortune, Derrick White and others are stepping up with the loss of Josh Scott to graduation.

6. USC—A solid sleeper pick in the Pac-12, the Trojans are again flying under the radar this season. Jordan McLaughlin and Bennie Boatwright could help the Trojans break into the top 25 at some point.

7. Utah—If you are a fan of offense, the Utes are currently averaging 90 points a game with five double-digit scorers. Utah lost its top two scorers in Jakob Poeltl and Jordan Loveridge and the Utes’ scoring increased by 13 points.

8. Washington—Despite having arguably the most talented NBA prospect in Markelle Fultz, Washington could miss the tourney. This has the makings of Ben Simmons 2.0 where Fultz drops 30 and the Huskies lose by 20. He could be college basketball’s answer to Russell Westbrook this year.

9. Stanford—I still believe the Cardinal should let Christian McCaffrey play for their basketball team. At best, he could energize the team and at worst, he could sell tickets. So what do they have to lose?

10. ASU—It is time for the Sun Devils to fatten up on non-conference opponents before Pac-12 play starts. Unrelated, ASU head coach Bobby Hurley resembles Bart Simpson, in case you needed another reason to dislike the former Duke star.

11. Washington State—Josh Hawkinson has looked exceptional for the Cougars, but it is non-conference. Last year, they won only one conference game, so the Cougars seemingly have nowhere to go but up this year.

12. Oregon State—After coming off an 83-58 loss to Nevada, the Beavers find themselves at the bottom of the Pac-12. The last time Oregon State made the tourney without a Gary Payton was 1985, so history is not on their side.


Follow Ivan Leonard on Twitter.


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