7. Arizona (14-4)
Even with what we’ve seen these last few weeks, there’s little question that Arizona is the best team in the Pac-12. The Wildcats have been great for much of the season, but suffered a few head-scratching losses to Stanford and Washington State in recent weeks. They’ve won just two road games this season, though one of them was actually at Duke back in November. Still, with the talent here, it’s only a matter of time before this team gets back on track, right?
They looked the part on Wednesday, coasting to an 82-67 home win against a USC team that hasn’t looked its best this season. Caleb Love had 20 points while Keshad Johnson had a double-double with 10 points and 13 rebounds. Saturday was far less kind to the Wildcats, though they still pulled out another win, this time prevailing 77-71 against UCLA. After trailing by 9 at the half, the Wildcats used a strong second period and were led by Pelle Larsson’s 22 points.
We say that Arizona looks like the overwhelming favorite, yet they keep struggling with the teams in this league. That’s not to say there isn’t talent in the Pac-12, but this is a Top 10 Arizona team in a conference lacking another ranked opponent. These coming months are about preservation, especially if Arizona wants one of those top seeds again in the NCAA Tournament. For now they’ll need to learn how to win away from home, heading to Oregon State and Oregon next week.