Quick Previews: Pac-12 Conference

Our conference quick previews are just quick predictions for the all-conference teams and the conference standings. If you came here looking for a deep analysis on each team, you’ve came to the wrong place. We’re too lazy to do that 🙂

The Conference of Champions, as Bill Walton would call it, hasn’t won a national championship since Arizona in 1997. That’s a long, long time. Could this be the year that drought ends? Oregon is a serious contender to end it, as they return 4 starters and key role players from a team that won 31 games last year. That includes All-American Dillon Brooks. They also bring in a nice recruiting class, with an intriguing JUCO transfer in Kavell Bigby-Williams. We have the Ducks ranked #3 in our Preseason Top 25. We also have Arizona in our Top 10, at exactly #10. The Wildcats took a huge hit, though, when Ray Smith tore his ACL for the third time and retired from basketball. There are also questions about the status of Allonzo Trier. He didn’t dress in their exhibition game and did not travel to the team for their game against Michigan State in Hawaii on Friday. But if the Trier questions are answered, him combined with Kadeem Allen and a dynamite recruiting class could make Arizona a big threat to Oregon. But if he can’t play, Oregon becomes that much more favored to win the Pac-12. With all the question marks surrounding Arizona, UCLA could emerge as the biggest threat to Oregon. The Bruins will have an electric backcourt in Bryce Alford, Aaron Holiday, Isaac Hamilton and big time recruit Lonzo Ball. The Bruins also have 7 footer Thomas Welsh that could average a double-double this season. If they put all the pieces together, UCLA could be one of the nation’s best team.

Cal lost three huge pieces from last season in Jaylen Brown, Tyrone Wallace and Jordan Mathews, but the Bears bring back Ivan Rabb, a boast of other big men and Jabari Bird. The Bears won’t be as good as last season, but should still get back to the Big Dance. Colorado, Oregon State, USC and Washington are all teams that could go either way. Colorado brings back 3 starters and gets Xavier Johnson back this season. Oregon State lost a do it all player in Gary Payton II, but Tres Tinkle could be poised for a breakout sophomore season. USC should have a talented starting lineup, but depth is a question mark. And Washington has one of the most intriguing freshman in the country in Markelle Fultz, but not much around him. Out of those 4, we have Colorado getting in, Oregon State being the first team out and USC and Washington both missing as well.

Pac-12 Projected Standings

(Records from 2015-2016 season)

1. Oregon: 31-7 (14-4)

2. Arizona: 25-9 (12-6)

3. UCLA: 15-17 (6-12)

4. Cal: 23-11 (12-6)

5. Colorado: 22-12 (10-8)

6. Oregon State: 19-13 (9-9)

7. Southern Cal: 21-13 (9-9)

8. Washington: 19-15 (9-9)

9. Utah: 27-9 (13-5)

10. Stanford: 15-15 (8-10)

11. Arizona State: 15-17 (5-13)

12. Washington State: 9-22 (1-17)

First Team All-Pac 12

(Stats from 2015-2016 season)

Ivan Rabb, Cal (12.5 PPG, 8.6 RPG) PLAYER OF THE YEAR

Markelle Fultz, Washington (247Sport’s #5 recruit in 2016 class)

Dillon Brooks, Oregon (16.7 PPG, 5.4 RPG)

Isaac Hamilton, UCLA (16.8 PPG, 4.2 RPG)

Tres Tinkle, Oregon State (13.1 PPG, 5.4 RPG)

NCAA Tournament Bids: Oregon, Arizona, UCLA, Cal, Colorado


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