Around The Pac – Season Finale

Arizona: After beating Washington State convincingly on Thursday the Wildcats were stunned by Washington at home on senior night. The 69-63 loss knocked Arizona to 10-8 in conference play, earning them the fifth seed in the Pac-12 tournament. They will face off against the Huskies again in the opening round with USC waiting to play the winner. Although they are most likely a tournament lock, they stand to drastically improve their seeding.

Arizona State: The Sun Devils were upset by the Washington Huskies on Thursday setting up a must win situation for ASU Saturday. They would go on to pick up that win 83-74 and earn a first round bye with the third seed. Remy Martin will attempt to lead his team to a Pac-12 tournament title as they are currently a bubble team for the NCAA tournament. They will face the winner of Washington State and Colorado in the quarterfinals.

California: After winning three of their last four games the Golden Bears lost both match-ups with the Oregon schools last week. Matt Bradley has looked like the most improved player in the conference, but struggled against zone looks. With the two losses they fell down to the 10th seed and will face a tough Stanford team in the opening round Wednesday. The Bears’ last hope to continue their season is a Pac-12 tournament title.

Colorado: The Buffaloes ended their regular season with a heart-breaking overtime loss to Utah on Saturday 74-72. After an impressive season Colorado is currently on a four-game losing streak leading into the Pac-12 tournament. Once atop the conference, the Buffaloes are a sixth seed with a conference record of 10-8. Although they have struggled as of late, they are most likely headed to the big dance but will need a solid outing to bring some momentum into post-season play. They face off with Washington State on Wednesday.

Oregon: Payton Pritchard was sent off the right way for his last game in Eugene. With a win against Stanford, the Ducks won the outright Pac-12 regular season championship. The Ducks ended the regular season 13-5 and the 1-seed in the conference tournament and a first round bye. Oregon is a lock for the tournament being the 13th ranked team in the country but could stand to improve their seed in March Madness. They will face the winner of Oregon State and Utah on Thursday.

Oregon State: The Beavers took care of business beating both Bay Area schools at home this week. It was a solid performance after losing four straight games. Tres Tinkle continues his impressive play during his senior campaign. A loss will end the Beavers season as they face off with Utah Wednesday with the winner facing conference champs Oregon in the quarterfinals.

Stanford: The Cardinal dropped both match-ups this week and slid down to 9-9, earning the seventh seed this week. It’s been an up and down season for Stanford, but now they’re healthy and they need at least a couple wins to earn a berth in the NCAA tournament. They face off with Cal on Wednesday in the first round.

UCLA: Although the Bruins finished second in the Pac-12, many consider UCLA to be a bubble team at this time. The great second half of the season seems to be over-shadowed by the poor play early in the season. Mick Cronin’s squad lost on a last second three by USC knocking them out of a share of the Pac-12 crown. However they finished the season 12-6 earning the second seed and will face the winner of Stanford and Cal Thursday.

USC: The Trojans sent the seniors off with a rivalry win against UCLA in dramatic fashion Saturday. The win propelled USC into the fourth spot and a first round bye this week, with a record of 11-7. USC is a team that should be in the tournament as it stands, but a win or two would help solidify their spot. They will face off against the winner of Washington and Arizona Thursday.

Utah: It was a special way to end the season with an overtime victory against a rival team on senior day Saturday. The Utes finished the season 7-11 and grabbed the seventh seed this week. A loss will end Utah’s season as they hope to ride the shoulders of Timmy Allen to s Pac-12 tournament title. They face off with Oregon State in the opening win Wednesday.

Washington: It is possible that the Huskies very talented roster finally hit their stride and figured out how to win this week. After struggling all season, Washington picked up road wins against Arizona and Arizona State last week. Although they finished the season last in the Pac-12, they have a roster that could be dangerous if they are clicking. The Huskies face Arizona in the opening round Wednesday.

Washington State: The Cougars lost both match-ups last week in Arizona and have lost six of their last seven games. WSU finished the season 6-12 and 11th in the conference. Although they had a disappointing season, they were able to pick up wins against teams atop the conference including Oregon, UCLA and Arizona State. They face off against Colorado in the first round Wednesday.

~ Shane Potter
www.DuckNews.com