Conference Power Rankings: Pac-12

February, 1, 2013
2/01/13
10:53
AM ET
Just when everything seemed set up for Oregon to win the Pac-12 title, the Ducks got lambasted by Stanford on Wednesday, and now nothing is certain. Whatever happens, it appears that the race for the league crown is going to be one of the most interesting in college basketball. Here are this week's power rankings.

1. Arizona. The Wildcats posted a 57-53 win at Washington on Thursday despite shooting just 35.1 percent from the field and turning it over 17 times. With games coming up against Washington State, Stanford and Cal, Sean Miller's squad has a chance to extend its two-game win streak to five.

2. Oregon. The Ducks' nine-game winning streak came to an alarming halt in Wednesday's 76-52 loss at Stanford. Oregon played the game without starting guard Dominic Artis, who is out indefinitely with an injured left foot.

3. Arizona State. The Sun Devils rallied from an 11-point deficit to defeat Washington State 63-59 on the road. It marked just the second time in 10 years that ASU has won in Pullman. The Sun Devils (17-4) are off to their best start since 1981. Their 6-2 Pac-12 record is their best since 1994.

4. UCLA. What's happened to the Bruins? Two days after thwacking Arizona in Tucson, UCLA got hammered by Arizona State and then lost to USC at home Wednesday in overtime. Shabazz Muhammad was battling the flu in that game, but he still played 37 minutes and scored 22 points.

5. Colorado. The Buffaloes have won their last three games by an average of 13.3 points. And they averaged 78 points in victories over Stanford and Cal. Colorado now faces a crucial stretch of three straight road games, the biggest of which is a Feb. 7 showdown with Oregon in Eugene.

6. Stanford. No Pac-12 team has looked as good as Stanford during the past week. The Cardinal's 87-56 win over Utah was their most lopsided conference victory in nine years. The Cardinal followed that up with Wednesday's 76-52 win over No. 10 Oregon -- their first triumph over a top-10 team since 2008.

7. USC. Bob Cantu is doing an excellent job as the Trojans' interim head coach. USC turned in a heck of an effort in last week's 98-93 overtime loss at Arizona State. On Wednesday, the Trojans defeated UCLA in overtime at Pauley Pavilion. This team could've easily given up after Kevin O'Neill was fired. It hasn't.

8. Washington. Thursday's 57-53 home loss to Arizona was embarrassing. The Huskies tried to tie the game in the waning seconds on a 30-foot backdoor lob pass that was contested and off the mark. On its next possession, 7-foot center Aziz N'Diaye air-balled a 3-pointer. It was the first 3-point attempt of his career. Washington has now lost four straight.

9. Cal. The Golden Bears rallied from a 12-point deficit in the second half to defeat Oregon State on Thursday. Mike Montgomery's squad hasn't won back-to-back games since beating Cal-Santa Barbara and Prairie View A&M in late December. Allen Crabbe is averaging 19.8 points.

10. Washington State. The Cougars turned in a strong effort but fell to Arizona State 63-59 at home Thursday. Guard Mike Ladd has scored in double figures in nine straight games. Things won't get any easier Saturday when Washington State hosts Arizona.

11. Oregon State. The Beavers lost a 12-point second-half lead in Thursday's 71-68 setback at Cal. Craig Robinson's squad had 17 seconds to attempt a game-tying 3-pointer but couldn't get a shot off. Oregon State's last three losses have come by a combined seven points.

12. Utah. The Utes' only Pac-12 win is against Washington. On Sunday they lost a home game to Stanford by 31 points. Colorado should provide another tough test on Saturday. Jordan Loveridge averages team highs in points (12.1) and rebounds (7.1).

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