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Blog Entry

Pac-12 a one-bid league? It's possible

Posted on: March 4, 2012 8:49 pm
With Cal, Arizona and Washington all losing this weekend, the Pac-12 is in at-large trouble. (US Presswire)

By Jeff Borzello

The mediocrity of the Pac-12 has been a running joke in the college basketball world this season, but this weekend took it to a new level.

Washington lost to UCLA, but still won the outright regular-season championship after California lost to Stanford on Sunday evening. Arizona, which had seen its at-large hopes get better and better recently, lost to Arizona State. The only team that helped its Selection Sunday chances was Oregon, which put a whooping on Utah.

The chances that the Pac-12 was only going to get one bid to the NCAA tournament seemed pretty low prior to the weekend, but now it’s not a far-fetched idea. To be honest, no one should feel remotely comfortable about its at-large chances heading into the conference tournament.

Let’s look at the resumes, in the correct pecking order.

California: The Golden Bears clearly have the best at-large resume of the quartet, and also went 3-0 against Oregon and Washington. The computer profile is pretty solid, and they are 6-5 against the top 100. On the other side, they have three sub-100 losses and didn’t finish with a share of the league title. The non-conference profile is also mediocre, as the best win outside of the Pac-12 was over Weber State. They probably felt safe for much of the season, but there’s still work to be done.

Washington: The Huskies don’t have a great profile, but they nonetheless won the outright regular-season championship, which will be a great bargaining chip on Selection Sunday. They are only 1-6 against the top 50 and 3-8 against the top 100. The only bad loss was Saturday’s defeat at the hands of UCLA. Overall, the Huskies did not beat a single NCAA tournament team, as the best non-league wins are over UC-Santa Barbara and Georgia State. Those are their only two non-conference wins over teams ranked in the top 200 of the RPI.

Oregon: The Ducks have slowly but surely played themselves into at-large contention over the past month, winning 11 of their last 14 games. Moreover, they thumped Washington by 25 points in early February. The RPI has moved into the top 50, as well. Now, for the bad. 19 of their 22 wins are over teams ranked outside the top 100, and they are 0-5 vs. the top 50. There’s one sub-100 loss, a home defeat to Oregon State. The non-conference profile is barren, with the best wins coming over Nebraska and UTEP. The thing that complicates their profile is Devoe Joseph, who missed the first six games of the season.

Arizona: The Wildcats are essentially finished when it comes to an at-large bid, after their terrible loss at Arizona State. It dropped them to fourth in the Pac-12, and is a sub-250 loss. The computer profile is mediocre, and 17 of their 21 wins came from outside the top 100. There is a road win at California on the ledger, but that won’t carry them to a bid. Arizona now needs to win the Pac-12 tournament if it wants a bid.

Can the Pac-12 really only get one bid? If California wins the tournament, it’s possible.


Since: Jan 22, 2007
Posted on: March 4, 2012 11:25 pm

Pac-12 a one-bid league? It's possible

Cal should be safe.  Washington and Oregon could use decent Pac 12 tournament runs; I have a feeling both get in, though, unless they totally bomb in the first round.

Since: Aug 21, 2007
Posted on: March 4, 2012 11:06 pm

Pac-12 a one-bid league? It's possible

You are right. A leage champion of a major conference is safe!

Since: Oct 1, 2010
Posted on: March 4, 2012 11:03 pm

Pac-12 a one-bid league? It's possible

"The only bad loss [for Washington] was Saturday’s defeat at the hands of UCLA." I'm not sure how you got that. UCLA were 4.5-point favorites in that game.

Since: Feb 14, 2008
Posted on: March 4, 2012 9:01 pm

Pac-12 a one-bid league? It's possible

You think the outright conference champion of a major conference won't make the tournament?  You must be kidding me. 

The Pac-12 will get at least 3 teams in.  The conference isn't any good but neither are any of the other garbage team being thrown around for bubble consideration.

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