Pac-12 men’s hoops power rankings: Washington remains atop as winning streak continues

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1. Washington (14-4, 5-0) — Previous rank: 1
Opponents: Stanford (W, 80-64), Cal (W, 71-52)
Player of the week: Dominic Green (14.0 PTS, 2.5 TRB, 1.0 AST, 50.0 3P%)

Washington continues to push it along, extending its winning streak to seven games with stompings of Stanford and Cal. The defense was once again in full effect, holding the Cardinal and Bears to an average of 58 points.

2. Arizona (14-5, 5-1) — Previous rank: 2
Opponents: Oregon (L, 59-54), Oregon State (W, 82-71)
Player of the week: Brandon Williams (15.0 PTS, 4.0 TRB, 3.5 AST, 1.5 TOV)

All good things must come to an end, as Arizona’s winning streak was snapped at the hands of Oregon. Chase Jeter suffered a nasty fall and only played four minutes against Oregon State, but Ryan Luther stepped up in Jeter’s absence and posted his first career double-double as a Wildcat. Jeter is questionable for Arizona’s game against USC.

3. Arizona State (13-5, 4-2) — Previous rank: 5
Opponents: Oregon State (W, 70-67), Oregon (W, 78-64)
Player of the week: Zylan Cheatham (13.5 PTS, 11.0 TRB, 3.5 AST, 66.7 FG%) and Taeshon Cherry (13.5 PTS, 3.5 TRB, 50.0 FG%, 60.0 3P%)

Down but not dead. Arizona State has teetered on the line between contender and pretender for the last several weeks, but with two impressive wins over Oregon State and Oregon, it’s clear that it’s not going away just yet. The next couple weeks should answer the question of this team’s true colors as six of its next seven games are Tier B-level games.

4. Oregon (11-7, 2-3) — Previous rank: 6
Opponents: Arizona (W, 59-54), Arizona State (L, 78-64)
Player of the week: Payton Pritchard (14.0 PTS, 5.0 TRB, 4.0 AST, 2.5 STL)

Since the disaster against UCLA, Operation Damage Control for the Ducks has been encouraging. Very few teams can stroll into Arizona’s gym and walk away with a win, but Oregon did just that. Oregon flirted with doing the same several nights later in Tempe, but Arizona State rattled off 19 unanswered points, and Zylan Cheatham captured Kenny Wooten’s soul with a monster poster. Perhaps Payton Pritchard’s big game will provide him with some confidence and provide the Ducks with more firepower.

5. Oregon State (11-6, 3-2) — Previous rank: 3
Opponent: Arizona State (L, 70-67), Arizona (L, 82-71)
Player of the week: Tres Tinkle (23.0 PTS, 8.5 TRB, 5.0 AST, 2.0 STL)

After riding high for the past several weeks, Oregon State came crashing back down to reality. For what it’s worth, losing a pair of Tier A games to two of the Pac-12’s best by a combined margin of 14 points does show that these Beavers know how to battle. This upcoming slate against the Washington schools should be interesting. Washington State should be a guaranteed win, but Washington will call on Oregon State to bring out its best.

6. UCLA (10-8, 3-2) — Previous rank: 4
Opponent: USC (L, 80-67)
Player of the week: Kris Wilkes (13 PTS, 9 TRB, 4 AST)

7. USC (10-8, 3-2) — Previous rank: 8
Opponent: UCLA (W, 80-67)
Player of the week: Nick Rakocevic (21 PTS, 12 TRB, 4 AST, 1 BLK)

A tale of two cities. Rather, a tale of two parts of a city. From UCLA’s perspective, the team has dropped two straight against quality opponents since the Oregon comeback. The defense has been fine, but the offense has looked out of sorts against legitimate defenses. For the Trojans, they defended home court, and Nick Rakocevic and Bennie Boatwright had 21 points each, the second time this season they’ve both scored at least 20 points in a single game.

8. Utah (9-8, 3-2) — Previous rank: 9
Opponent: Colorado (W, 78-69)
Player of the week: Timmy Allen (21 PTS, 10 TRB, 4 AST, 3 STL)

It’s time to officially throw Timmy Allen’s name in the running for Pac-12 Freshman of the Year. In conference play, Allen is in the top three in points (third), rebounds (third), assists (second) and steals (first). No other freshman checks all those boxes. With Allen, combined with a pair of microwaves in Sedrick Barefield and Donnie Tillman, there’s an “any given night” feeling with this team. Utah will take on the Bay Area schools this week beginning with Stanford, a matchup with legitimate power-ranking implications.

9. Stanford (9-9, 2-4) — Previous rank: 7
Opponents: Washington (L, 80-64), Washington State (L, 78-66)
Player of the week: Josh Sharma (15.0 PTS, 8.0 TRB, 80.0 FG%)

More than anything, this was a discouraging homecoming for Daejon Davis. In his return to his home state, Davis shot 7 of 22 and put up 23 combined points against both Washington and Washington State. If Stanford is going to get the most out of its core before Kezie Okpala likely leaves for the league, it will need Davis to start tapping in to his potential.

10. Colorado (10-7, 1-4) — Previous rank: 10
Opponent: Utah (L, 78-69)
Player of the week: Daylen Kountz (13 PTS, 3 TRB, 3 AST)

“We don’t have anything right now.” That is a direct quote from Colorado head coach Tad Boyle. Not encouraging. The Buffaloes have now lost six of their last eight, and if McKinley Wright IV continues to miss games with a shoulder injury, things could get very ugly. Luckily for Colorado, Wright may be back against Cal in an opportunity to right the ship.

11. Washington State (8-10, 1-4) — Previous rank: 11
Opponents: Cal (W, 82-59), Stanford (L, 78-66)
Player of the week: Robert Franks (18.0 PTS, 7.0 TRB, 1.5 AST)

Guess who’s back? Back again. Franks is back. Tell a friend (now everybody move to the hardwood). After sitting out four games because of an injury, Robert Franks returned to the court. The timing couldn’t have been better as Washington State throttled Cal by 23 points, avoiding the Pac-12’s basement. The wins may be few and far between for the rest of the season, but the Cougars will surely be enjoying this one.

12. Cal (5-13, 0-6) — Previous rank: 12
Opponents: Washington State (L, 82-59), Washington (L, 71-52)
Player of the week: Paris Austin (9.5 PTS, 5.5 TRB, 3.0 AST, 3.0 STL)

Barring the improbable, the Bears all but solidified their place at the bottom of the Pac-12 for the rest of the season, as Washington State handed Cal its worst loss of the season by margin of defeat. The lone silver lining of the week comes in the form of David Serge. After spending two years as team manager, Serge made the team as a walk-on, and in the closing minute of Cal’s loss to Washington State, Serge knocked down a triple for his first career points.

Justice delos Santos covers men’s basketball. Contact Justice delos Santos at [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter @justdelossantos.