Pac-12 conference preview

Pac-12 title up for grabs as conference stumbles through pre-conference play

The Pac-10 became the Pac-12 last summer by adding two schools to the conference- Colorado and Utah. As pre-conference basketball play wraps up in the Pac-12, it is pretty clear that this move was not made to benefit the conference on the court (although, on the gridiron, only Utah qualified for a bowl this year).

The Utah Utes have started out 3-9 heading into conference play. They squeaked out a 3-point win over San Diego Christian, then went on to lose eight straight games.

Utah has lost by 20+ points to schools like Boise State, UNC-Asheville, Fresno State, Cal State Fullerton, and Weber State- losing by an average of 22 points in their nine losses.

Meanwhile, Colorado has gone 8-4 but against a weak schedule. The strongest team the Buffaloes have beaten so far is Georgia (by two), and they have fallen to Wichita State, Maryland, Colorado State and Wyoming.

The additions of Utah and Colorado are not helping a conference that, at least in basketball, is in dire need of assistance.

Most expect another down year for the Pac-12, and, so far, the West’s most renowned conference is living up to their low expectations. The Pac-12 currently has no schools in the top 25, and their strongest team is Stanford, who went 7-12 in conference play last season.

All-in-all, this year will be another rebuilding season for the Pac-12. At the same time, the conference competition will be very interesting. While some teams look superior leading into conference play, the lack of a juggernaut program leaves the Pac-12 title up for grabs.

Here are the Pac-12 power rankings heading into conference play, based on each team’s performance in previous games:

1. Stanford
2. Arizona
3. Washington
4. Oregon State
5. California
6. Oregon
8. Washington State
9. USC
10. Colorado
11. Arizona State
12. Utah

And now, an assessment of each team’s pre-conference results:

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