The Pac-12′s only ranked team looked like a lock to roll through the early part of its conference schedule, but the undefeated and No. 3 Arizona was seconds away from being 0-2 in Week 1 of Pac-12 play. After the Sabatino Chen scare on Thursday, the Wildcats survived a 60-57 nail-biter against Utah on Saturday. The Utes’ Jarred Dubois had a good look at a potential game-tying 3-pointer that touched every part of the rim before falling to the floor at McKale. Arizona coach Sean Miller tells the Daily Star’s Bruce Pascoe his team’s perimeter defense has regressed.
Utah’s 0-2 start to the conference season likely surprises few – considering the Utes won just three Pac-12 games in their inaugural season – but the Utes are less than 10 points away from being 2-0. Freshman Jordan Loveridge tells the Salt Lake Tribune’s Tony Jones that he and his teammates will return home with confidence to host the L.A. schools.
Another Pac-12 team could be joining Arizona in this morning’s updated rankings. UCLA muscled its way to its seventh consecutive win on Saturday, a 68-60 slugfest against Stanford. Much to coach Ben Howland’s delight, the Bruins showed off improved defense in the first weekend of conference play. Freshman Shabazz Muhammad’s effort has been a big part of the defensive turnaround, writes Ryan Kartje of the Orange County Register.
Arizona State joined the undefeated party Sunday night when the Sun Devils dispatched Colorado at home, 65-56, thanks to eight blocked shots from junior center Jordan Bachynski.
The first conference rivalry game of the basketball season went down to the wire as Washington State rallied from a 21-4 deficit only to fall to Washington, 68-63, Saturday in Pullman. Washington State’s leading scorer, Brock Motum, and the rest of the Cougars couldn’t quite overcome their slow start and fell to the Huskies for the fourth straight time.
Washington held Washington State to just 26.7 percent from the field, a defensive effort led by sophomore forward Desmond Simmons, who was charged with defending Motum. The Huskies’ lockdown defensive effort can be traced back to trust, writes Percy Allen of the Seattle Times. Shortly before Seahawks fans celebrated a playoff win, Seattle residents caught their first glimpse of UW women’s basketball on Pac-12 Networks. The Huskies beat Arizona by 11 to improve to 10-3 overall and 2-0 in conference play.
Cal’s No. 7 women’s basketball team remained undefeated in conference play Sunday when the Bears edged Colorado, 53-49. Here are some assorted visual moments from the game, courtesy of the San Jose Mercury News.
Stanford’s men left the Southland 0-2, but the No. 4 women’s team used a 15-6 second-half run to get past Utah on the road Sunday, 70-56.
ESPN’s Adam Schefter turned heads on Sunday when he cited “league sources” that maintain Oregon football coach Chip Kelly will remain in Eugene after speculation abounded that he would be headed for one of a handful of NFL jobs. The Oregonian’s Adam Jude confirmed Schefter’s report Sunday evening. Here’s what Pac-12 Digital’s Bryan Fischer has to say about it all.
Some sad news came out of Corvallis on Friday when former Oregon State safety Mike Lopez passed away from ALS, commonly known as Lou Gehrig’s disease. Lopez played for the Beavs from 1982-85 and was the founder of the TEAM Cure ALS Foundation. You can help the foundation’s cause by donating here.
After defeating Stanford in dramatic fashion, USC missed its chance at starting conference play 2-0 after winning just one conference game in 2011. The Trojans missed 10 free throws in a loss to the Cal Golden Bears in Los Angeles on Saturday, 72-64. Coach Kevin O’Neill told the Daily News’ Scott Wolf he “couldn’t be happier” with senior Jio Fontan, who had 11 points in the loss.