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Arizona ranked No. 3 in KenPom’s preseason ratings

The Wildcats are projected to have a top-five offense this year

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St. Mary's v Arizona Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images

College basketball advanced stats guru Ken Pomeroy released his preseason ratings Sunday, and the Arizona Wildcats check in at No. 3 overall.

Here is his top 25:

Pomeroy projects Arizona will have the third-best adjusted offensive efficiency to go along with the 10th-best adjusted defensive efficiency in the country this season.

Last year, the Wildcats finished 15th and 29th in those categories, respectively.

Third overall is actually a step down from Pomeroy’s previous projections. Last March, he pegged Arizona as the No. 2 team in his early 2018-19 projections.

You can find Pomeroy’s entire preseason ratings here.

Here’s how all the Pac-12 teams rate:

  • Arizona, 3rd
  • USC, 12th
  • UCLA, 29th
  • Oregon, 35th
  • Utah, 58th
  • Stanford, 61st
  • Oregon State, 70th
  • Colorado, 97th
  • Arizona State, 100th
  • California, 100th
  • Washington, 130th
  • Washington State, 247th (wow that is bad)

Pomeroy projects Arizona will win the Pac-12 with a 15-3 conference record.

Usually, KenPom’s ratings are an incredible way to evaluate teams, but his preseason ratings have to be taken with a grain of salt because he’s simply projecting how teams will play, not measuring their actual efficiency as he does during the regular season.

Teams that Arizona face in non-conference play with notable ratings are:

  • Alabama, 23rd
  • N.C. State, 109th
  • Connecticut, 69th
  • Villanova, 1st
  • Purdue, 17th (Arizona will likely play Purdue or Villanova in Battle 4 Atlantis. Not both.)

Arizona is ranked No. 5 in the USA Today Coaches Poll to start the season. If you think they should be higher, you’re probably right.

At least one voter, Idaho State’s Bill Evans, left Arizona off his ballot altogether because of the UA’s role in the FBI recruiting bribery investigation.

Follow Ryan Kelapire on Twitter at @RKelapire