Only three weeks remain in the regular season and the Pac-12 title race is as unsettled as the Iowa caucus.
There’s still a four-way tie for first in the loss column, with two more only a game behind, which means these last few weekends are going to be fun to watch.
After each week’s results we will rank the league, breaking down how they fared in their most recent games and looking ahead to what’s next.
1. Oregon Ducks (20-6, 9-4)
Last week: 2nd
Oregon held serve at home, where it is unbeaten this season, against Colorado and Utah. The Thursday win against the Buffaloes was particularly impressive since it saw the Ducks weather a huge drought in the first half and then take over down the stretch. If they can come out of the Arizona trip with a split or better the chances of winning the league outright are still there.
Up next: Thursday at Arizona State, Saturday at Arizona
2. Colorado Buffaloes (20-6, 9-4)
Last week: 1st
Colorado was primed to be all alone at the top after a 20-0 run in the first half at Oregon, but the Buffaloes were outscored 15-2 over the final 4:38 of the game to split with the Ducks and fall back to the pack. They rebounded with a dominant win at Oregon State, avenging their first conference loss back in January, and they’ll be favored in every remaining game.
Up next: Thursday vs. USC, Saturday vs. UCLA
3. Arizona State Sun Devils (17-8, 8-4)
Last week: 3rd
ASU is playing its best basketball as the stretch run approaches, winners of five straight including a road sweep in the Bay Area, only the second Pac-12 team to grab one. If not for a buzzer-beating loss at Washington State on Jan. 29 the Sun Devils could be alone in first place, and next weekend they get a chance to help thin the field at the top with a critical homestand that could also ensure them a third straight NCAA bid (and first that doesn’t involve the First Four).
Up next: Thursday vs. Oregon, Saturday vs. Oregon State
4. Arizona Wildcats (18-7, 8-4)
Last week: 4th
The Pac-12 has been the fourth-toughest conference to win on the road in, per KenPom, yet Arizona has claimed its last four road games to record the first two road sweeps of the year. The Wildcats’ offense continues to run hot and cold but the defensive efforts in wire-to-wire wins at Cal and Stanford harken back to some of Sean Miller’s best teams. Their title chances may come down to the visit from Oregon, though.
Up next: Thursday vs. Oregon State, Saturday vs. Oregon
5. UCLA Bruins (15-11, 8-5)
Last week: 5th
UCLA is the hottest team in the league other than ASU, winners of seven of its last nine with victories over Arizona and Colorado in that run. The home sweep of the Washington schools wasn’t particularly impressive, though rallying from 12-point second-half deficits in each is something for the Bruins to hang their hat on. Getting at least a split in the mountains is necessary for them to stay in the hunt for a top-4 seed.
Up next: Thursday at Utah, Saturday at Colorado
6. USC Trojans (19-7, 8-5)
Last week: 7th
Like its crosstown rival, USC wasn’t particularly stout in beating the Washington schools at home. But then again the Trojans were without their best player in freshman Onyeka Okongwu, who sat out both games while in the concussion protocol. They could afford to not have him for those opponents but not for the upcoming road trip.
Up next: Thursday at Colorado, Sunday at Utah
7. Oregon State Beavers (15-10, 5-8)
Last week: 8th
Oregon State finally broke from pattern by playing great against a lesser foe (Utah) and then looking completely lost against quality competition (Colorado). The Beavers making only 1 of 17 3-pointers is never a recipe for success, nor is having 2,000-point scorer Tres Tinkle have arguably the worst offensive game of his career in a 69-47 home loss to Colorado.
Up next: Thursday at Arizona, Saturday at Arizona State
8. Stanford Cardinal (16-8, 5-7)
Last week: 6th
Remember when Stanford was an elite defensive team that had started 4-0 in the Pac-12? The Cardinal’s defense is still good, ranking in the top 10 nationally, but they’ve now dropped four in a row and seven of eight after being swept at home by the Arizona schools. Not having Oscar da Silva can only be used as an excuse for the ASU game. The Arizona loss was just an example of a squad that peaked early and never got better in the areas it needed to.
Up next: Thursday at Washington, Sunday at Washington State
9. Washington State Cougars (14-12, 5-8)
Last week: 10th
Everything Washington State does to this point is gravy considering how much progress it has made in Kyle Smith’s first year, so getting swept at the Los Angeles schools wasn’t much of a surprise. The Cougars were up 12 at UCLA on Thursday, though, only to get run over late and fall in overtime, then Saturday’s 19-point loss at USC was a sleepwalk performance.
Up next: Wednesday vs. California, Sunday vs. Stanford
10. Utah Utes (14-11, 5-8)
Last week: 9th
There’s losing on the road, as Utah is good at doing, and there’s getting blown out on the road, as the Utes are also adept at. Now 0-7 away from Salt Lake City in Pac-12 play, by an average of 18.7 points, the prospect of playing games outside of their home state are downright frightening for this team.
Up next: Thursday vs. UCLA, Sunday vs. USC
11. California Golden Bears (10-15, 4-8)
Last week: 11th
Cal was swept by the Arizona schools at home, where it had been 4-1 in league play entering the weekend. The Golden Bears are just too offensively challenged outside of Matt Bradley to make up for a plodding style and porous defense, but they somehow have stayed competitive in most games.
Up next: Wednesday at Washington State, Saturday at Washington
12. Washington Huskies (12-14, 2-11)
Last week: 12th
Now on an 8-game losing streak, Washington continues to keep most games close but doesn’t have the oomph to actually win despite leading at the half at both USC and UCLA. It continues to be mystifying how much the Huskies are wasting Isaiah Stewart’s talent as a dominant inside scorer, with the freshman only attempting 27 2-pointers in the last four games.
Up next: Thursday vs. Stanford, Saturday vs. California