Pac-10 week one snapshot

It is tough to get an adequate gauge of things after only one weekend of Pac-10 play, but we do get a nice snapshot of a competitive league. There were not a ton of surprises in terms of outcomes, but how the games played out showed me something.

Arizona State The Devils are not very good, they certainly not very talented, but they play hard. ASU won't win many games this year but if what we saw this weekend holds true, the Devils will make teams work for wins in Tempe.

California It is obvious that the Bears just aren't the same team without Devon Hardin. The loss of him and Jordan Wilkes is just too much to overcome. As good as Ryan Anderson has been you can't overcome the loss of two talented big men.

Ayinde Ubaka would be among the best Pac-10 point guards, but he just doesn't have the talent around him to put up the assist numbers that Darren Collison and Mustafa Shakur do.

Oregon The Ducks may be 13-0, but they are still a mystery. Their win over Oregon State was not overly impressive. Need to see a little more of this athletic bunch.

Oregon State Seem to be in the same boat as ASU. They have more talent than the Devils, but may not have enough to finish higher than eighth in the league. Their last three games six games have been pretty impressive. They are 4-2 with all four wins by 13 points or more and the two losses coming by seven to LSU and three to Oregon.

Stanford IF the game against the Wildcat was truly a coming out party for the Lopez twins and not just the lack of inside play by the Wildcats, then Stanford will be a factor in the middle of the conference. They don't have a lot at the wing, I consider Lawrence Hill a power forward, but they play smart, sound basketball. Add two impressive seven-footers to that list and things just got a lot tougher in Palo Alto.

UCLA The game against Washington State had you wondering if the Bruins were a product of a preseason schedule that saw them play every game after the Maui Classic in the state of California. The game against Washington three days later should have erased any doubt. UCLA's defense will keep them in every game. When their offense explodes, few teams can touch them.

USC USC is for real. They are a good team that will contend for an NCAA Tournament birth. The win over Washington was huge, but they could regret losing to WSU a few days later. They will need to hold serve on their home court against the other middle of the Pac teams. Getting Gabriel Pruitt back helps big time.

Washington I've long said that the Huskies will be a better team in March than they are right now. An 0-2 start in Pac-10 play shows just that. There is no shame in getting swept in Los Angeles, but it may have cost them a chance at the regular season Pac-10 crown.

Washington State The Cougs proved something this weekend. There split was good enough, but pushing UCLA until the end shows me this upstart team is for real. Winning in Pullman will be tough.

POWER POLL 1. UCLA – The Bruins win over Washington is more impressive than Arizona's win over Stanford.
2. Arizona – Swept the Bay Area schools, but they should have.
3. Oregon – Unbeaten, but still unproven.
4. Washington State - Beat USC head to head, and traded blows with the Bruins.
5. USC – Big win over Washington.
6. Washington – The Huskies will overcome the rough start.
7. Stanford – Gave Arizona fits.
8. Oregon State – Showed me something in loss to Oregon.
9. Cal – Too many personnel losses.
10. Arizona State – Sendek getting the most out of this group.

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