Boot Power Ratings™

Only surprise of the week illustrates how Arizona has changed under Coach Kevin O'Neill. They lose at run-and-gun UW, but win handily at deliberate WSU. Los Angeles teams both on PETA list for Beaver abuse as their combined 63 point margin of victory qualifies as animal cruelty. Five teams look solid for NCAAs, ASU with some work to do, three on life support, one already cremated.

Pac-10 BootPowerRatings
As of 2/27/08

Below are our exclusive BootPowerRatings™ of the Pac-10 conference. Each week during the basketball season, we will release our secret-formula rating of all teams of the Pac-10. The BootPowerRating™ (BPR) is calculated by utilizing a wide range of factors rumored to include: past results, statistics, common-opponent comparative results factor, strength-of-schedule, home-venue environment, cheerleader attitude and an unrevealed school spirit multiplier. The resulting rating score falls within a 1-100 scale, where 100 approximates a championship-bound team and a score of 1 is somewhere south of D-1.

1. UCLA (12-2)
After the expected OSU smack down, the Bruins had a surprising amount of trouble putting away the Ducks. Down seven with under 10 to play and tied with under five, they put the game away with their usual stellar foul shooting down the stretch. But a potentially distracting element could be on the horizon, as NBA draft talk includes not only Love but also Collison and Westbrook. I'm in favor of the entire starting five declaring for the draft. Today. Arizona trip this week the last time they leave Los Angeles area until the Sweet 16. Polls:4 Sagarin:4 RPI:10  [Bruin Report Online]
2. Stanford (11-3)
Cardinal stay poised against a desperate and fiery Oskie bunch and emerge a 10-point victor behind a balanced attack. Odd box shows just seven turnovers and a rare negative rebound margin, but Goods lives up to his name and Robin Lopez shuts down gives Ryan Anderson once again. Final home stand of the year as the Washingtons come to town. Polls:8 Sagarin:12 RPI:19  []
3. Washington St. (9-6)
Perfect example of a strange season-long trend in the Wacky Pac. Cougs smother ASU on Thursday and look poised to run their winning streak to five against an Arizona team fresh off a loss at Washington. Guess again, Beavis. Zona by 10, giving each team a weekend split. Road underdogs other than OSU needing a win for a 1-1 trip are now 4-2 outright winners against teams who won their Thursday game, with Oregon the only visiting team losing in an 0-1 vs. 1-0 game (again, other than OSU). Now in a catfight for 3rd, Bay trip on deck. Polls:22 Sagarin:15 RPI:23  []
4. USC (8-6)
Rallied to take their "must win" game against Oregon behind an electrifying performance from OJ Mayo (18 points in final 8.5 minutes). Struggled early vs. OSU, getting out to a mere 34-5 lead. With news that Hackett is somehow returning, USC medical reports are now as dependable as my aunt describing the girl she wanted me to meet as "cute." One win in Arizona could clinch an NCAA bid, but getting to 3rd in conference will take more than that. Polls:33,34 Sagarin:25 RPI:39  [SCPlaybook]
5.(tie) Arizona St. (7-7)
Nice 30 point scoring uptick from WSU loss to UW win, giving Devils the road split they needed. Huge test Thursday as UCLA comes to town, first meeting had ASU starring as the rented mule. 84-51 Bruins. RPI, polls and computers all show that NCAA bid can still go either way, so avoiding getting swept at home a must (last four in their own gym were three losses and an OT win). Polls:42 Sagarin:39 RPI:70  []
5.(tie) Arizona (7-7)
Win at WSU was their most impressive of the season. Most obvious "key player" in the conference is Jordan Hill. When he plays 30+ minutes they are 7-1, when he plays less than 30 minutes they are 0-6. You don't have to wear cardinal and white to figure out that getting Hill into foul trouble turns the Wildcats into kittens. No single digit seed had more than 11 losses in 2007 tournament; says here is that Cats definitely will. Polls:33,31 Sagarin:22 RPI:17  []
7. California (6-8)
A painful team to watch. With a huge upset at Stanford within their grasp, Ben's bumbling boys played bonehead basketball. Poor shot selection, silly fouls, defensive lapses, silly non-fouling, you name it. Physically talented squad just needs a collective IQ bump to be a contender. Perhaps more fish at training table? Home sweep of the Washingtons this week absolutely vital to keep slim postseason chances alive. But 2-5 at home...rut row. Polls:NR Sagarin:49 RPI:78  [The Bear Insider]
8. Oregon (6-9)
And then, depression set in… Ducks drop two heartbreakers, blowing a nine-point halftime lead at USC and an 11 point lead inside 14 minutes at UCLA. At-large bid dependent upon sweeping the last three, this week's trip to Corvallis is certainly a nice start to that goal. No inside presence (last in blocks) is not a good combination with no defensive pressure (last in opponents' turnovers). Polls:NR Sagarin:38 RPI:56  [eDuck]
9. Washington (6-9)
If anyone can figure these guys out, let me know. Wonderful taste of big home win over Arizona was quickly replaced by foulness of a bigger loss to ASU. Reminiscent of spicy deviled eggs going down vs. the burp three hours later. Maples visit in front of yours truly next up, the Boot Computer adds four points to the Huskies' chances based upon my in-person viewing history. A .500 season overall rapidly becoming the new goal. Polls:NR Sagarin:76 RPI:119  []
10. Oregon St. (0-15)
Damn, we need a mercy rule. Not for a game, for a season. Forget the 51 points worth of combined losses from two weeks ago, how does 63 grab ya? The good news is they close with three home games, starting with Oregon. The bad news is their fans get to see this mess in person. If ever it was possible for an 0-15 season to be salvaged by one win, a home victory over the Ducks would be it. Odd as it sounds, I'm very curious to see if the Beavers can do the impossible. A win or close loss will show that coach Mouton hasn't lost his squad, another big L and his career could be off the rails for good. Polls:NR Sagarin:232 RPI:248

"Winning is a habit. Unfortunately, so is losing."

–Vince Lombardi []

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