Boot Power Ratings™

The top pair survive scares to set up a Thursday showdown at Pauley, while Arizona uses up the last of their breathing room by getting swept at home. No matter what happens in the final week the conference tournament will be more important for more teams than ever. The early season dream of seven NCAA bids seems impossible, even six will take the right sequence of results.

Pac-10 BootPowerRatings
As of 3/5/08

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 (14-2)
Crushed ASU and then escaped a fired up "last home game" crowd at Arizona by a deuce. Can clinch the Pac-10 outright with a win over Stanford. Best news for Bruins could be Shipp emerging from a month long shooting slump. Assume that disturbing tendency of letting teams hang around until late in the game will be fixed by the urgency of "must win" games. Given their success as a Big Dance two seed I recommend losing to Stanford this week to avoid the extra pressure that comes with being a one. Polls:2.5 Sagarin:3 RPI:7  [Bruin Report Online]
2. Stanford (13-3)
Cardinal take a tough one vs. an inspired Washington, then top that excitement with a comeback win over WSU before a riotous senior day crowd. Ref Dave Libbey can fire up a crowd better than an Illinois Nazi with a megaphone, as even the elderly, well-heeled, "down in front" courtside Maples crowd rose to their feet in protest of a succession of dubious calls. I haven't seen grandparents that excited since Wilford Brimley and his buddies went for a dip in "Cocoon." Five straight games decided in the final minutes should have Stanford battle tested for Thursday's showdown with the Bruins. Polls:7 Sagarin:11 RPI:17 []
3. Washington St. (10-7)
Cougs now 0-6 vs. UCLA, Stanford and Arizona, 22-1 against the rest of the world. As a soph Robbie Cowgill had 10 double figure scoring games in 18 conference games, as a senior he has just 1. We need more Cowgill!!! Rival Huskies come to town for final home game of senior trio Low, Weaver and Cowgill. Polls:22.5 Sagarin:14 RPI:22  []
4. USC (9-7)
Handled Arizona easily but then got handled just as easily by ASU. This makes the Trojans 3-1 in the 1st game of Pac-10 road trips, 1-3 in the 2nd game. Perhaps Ritalin in their Gatorade could help these obvious ADD sufferers, clearly two nights in a hotel is too much for them to handle. The inside pair of Gibson and Jefferson combined for just 10 points, with 10 fouls, in the ASU loss. They'll need better than that from them with the powerful Stanford and Cal frontcourts coming to town. Polls:33 Sagarin:23 RPI:41  [SCPlaybook]
5. Arizona St. (8-8)
Recovered from gruesome home loss to UCLA (18 first half points) to roll the Trojans in a "must win" game. Jeff Pendergraph broke his streak of four single digit games with 21. Still don't see how he can be just 17th in scoring. Two shy of the magic 20 win mark as they close in Oregon. Polls:36 Sagarin:40 RPI:67  []
6. Arizona (7-9)
Swept at home by the LA schools, the Mildcats are staggering to the finish line like Pheidippides. Have now lost four of five and six of eight. The toughest schedule in the country is all well and good, but at some point you have to actually win games. Trying to pull off the rare feat of missing the tournament with an RPI in the 20s. Season finale at Oregon is huge for both squads. Polls:NR Sagarin:26 RPI:24  []
7. Oregon (7-9)
Well, they can beat the Beavers. Maarty "not a typo" Leuenen scored 32 points – on 10 shots! A mind blowing 56% on threes in conference, 9th in scoring, 5th in rebounds, 5th in FT%, 7th in A/T ratio. How about some all-conference love for this guy? A home sweep of the Arizonas is needed just to be part of the NCAA bubble. Polls:NR Sagarin:38 RPI:58  [eDuck]
8. Washington (7-10)
Huskies gain a road split by topping kal after a close loss at Stanford. Five players scored 10+ in the win, as the weenies bad defense does not play favorites. Coach Romar has his guys still playing hard, expect a battle this week at WSU. Polls:NR Sagarin:68 RPI:105  []
9. California (6-10)
Bad news Bears making the rest of the conference nervous – if the losing continues we could see a Lavin/Bibby/Evans situation, with still another good coach joining the conference to revitalize an underachiever. So c'mon USC and UCLA fans, think long-term! Root for the visitors this week and lose one for the Benster! Polls:NR Sagarin:60 RPI:93  [The Bear Insider]
10. Oregon St. (0-16)
Close, or at least, closer. Hung around with the Ducks until the three minute mark, something that seemingly hadn't happened since the days of Gary Payton. Marketing department's "Rally the Legend" campaign reeks of desperation, but it beats "What else is there to do in Corvallis?" Two chances left to remove the goose egg and ruin someone else's season. Polls:NR Sagarin:233 RPI:259

"We were the quintessence of athletic atrocity."

– Mike Newlin, Houston Rockets, 1976, after a loss to the Nets []

Are you fully subscribed to The Bootleg? If not, then you are missing out on all the top Cardinal coverage we provide daily on our website, as well as our full-length feature articles in our glossy magazine. Sign up today for the biggest and best in Stanford sports coverage with (sign-up) and The Bootleg Magazine (sign-up)!

The Bootleg Top Stories