Pac-12 ATB: Stanford Advances, Arizona UpsetPosted by Connor Pelton on November 24th, 2011
The Lede. They are 5-0, in a championship game of a major early season tournament, and are the only undefeated team in the Pac-12 after 2.5 weeks of play. No, it’s not California; It’s not Arizona; It’s not UCLA, Washington, or even Oregon or Oregon State. It’s Stanford. Led by senior Josh Owens and sophomore Aaron Bright, the Cardinal are off to one of the best starts in team history, capped by a 15-point beatdown of a good Oklahoma State team on Wednesday. The win not only advances them to the NIT Season Tipoff Championship tomorrow afternoon against Syracuse, but it also adds a quality win to a lackluster OOC schedule.
The game was actually close for the first 15 minutes, but the Cardinal closed out the first half on a 17-6 run to lead by 11 at halftime. Coming out of the locker rooms, the Cardinal put any thoughts of an OSU comeback to rest with a 16-2 run. From then on, the closest the Cowboys would get was 15 (the final result) with eight seconds remaining.
Meanwhile… Last week, I proclaimed Arizona to be “back” after their big win over St. John’s in New York City. Yesterday however, the Wildcats took a “step back” by falling to San Diego State, 61-57. The loss broke Arizona’s 22-game (regular season) home winning streak. The Aztecs jumped out to an early 17-point advantage and never trailed the Cats. Junior forward Solomon Hill led Arizona with 14 points. They will look to bounce back on Tuesday when they play at New Mexico State.
The other big Pac-12 game took place in Lahaina, Hawaii, where UCLA dropped to 1-4 in their 79-63 loss against #14 Michigan. The Bruins have yet to win a game against a Division I team, but even worse is the fact that they have absolutely zero chemistry. If I were Ben Howland, playing together as a team would be the first thing I fix before Monday’s game against Pepperdine.
Today. Tired of your family or the NFL? The Pac-12 has plenty of options for you. At 9:30 PM EST Harvard will take on Utah in Nassau, Bahamas. At the same time, Arizona State will meet Fairfield in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. This is a tricky game for the Sun Devils. A win would advance them to the Old Spice Classic semifinals and give them some confidence, but a loss could be devastating to a young team that has already had a tough season. At 11:30 PM, in the last quarterfinal of the 76 Classic, Washington State will take on an undefeated Oklahoma team. While the Sooners come in undefeated the Cougars only loss came against Gonzaga on the road.