Things are tight at the top of the Pac-12 standings with five teams within one game of the lead. Oregon and Arizona are sitting in first place while USC is in the Pac-12 cellar. No Pac-12 team has won more than two games in a row so keep that in mind when making NCAA basketball predictions.
All four favorites won on Thursday with Oregon State the only underdog to cover against the NCAA expert picks as a 10-point underdog in the 71-63 loss to UCLA.
Arizona fell from 9th to 11th in the Associated Press poll and dropped three spots to No. 12 in the USA Today coaches poll leaving no Pac-12 teams in the top 10 in the two national polls. No other Pac-12 team is in the top 25 in the polls.
The Wildcats are third in the NCAA NET rankings despite having a Quad 2 and a Quad 3 loss. The next Pac-12 team in the NCAA NET rankings is Colorado at No. 31 followed by Utah at No. 35.
1. Colorado (15-6 SU, 11-10 ATS) at Utah (14-7 SU, 10-11 ATS)
- Date/Time: Saturday, Feb. 3, 5 p.m. ET
- TV & Live Stream: TBS.com
Utah is one of three Pac-12 teams still undefeated at home while Colorado has lost five of its six road games.
Colorado has won three of the last four games against Utah. However, the last time Utah welcomed the Buffaloes to town, the Utes 73-62 as a four-point favorite. Six of the last eight times that Colorado played at UConn, the game landed under the Las Vegas odds total.
Colorado saw its four-game winning streak snapped as the Buffaloes shot 39% in a 78-69 loss at Washington State. KJ Simpson led the Buffaloes with 25 points.
Utah is coming off road losses to Washington and Washington State. Leading scorer Branden Carlson went from scoring 34 points against Washington in the first meeting of the season to being limited to nine points in Saturday’s loss.
Utah has covered in seven of its 11 home games while Colorado is just 1-5 against the spread on the road.
2. Oregon State (11-10 SU, 10-9-1 ATS) at Southern California (8-13, 9-12 ATS)
- Date/Time: Saturday, Feb. 3, 7 p.m. ET
- TV & Live Stream: Pac-12 Network
Has there been a bigger disappointment from the Power-5 conferences than USC? The Trojans had the second-best Pac-12 championship odds when the season began but is alone in last place in the Pac-12 after Thursday’s nine-point loss at home to Oregon. That did end a run of four straight double-digit losses.
It hasn’t helped that sophomore guard Oziyah Sellers is the only USC player to appear in every game this season. Second-leading scorer Isaiah Collier hasn’t played since a Jan. 10 loss to Washington State.
Oregon State has a recent win over Arizona but the Beavers are 0-5 on the road this season.
Jordan Pope is averaging 21.3 points over his last three games but he needs more help for the Beavers to move up in the Pac-12 standings. He hit the game-winning shot in the upset of Arizona.
Jordan Pope was ready for the moment 🤩
After hitting the buzzer-beating game winner, the Oregon State star chatted with @AdamsonAshley about his big shot, the team’s outlook, and how both Beavers’ hoops programs are succeeding. 🦫 pic.twitter.com/7HpbdXMAB8
— Pac-12 Network (@Pac12Network) January 31, 2024
Oregon State has won the last two meetings and covered in each of the last five.
The Beavers are one of four Pac-12 teams with a winning ATS mark on the road this season. USC is 4-6 ATS at home.
3. Washington State (15-6 SU, 10-11 ATS) at Washington (12-9 SU, 11-10 ATS)
- Date/Time: Saturday, Feb. 3, 9 p.m. ET
- TV & Live Stream: Pac-12 Network
It seems hard to believe that this will be the last time Washington State plays at Alaska Airlines Arena as the conference rival of the Huskies with Washington leaving for the Big Ten and Washington State is one of the two Pac-12 teams that didn’t find a new home in the wild world of conference realignment.
Washington State won six of the last eight games against the Huskies including a 93-84 road win in the 2022-23 regular-season finale as both teams shot at least 50% from the field and 40% from 3-point range. It was the highest scoring game between the teams since 2016.
That marked the third time in the last four meetings that the game landed over the total.
Despite losing its top three scorers off last year’s team, the Cougars are a game out of first place in the Pac-12 standings. Idaho transfer Isaac Jones and freshman Miles Rice are both averaging 15.6 points per game with both of them averaging more points per game on the road than at home this season.
Keion Brooks has four consecutive 20-point games and he is averaging 21.4 points over the last seven games for Washington.
Only 6 of Washington’s 11 home games have gone over the total.
Questions of the Day
Which Pac-12 team has had the most games go over the total?
Oregon State has seen 15 of its 20 games go over the total this season while 14 of USC’s games went over as well.
Who has the best odds of winning March Madness among Pac-12 teams?
Arizona was tied for second with +1000 championship odds when the season began and those odds have moved to +1400. That is still the best mark among Pac-12 teams.