Pac-12 Basketball Catch Up Report: Arizona runs out ahead of the Pac-12

Casey Sapio-USA TODAY Sports

Giving some cliff notes on the start of the Pac-12 basketball season for those who have been wrapped up in Pac-12 football.

If you are like me, you keep an eye on Pac-12 basketball and watch games when you can in November and December, but you just too wrapped up in the end of the Pac-12 college football regular season and then bowl season. It can be whirlwind trying to absorb two months of basketball, so here are so quick power rankings and overview of the Pac-12 2013-14 basketball season thus far.

1. Arizona 15-0 2-0 No. 1 nationally

Recap - The Wildcats ran the table in their strong non-conference slate again - scoring huge wins over San Diego State, Duke, Michigan and UNLV. The Wildcats look big, balanced, athletic and poised as they are the nation's top-ranked team to start the Pac-12 season.

Star you should know - Nick Johnson Jr. G - Tough call here, but the all-around veteran and leader, Johnson is probably the Wildcats' best overall player.

Tournament chances - Barring an epic collapse, not only are the Wildcats a shoe-in, they are poised to be a No. 1 seed.

2. Colorado 13-2 2-0 No. 17 nationally

Recap - The Buffaloes played a very tough non-conference against Big 12 foes and really impressed with a win over Kansas and tough games against Baylor and Oklahoma State. They scored a massive win in the opening week of Pac-12 play, defeating Oregon last weekend.

Star you should know - Spencer Dinwiddie Jr. G - He should already be familiar to Pac-12 fans. He's long, athletic and gets to the basket as well as anyone in the country.

Tournament chances - The Buffaloes have already made great progress on building a very good NCAA Tournament résumé, looking like a potential four or five seed at the moment.

3. Oregon 13-1 1-1 No. 13 nationally

Recap - The Ducks didn't lose a game until Sunday and got some solid wins out-of-conference against Georgetown, Mississippi, Illinois and BYU.

Star you should know - Joseph Young Jr. G - Young came in as a transfer from Houston and immediately emerged as one of the Pac-12's top scorers, averaging 19 points per-game thus far.

Tournament chances - The Ducks look like they have the talent to get right back to the Sweet 16 and are right in the pack for a three or four seed.

4. UCLA 12-2 1-0 No. 25 nationally

Recap - The Bruins responded well to transitioning to Steve Alford from Ben Howland. They didn't really win any big games, but also avoided the bad losses that have plagued them in recent seasons and competed with Duke and Missouri.

Star you should know - Jordan Adams So. G - Adams is a strong guard with great scoring abilities who really came on late in 2012-13 and has done a great job bouncing back from an injury that ended his year last season in the Pac-12 Tournament.

Tournament chances - The Bruins are a step down from Colorado and Oregon right now, but can change that if they play at an elite level in the Pac-12, which they have the ability to do, and could sneak into the 3-5 seed range.

5. Cal 10-4 1-0

Recap - The Bears had a solid, but not great non-conference performance as they scored a good win over Arkansas and competed well with Syracuse, Creighton and Dayton, but ended up losing all three along with a loss to UCSB. They opened up Pac-12 play well, with a big win at Stanford.

Star you should know - Justin Cobbs Sr. G - Cobbs is stepping out of the shadow of Allen Crabbe and has emerged as the Bears' best scorer and senior leader at point guard.

Tournament chances - The Bears will likely be on the bubble all season again and there is a good chance that they will be fighting for one of the Pac-12's final spots so they will need to win the games they should win and steal some to get in as an 11 or 12 seed.

6. Utah 12-2 1-1

Recap - After a couple seasons of really struggling out-of-conference, the Utes only lost one game in a heartbreaker to a good Boise State team and looked solid in the Pac-12's opening week - taking Oregon to overtime and beating Oregon State.

Star you should know - Jordan Loveridge So. F - Loveridge was one of the better, lesser-known freshman standouts in the nation last year and is taking the next step forward, averaging 17 points and eight rebounds per-game.

Tournament chances - The Utes are making strides, but will have to put together a very impressive in-conference résumé to get into the tournament this year and that is a realistic possibility.

7. Washington 9-6 1-1

Recap - The Huskies had a very disappointing non-conference slate, losing every one of their big games and suffered a bad loss to UC Irvine. However, they opened up Pac-12 on a strong note, blowing out Arizona State on the road and taking Arizona down to the wire so there is hope in Seattle.

Star you should know - C.J. Wilcox Sr. G - Everyone already knows, Wilcox, one of the best shooters in the nation. He's still doing his thing, averaging 20 points a game and shooting 40 percent from behind the arc.

Tournament chances - The Huskies can get themselves back into the tournament conversation but can only afford to lose a few Pac-12 games from here to be a serious at-large candidate due to how many games they lost out-of-conference.

8. Arizona State 12-3 1-1

Recap - The Sun Devils had one of their best non-conference runs in a while, as they only dropped two and to good teams (Creighton & Miami) and got two quality wins against Marquette and UNLV. Pac-12 play got off to a tough start for the Sun Devils though, as they dropped their opener at home to Washington.

Star you should know - Jahii Carson So. G - Following up his stellar freshman year by being one of the most explosive guards in the entire country for the second season in-a-row.

Tournament chances - The Sun Devils looked like they were in a good place to compete for a bubble seed before Washington downed them at home, now they will have to win consistently in the conference to prove that they truly do deserve to be in consideration.

9. Stanford 9-4 0-1

Recap - The Cardinal made some noise by knocking off UConn on the road and it gave them buzz going into the conference season but they lost their Pac-12 opener at home to Cal.

Star you should know - Dwight Powell Sr. F - Everyone knows the Canadian big man for his ability to score and rebound, but this year he is leading the Cardinal in assists with 4.1 per-game.

Tournament chances - The opening loss to Cal was a blow, but the Cardinal can bounce back if they perform well and their win over UConn could really help if they get on the bubble.

10. USC 9-5 0-1

Recap - The Trojans improve in non-conference play and got some solid wins over Xavier, Boston College and Dayton but opened up conference play with a horrifying 107-73 loss to UCLA.

Star you should know - Byron Wesley Jr. G - Wesley has stepped up his game and has become the Trojans' best scorer and rebounder even though he is a 6'5 guard.

Tournament chances - The Trojans obviously could still make the tournament logistically, but they are going to have to bounce back in Pac-12 play in a big way.

11. Oregon State 8-6 0-2

Recap - The Beavers scored a surprise win at Maryland in non-conference but had a few bad losses and opened up Pac-12 play with competitive losses at Colorado and Utah.

Star you should know - Roberto Nelson Sr. G - Nelson isn't the best overall player in the conference, but he is a pure scorer loves to put it up from outside and can regularly knock it down.

Tournament chances - The Beavers would have to make a serious run in Pac-12 to have a chance to be considered for the NCAA Tournament.

12. Washington State 7-7 0-2

Recap - It was a tough non-conference run for the Cougars and start to Pac-12 play as they got rolled by Arizona and Arizona State.

Star you should know - DaVonte Lacy Jr. G - Unfortunately he recently had to have surgery to get his appendix removed, but when healthy, Lacy is the Cougars' only real scorer and a strong player that is great at getting to the basket.

Tournament chances - It would require a serious turnaround for the Cougars to be a serious NCAA Tournament contender.

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