Pac-12 Basketball: Early Returns and Special Awards


The Pac-12 basketball scene has already been full of drama and intrigue to this point in the season. The season is still early but a lot can be learned about each team up to this point. Things can and will change throughout the season but here are my early season Pac-12 special “The Husky Haul” awards. NOTE: These were inputted before this evening’s Pac-12 games.

-Drama Queen-

The drama queen award seemed to be locked up two days ago but some new evidence has come forward to promote other schools as the university with the most drama. However, regardless of the new information the drama queen award goes to UCLA. A team that was once listed as the favorite in the conference is off to a cold 0-2 start. They have already suspended Reeves Nelson, then re-instated Nelson, and since then Nelson still shows little concern for rules. He is just a “prisoner running the asylum”. Ben Howland seems to be already in panic mode.

-Pac-12 Favorite- 

As far away as you may think this is from reality, at this point in the season, the team that looks like they are most likely to succeed is California. While they don’t seem to be the most athletic or explosive team they seem to be the most fundamental and ready to compete now.

-Most Underwhelming-

This award is a shoe-in for Arizona. They were ranked 16th coming into the season, they had one of the top recruiting classes in the country last season and yet they have looked ugly. Granted they have only lost 1 game (against Mississippi State), Arizona as a team has been completely underwhelming. They have benched their star point guard because of maturity issues, they have suspended their other star freshman Sidiki Johnson for “behavior unbecoming of a Arizona athelte,” and they just don’t look like they have enough size to compete at a high level this year.


The sleeper team in the Pac-12 this year looks to be Oregon State. Who would have thought? Jared Cunningham was really good last year but this year he is even better. He may even be already the favorite for Pac-12 Player of the Year award. Well at least he is the only one playing like it, at this point. He is averaging 26 points a game and is carrying the Beavers on his shoulders.

-Best Front Court-

Before the season started the favorite would have been easily UCLA, with all the depth and talent they have in the forward position. But they haven’t even been able to scrape together a win yet this year with that front court. Colorado’s front court shows some promise with Austin Dufault and Andre Roberson (G/F combo). As of now I will give it to Colorado but this is such an unproven group throughout the Pac-12.

-Best Back Court- 

The most talented back court in the Pac-12 is Washington. They have 4 guards that can start and 5 when Scott Suggs comes back from injury; Abdul Gaddy, Terrence Ross, CJ Wilcox, and Tony Wroten. St. Louis exposed some fundamental issues for UW but the talent and potential of the front court surpasses any other in the Pac-12.

-Most Well-Rounded-

California has a completely well-rounded group of players. They have decent production out of the front and the back court and will probably keep this spot all season.

-Season Slipping Away-

The news in the last few days out of Oregon gives them this award. Dana Altman was able to lure a 5-star guard to Eugene in Jabari Brown. However, Brown left the team over the weekend and has no plans of returning. This team just went from a sleeper team to a team that is losing hope in their season because of the loss of Brown.

Early Season “All Pac-12 1st Team” 

  • G Jared Cunningham, Oregon State
  • G Terrence Ross, Washington
  • G/F Andre Roberson, Colorado
  • F Jesse Perry, Arizona
  • F Brock Motum, Washington State

Early Season “All Pac-12 2nd Team” 

  • G Allen Crabbe, California
  • G CJ Wilcox, Washington
  • G Faisal Aden, Washington State
  • F Harper Kamp, California
  • F Aaron Fuller, USC

Early Season “Freshman Team” 

  • G Tony Wroten, Washington
  • G Nick Johnson, Arizona
  • G Davonte Lacey, Washington State
  • F David Kravish, California
  • F Angelo Chol, Arizona

Chime in with your thoughts below if you feel inclined.