Arizona State and Arizona have identical 1-2 marks in Pac-12 conference play.
ASU sits at 10-6 overall and UA is 11-5.
The Wildcats own the head-to-head victory over the Sun Devils, with Sean Miller’s team besting Bobby Hurley’s in Tucson, 75-47.
One might assume, based on that, that Arizona would be ranked higher in the Pac-12.
That assumption, at least according to one writer, would be wrong.
Jesse Sowa of the Corvallis Gazette-Times has ASU No. 4 in his recent Pac-12 power rankings.
He has Arizona No. 6.
ASU is coming off a road split of Oregon and Oregon State.
Arizona lost to both of the Oregon schools.
Sowa wrote of ASU: “A road split has this squad showing signs of life. Despite some terrible blowout losses, the Sun Devils have a chance to boost their Big Dance hopes this week.”
He wrote of Arizona: “The Wildcats let two winnable games get away, including a disappearing act in the second half Sunday. But they can more than right the ship if they get two wins this week.”
Arizona State hosts Colorado and then Utah this week.
Arizona hosts Utah and then Colorado.
No matter the ranking for both Pac-12 schools, this week’s conference games are pivotal for their NCAA Tournament chances.
Other sites didn’t agree with Sowa’s assessment of Arizona and ASU. They ranked the Wildcats over the Sun Devils in the Pac-12.
SB Nation has Arizona No. 4 in the conference and ASU No. 7.
Brian J. Pederson wrote of the Wildcats: “The Wildcats went from being about two minutes away from a huge win in Eugene on Thursday to getting swept at the Oregon schools for the first time in 14 years. The 82-65 loss Sunday at OSU was Arizona’s worst against the Beavers in 31 years and saw what had for most of the year been a pretty solid defense get eaten alive.”
He wrote of the Sun Devils: “A win Thursday at Oregon State ensured the Sun Devils at least a road split but they weren’t able to put up any real resistance against Oregon on Saturday. Now ASU gets its next three at home where it tends to be much better on the defensive end than the 1.09 points per possession it has allowed so far in league play.”
Building the Dam has UA No. 6 and ASU No. 7.
It wrote of Arizona: “Losers of four of their last five and five of their last seven, it’s simply not a good time for this Arizona. They look disjointed and unable to piece together a forty minute contest. Their defense has been especially porous. The Wildcats compete in stretches, not games and you can see the anguish on Sean Miller’s face when dealing with this group. Something is missing in Tucson.”
It wrote of Arizona State: “If there’s ever been a time for a team to really have their moxie put to the test, it’s the upcoming slate of games for this Sun Devils team. Bobby Hurley’s passion is never lost, but Arizona State has been trading wins and losses as of late. If they can find a way to take advantage of home contests against Colorado, Utah and Arizona, this team has a puncher’s chance at saving things.”
The San Jose Mercury News also had Arizona No. 6 and Arizona State No. 7.