This week in Pac-12 men's basketball
• MARQUEE MATCHUPS... CALIFORNIA, which is receiving votes in both polls, will host No. 6 Wisconsin, while STANFORD hits the road for a matchup with No. 9 Texas... Those games will mark the 15th and 16th games played against non-conference ranked opponents this season. Last year, the Pac-12 played 10 regular season games against ranked opponents.
• POLL WATCHING... Three Pac-12 teams remain in this week’s Top 25 - ARIZONA (No. 3 AP/No. 3 Coaches), WASHINGTON (13/13), and UTAH (14/14)... The Wildcats have been ranked in 47-straight AP polls, including 27-straight weeks in the top 10 and 25-consecutive weeks in the top five... It’s the highest ranking for the Huskies since coming in at No. 12 on Nov. 30, 2010.
• HOT STARTS... ARIZONA is off to a 12-0 start; and is nation’s the lone team to start 12-0 in each of the last three seasons. The ‘Cats have won 39 consecutive non-conference regular season games dating back to December 2011, which is currently the longest streak in the nation... At 10-1, CALIFORNIA is off to its best start since the 1959-60 season when it stared 20-1 and finished as NCAA runner-up... WASHINGTON is off to a 10-0 start, its best start since 2005-06 when it started the season 11-0.
• NO PLACE LIKE HOME... So far this season, Pac-12 teams have racked up a 71-7 (.910) home court record. ARIZONA leads the way with a 8-0 home mark, followed by OREGON STATE at 7-0, CALIFORNIA and UTAH at 6-0, and STANFORD at 5-0... Arizona is currently riding a 29-game winning streak at McKale Center, the fifth-longest in program history. Since 2010-11, the Wildcats lead the Pac-12 in home court winning percentage and is 82-11 (.882).
• WALLACE WORLD... CALIFORNIA junior guard Tyrone Wallace has increased his scoring average by more than 10 points from a year ago and ranks second in the Pac-12 at 19.5 ppg. The 6-5 guard also ranks third in the league in rebounding at 8.9 rpg. Since moving to point guard this season, Wallace has nearly doubled his assist average, improving from 2.7 apg his first two seasons to 4.4 apg this year to rank seventh in the conference in assists. Wallace is the only individual in the Pac-12 to rank in in the top-10 in the league in all three categories through Sunday’s games.
• MIGHTY JOE YOUNG... OREGON senior guard Joe Young is one of just four players in the nation averaging at least 19 points, five rebounds and four assists per game. The other three players on that list are A.J. English of Iona, Wesley Saunders of Harvard and Tyrone Wallace of California... Young leads the Pac-12 in free throw percentage after hitting 42-of-44 from the charity stripe (.955)... Young struggled from three-point territory earlier this season, hitting just 16-of-65 (.246), but has nailed 11 of his last 21 attempts (.524) from beyond the arc.
• SEND IT TO KING MOONRACER... Pac-12 reject leaders are among the nation’s best. WASHINGTON sophomore C Robert Upshaw leads the nation with 4.5 blocks per game. His 45 blocked shots already rank eighth on the school’s single-seaon list and are the most since Matthew Bryan-Amaning had 54 swats in 2010-11. OREGON freshman F Jordan Bell is also eighth on his school’s single-season list with 36 blocks. His 3.3 blocks per game are second in the Pac-12 and sixth in the NCAA.
• DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE... Eight Pac-12 teams are limiting the opposition to shooting less than 40 percent from the field. Five teams are among the NCAA’s top 29 teams, led by WASHINGTON which is fifth at 33.8 percent, while OREGON STATE is sixth at 34.2 percent... The Huskies also limit the long ball as they rank 11th in three-point field goal percentage (.261).
• NCAA TOURNAMENT FUTURE SITES... The NCAA announced preliminary round sites for the 2016-18 NCAA Tournaments. In 2017, UTAH will host 1st/2nd Rounds in the EnergySolutions Arena, while the Pac-12 will host the West Regional in San Jose at the SAP Center. The NCAA announced that Glendale, Ariz., (University of Phoenix Stadium) will be site of the 2017 Final Four. It’ll be the first western site to host the Final Four since UCLA won the 1995 national title in Seattle.
Mon., Dec. 22,, Time (local to site), Network
DePaul vs COLORADO (1), 11:30 a.m. HT (ESPNU)
No. 6 Wisconsin at CALIFORNIA, 6 p.m. PT (ESPN2)
UC Santa Barbara at OREGON, 6 p.m. PT (P12N)
Tulane at No. 13 WASHINGTON, 8 p.m. (P12N)
Tues., Dec. 23
Detroit at ARIZONA STATE, 1 p.m. MT (P12N)
STANFORD at No. 9 Texas, 6 p.m. CT (ESPN2)
South Dakota State at No. 14 UTAH, 7 p.m. MT (P12N)
No. 3 ARIZONA at UNLV, 7 p.m. PT (CBSSN)
Ohio or George Washington vs COLORADO (1), TBD (ESPNU)
Thurs., Dec. 25
TBD vs COLORADO (1), TBD (ESPN)
Sun., Dec. 28
Harvard at ARIZONA STATE, 12 noon MT (P12N)
UCLA at Alabama, 5:30 p.m. CT (ESPNU)
UC Davis at WASHINGTON STATE, 3 p.m. PT (P12N)
Stony Brook at No. 13 WASHINGTON, 5 p.m. PT (P12N)
CSU Bakersfield at CALIFORNIA, 7 p.m. PT (P12N)
Rankings listed are AP poll; Game times local to site
This Week’s Tournaments/Neutral Sites
(1) Diamond Head Classic, Honolulu, Hawai’i. (Stan Sheriff Center)
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