Two unbeatens, four ranked teams pacing Pac-12 men's basketball

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2 (of 6) -  UCLA (10-0) and USC (9-0) are two of six remaining unbeaten teams in NCAA Division I as of Dec. 13. The Pac-12 (2) and Big East (2) are the only conferences with multiple unbeaten teams remaining.

4 - Pac-12 teams in the national rankings this week: No. 2 UCLA, No. 19 ARIZONA, No. 22 OREGON and No. 24/25 USC. The Pac-12’s four ranked teams are tied for the second-most of any conference in the nation with the Big East (four) and trails only the ACC’s six.

4 - Victories over Top 25 opponents for Pac-12 teams in non-conference play. COLORADO owns two of those victories with triumphs over then No. 22 Texas and then No. 13 Xavier. UCLA’s road victory over then No. 1 Kentucky and ARIZONA’s season-opening win over then No. 12 Michigan State are the others.

5 - Different statistical categories in which Pac-12 teams or student-athletes lead NCAA Division I through Dec. 12: Assists Per Game (UCLA, 23.9 apg), Blocks Per Game (OREGON, 8.8 bpg), Field Goal Percentage (UCLA, 56.2%), Three-Point Field Goal Percentage (UCLA, 47.1%) and Double-Doubles (Josh Hawkinson, WASHINGTON STATE, 8).

42 - Seasons since UCLA (10-0) and USC (9-0) have combined for as good of unbeaten starts to a campaign. The two schools combined to begin the 1974-75 season at 20-0 (UCLA 12-0, USC 8-0). The record combined unbeaten start for both programs is 30-0 set in 1970-71 (UCLA 14-0, USC 16-0). The Bruins went on to win national championships in both 1970-71 and 1974-75. 

PAC-12 TIPOFF

WEST COAST BLOCK PARTY: Pac-12 teams currently average 5.3 total blocked shots per game, the highest rate in the country. Four teams are ranked inside the national top 15: OREGON (1st, 8.8 bpg), WASHINGTON (5th, 7.1 bpg), USC (10th, 6.4 bpg) and UCLA (13th, 6.3 bpg).

INSIDE THE RANKINGS: UCLA’s No. 2 national ranking is the highest for a Pac-12 team since ARIZONA was No. 2 in Nov. 2014, and is UCLA’s best since being No. 2 during the 2007-08 season when it last reached the Final Four. ARIZONA’s 84 consecutive weeks in the AP Top 25 is the second-longest nationally behind Kansas’ streak of 148.

HOME SWEET HOME: Two Pac-12 teams have built home court winning streaks among the top 5 in the country. OREGON owns the nation’s third-longest home streak at 31 consecutive games, while CALIFORNIA ranks fourth with 26 home wins in a row. ARIZONA has won its last 11 at home, good for a tie for 18th nationally.

INSTANT OFFENSE: Nearly half of the Pac-12’s Top 15 scorers, as well as 10 of the Top 30, are in their first seasons in the league:

Markelle Fultz, Fr., WASH - 1st, 22.8 ppg
TJ Leaf, Fr., UCLA - 4th, 17.6 ppg
Charlie Moore, Fr., CAL - 4th, 17.6 ppg
Lauri Markkanen, Fr., ARIZ - 7th, 16.8 ppg
Shannon Evans II, Jr., ASU - 7th, 16.8 ppg
Torian Graham, Sr., ASU - 9th, 16.7 ppg
Derrick White, Sr., COLO - 12th, 15.6 ppg
Lonzo Ball, Fr., UCLA - 16th, 15.0 ppg
Rawle Alkins, Fr., ARIZ - 26th, 12.5 ppg
Kobi Simmons, ARIZ - 29th, 12.1 ppg

Freshmen also lead the Pac-12 in key stat categories:

Markelle Fultz, WASH - 22.8 ppg
Lonzo Ball, UCLA - 8.8 apg
TJ Leaf, UCLA - 67.9% FG
De’Anthony Melton, USC - 2.4 spg

RECORD WATCH

UCLA (97.5 ppg, 2nd in NCAA) is currently ahead of its league-record 92.3 points per game average set in 1967-68. OREGON (8.8 bpg, 1st in NCAA) and WASHINGTON (7.1 bpg, 5th in NCAA) are ahead of the Huskies’ record-setting block mark of 6.59 set last season.

At his current clip of 22.8 points per game, WASHINGTON’s Markelle Fultz is aiming to become the first freshman to lead the league in scoring since CALIFORNIA’s Shareef Abdur-Rahim in 1995-96 (Conference freshman record 21.1 ppg).

At his current rate of 8.8 assists per game, UCLA freshman Lonzo Ball is on pace to break the NCAA freshman assist mark held by St. John’s Omar Cook (8.69 apg, 2000-01). He’s also near the Conference single-season record for assists per game, currently at 9.19 apg by ARIZONA STATE’s Ahlon Lewis in 1995-96. 

WASHINGTON STATE’s Josh Hawkinson, who currently tops the Pac-12 at 11.4 rebounds per game, is seeking to become just the sixth player in Conference history to lead the league in rebounding for three seasons (no player has led the Conference for four seasons). The others:

Lew Alcindor, UCLA (1967-69)
Bill Walton, UCLA (1972-74)
Trevor Wilson, UCLA (1988-90)
Adam Keefe, STANFORD (1990-92)
Jon Brockman, WASHINGTON (2007-09)

KEY NON-CONFERENCE WINS (thru 12/12)

POWER 6 OPPONENTS (12-16)
#10 ARIZONA 65, #12 Michigan State 63 (Honolulu, HI)
USC 65, at Texas A&M 63
OREGON 69, Tennessee 65 (OT) (Lahaina, Hawaii)
COLORADO 68, #22 Texas 54 (Brooklyn, N.Y.)
UCLA 82, Nebraska 71 (Fullerton, Calif.)
STANFORD 66, Seton Hall 52 (Orlando, Fla.)
#14 UCLA 74, Texas A&M 67 (Anaheim, Calif.)
#11 UCLA 97, at #1 Kentucky 92
at COLORADO 68, #13 Xavier 66
ARIZONA 79, at Missouri 60
at UCLA 102, Michigan 84
at #24 OREGON 65, Alabama 56

PRESEASON CONFERENCE FAVORITES (8-5)
at STANFORD 67, Weber State 49
at OREGON 76, Valparaiso 54
at UCLA 114, Long Beach State 77
at WASHINGTON 94, Long Beach State 88
at ARIZONA 85, Texas Southern 63
#11 UCLA 97, at #1 Kentucky 92
CALIFORNIA 62, Princeton 51 (Pearl Harbor, Hawaii)
ARIZONA STATE 74, at San Diego State 63

2016 NCAA/NIT TOURNAMENT TEAMS (19-20)
#10 ARIZONA 65, #12 Michigan State 63 (Honolulu, HI)
at CALIFORNIA 82, South Dakota State 53
at ARIZONA 78, CSU Bakersfield 66
at STANFORD 67, Weber State 49
at OREGON 76, Valparaiso 54
USC 65, at Texas A&M 63
at UCLA 114, Long Beach State 77
at WASHINGTON 94, Long Beach State 88
OREGON 79, Connecticut 69 (Lahaina, Hawaii)
STANFORD 66, Seton Hall 52 (Orlando, Fla.)
#14 UCLA 74, Texas A&M 67 (Anaheim, Calif.)
at ARIZONA 85, Texas Southern 63
#11 UCLA 97, at #1 Kentucky 92
USC 91, BYU 84 (Los Angeles, Calif.)
CALIFORNIA 62, Princeton 51 (Pearl Harbor, Hawaii)
at COLORADO 68, #13 Xavier 66
ARIZONA STATE 74, at San Diego State 63
at UCLA 102, Michigan 84
at #24 OREGON 65, Alabama 56

OTHER (1-0)
at USC 78, SMU 73

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