Posted on February 5, 2021
Last week Stanford was able to walk out of the McKale Center with their first win in Tucson since 2008.
While the Cardinal were able to sweep the season series with Arizona, Stanford was unable to sweep the road trip to the desert, dropping their matchup with Arizona State on Saturday night.
The Cardinal have not swept that road trip since 2004. This season USC and UCLA have already completed the sweep of the desert trip.
It is just the fourth time since 1984-85 that at least two schools have swept road games over the Wildcat and Sun Devils, and the first time it has happened since 2011-12, when Washington and Oregon did so.
Counting the Trojans and Bruins this season, only 24 teams have swept road trips to Arizona since the 1984-85 season.
Eleven of the 22 teams since then to accomplish the feat prior have went on to win or share the regular season conference championship. That comes out to 11 of 18 years or 61.1%.
The Los Angeles teams currently sit One and Two in the standings, so the trend could continue.
Sweeps of the Arizona road trip since the 1984-85 season
*Won at least a share of conference title
The real anomaly recently is Washington State in 2018-19. The Cougars won just four conference game that season, with two of them coming in the state of Arizona
Three Pac-12 teams find themselves in the nation’s Top 50 in total rebound rate. Arizona leads the way at 11th with a 56.4% rate. The Wildcats are followed by USC 55.8% (18), UCLA 54.3% (29) and Colorado 53.3% (49).
Individually, several Conference performers have been efficient on the glass. Jabari Walker is averaging 13.6 rebounds per 40 minutes (44th best in the nation) for Colorado.
Rodrigue Andela is coming off the bench for Oregon State and is pulling down 13.6 boards per 40 minutes as well. Andela is logging 13.5 minutes on the floor per game for the Beavers. One reason for the limited minutes is the production of Warith Alatishe and his 12.8 rebounds per 40 minutes.
UCLA’s Jalen Hill is also getting 12.8 per 40. All four of them are in the top 90 nationally. Andela and Alatishe are both getting 5.6 offensive rebounds per 40 minutes, which ties them for the 29th-best marks in the nation.
Alatishe is averaging a Pac-12-best 3.33 offensive rebounds per game the 26th-most in America. Just ahead of USC’s Evan Mobley, who is pulling down 3.12 offensive boards per game. Mobley’s average is the fourth-most nationally among first-year players this season, and has helped the Trojans to the 14th-highest offensive rebound rate in the nation at 34.6%
Hitting the offensive glass has helped Evan Mobley record seven double-doubles for the Trojans this season, the most of any Pac-12 player and tied for 11th most in the nation.
Among freshmen nationally, only Arkansas State’s Norchad Omier has had more—with nine—this season. Washington State’s Efe Abogidi has five double-doubles on the season, tied for the third-most in the nation among freshmen players.
McKinley Wright has scored 1,637 points in his career to go along with 604 assists and 584 rebounds to become one of just three Pac-12 players to reach 1,500 points, 500 assists and 500 rebounds. (Ron Lee-Oregon 1972-76 and Peyton Pritchard- Oregon are the other two.)
With 16 rebounds, Wright will become the first Pac-12 player ever to reach 1,600, 600 and 600 in those categories. (Andre Miller did reach those marks during his career at Utah, but obviously well prior to the Utes joining the Pac-12)
A look at this week’s matchups
USC at Stanford
The Trojans and Cardinal get things started with a Tuesday meeting prior to both teams squaring off with their rivals later in the week. Stanford will get to tip off in Maples Pavilion for the first time this season.
The Cardinal are the only team in the nation that have not played on their home court yet. (South Carolina is the only school that came close to matching Stanford as the Gamecocks did not get on the floor at home until January 2nd.)
Stanford did not seem to mind Santa Cruz too much, putting together a 5-0 record in their home away from home. USC has gone 4-2 away from the Galen Center this season, but the Trojans have not won in Palo Alto since 2013, as the Cardinal have won the last five meetings between the teams in Maples.
The Cardinal have been the victor in seven of the last 11 between the teams. The last five between the teams have been decided by an average of 4.8 points per game
Arizona and Arizona State head to the Mountains
Overall, the series between Utah and Arizona is tight, with the Wildcats holding just a 33-30 edge. Recently, it has been all Cats, though, as UA has won 18 of the last 21, and are 14-2 vs. the Utes as conference opponents.
Arizona is 5-2 vs. Utah in Salt Lake City since the Utes joined the Pac-12.
Arizona defeated Colorado in Tucson earlier this season for their 16th win over the Buffs in 22 meetings as Pac-12 opponents. Colorado owns a 5-2 mark over the Wildcats in the Colorado Events Center since joining the Pac-12.
The last three meetings in Boulder have been decided by a total of 13 points.
Utah is 9-6 vs Arizona State since joining the Pac-12. The Sun Devils have taken the last two meetings and own a two-game win streak in Salt Lake City. Utah has taken seven of the last 10 in the series.
The last 10 between the schools have been decided by an average of 16.9 points, and only three of those have been single-digit affairs.
Colorado has won three in a row over Arizona State and 7 of 10. The Buffs have won the last five meetings in Boulder, and since joining the Pac-12, they are 6-1 at the CEC vs. Arizona State. Last season, Remy Martin averaged 24 points in two games against Colorado.
Washington schools visit the Oregon schools
Oregon is 15-3 vs Washington State since the 2010-11 season. The Cougars did take the last meeting 72-61 in Pullman in the only meeting last season. The Cougs have never won in Matthew Knight Arena, and the Ducks have won nine in a row over WSU at home.
The last time Washington State left Eugene with a win was in the 2008-09 season in the middle of a six-game win streak for WSU.
In December, Oregon earned a three-point win in Seattle with four players in double figures and six players totaling at least eight points in the game.
Washington was less balanced getting 45 of their 71 points from Quade Green (26) and RaeQuan Battle (19). The win was the Ducks 10th in the last 11 meetings with UW.
The Huskies did win the last meeting at MKA in the 2018-19 season. The last two games have been decided by three points each. Neither team has reached 80 points in the last seven meetings.
Washington State was a four-point winner over Oregon State in Beasley Coliseum in December. It was just the second win for the Cougars in their last 13 games against the Beavers.
Oregon State has won five in a row over Washington State in Corvallis, with an average margin of 16.2 points. The Beavers have averaged 92 points per game the last two times the teams have met in Gill Coliseum.
Washington is 9-4 in their last 13 vs. Oregon State. The Beavers have won three of the last four on their home floor vs. the Huskies. Three of the last six between the teams have needed overtime to decide the outcome. The last six have been decided by an average of 5.5 per game.
UCLA at USC
The Trojans swept the series last season and have taken three of the last four over the Bruins. The last three games between the rivals have been settled by an average of 6.0 points per game, with the five of the last seven being within two possession.
Cal at Stanford
The Bears and Cardinal will play a home-and-home on Thursday and Sunday. Stanford will host the first with Cal returning the favor on Super Bowl Sunday. The rivals have split the eight meetings over the last three seasons.
The road team is 4-2 since the 2017-18 season. Stanford is 5-3 in their last eight trips to Haas Pavilion. The Cardinal have also won five of the last eight meetings in Maples. Three of the last five have been decided by single digits.
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