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PAC 10 Tournament Preview
Odds - Predictions
The Pacific 10 Conference Tournament is wide open. I mean it; itís very wide open. If the conference was a pair of pants it would need a very large belt. Jokes aside, the PAC 10 is weak this year. The main powers of the conference are California, Arizona State, and Washington. California won the leagueís regular season title even though it lost 5 games in conference. That is the most losses for any regular season champ of a power conference. To put it plain and simple; they can be had. This rings true for every team in the PAC 10. That means this will be a fun one to watch and wager on. Letís look at the contenders.
California Golden Bears - Odds 1.5/1 - With a record of (21-9, 13-5), the Golden Bears are far from invincible. Their only non conference win worth mentioning came against Murray State. Although the Racers finished the year 30-4, that is hardly a marquee win. In conference play Cal split with Washington and swept Arizona State. The Bears are led by senior G Jerome Randle who stands just 5í 10Ē. Donít let his height fool you. The seasoned vet scores 18.5 PPG while striking from 40.5% from three point range. He had 33 points in a win over Washington. Patrick Christopher, Theo Robertson, and Jamal Boykin are all big contributors for this team. They combine for 43.1 PPG and 16.8 RPG. This squad wonít sneak up on anyone, but they certainly arenít assured victory in the PAC 10 Tournament.
Arizona State Sun Devils - Odds 3.5/1 - Although they finished second in the PAC 10 standings, this looks like a team to avoid. They finished the year with a record of 21-9 overall and 12-6 in conference. They donít have a good out of conference win. In their final three games they barely beat lousy teams in USC and UCLA, and got crushed by California. I just donít see them having an impact in this thing. If they do it will be on the back of G Ty Abbot. He steps up in big situations as he proved with 29 points in a win over Arizona.
Washington Huskies - Odds 2/1 - This team has come on very strong at the end of the year. The Huskies ended the season with three straight road victories to improve their record to 21-9 overall and 12-6 in conference. They have a solid out of conference win over Texas A&M. They split games with the top dog in this league (California). Senior Quincy Pondexter leads the team with 20.3 PPG and 7.9 RPG. He had a season high 34 in a win over Arizona. Sophomore Isaiah Thomas is just as pivotal with 17.1 PPG, 4.3 RPG, and 2.9 RPG. He had 22 points in a road win over Arizona. If these two players are able to get and stay hot then the Huskies will run away with the PAC 10 Tournament.
Arizona Wildcats - Odds 8/1 - Itís highly unlikely this team will make a run, but anything is possible. They own a win over California, and they ended the year on a three game streak. The Wildcats played a very strong Wisconsin team close early in the year. Coach Sean Miller knows how to win conference tournaments, but his team is young and inexperienced. If they get hot then perhaps they will cause madness in March during this PAC 10 Tournament.
The Washington Huskies are clearly the play to win the PAC 10 Tournament. They have ended the year on a roll, and they have two stellar players in Pondexter and Thomas. The value will be strong. California is a risky bet despite having won the conference. They are too inconsistent. The same can be said for Arizona State. This should be a good tourney to look for some live dogs in individual games. Good Luck - Enjoy!