Pac-12

A Very Early College Basketball Top 25 for 2014-15

Arizona, Sean Miller gearing up for another shot at the Final Four
A Very Early College Basketball Top 25 for 2014-15

The 2014 national champion has been crowned, so now it's time to take a quick look ahead at next season.

Consider this a quick snapshot of the 2014-15 season. A handful of developments still need to happen before there’s a clearer picture of the season ahead.

McDonald’s All-American Myles Turner has yet to commit, and he’s down to a handful of power players — Kansas, Texas, Oklahoma State, Ohio State, SMU and Duke.

Sweet 16 Preview and Picks: Arizona Wildcats vs. San Diego State Aztecs

Arizona tries to sweep San Diego State in rematch from November
Sweet 16 Preview and Picks: Arizona Wildcats vs. San Diego State Aztecs

No one would doubt the coaching credentials for Sean Miller and Steve Fisher. Nor would anyone discount Arizona and San Diego State as two of the nation’s top programs right now West of the Rocky Mountains.

Still, a bit of legitimacy is on the line.

Sweet 16 Preview and Picks: Florida Gators vs. UCLA Bruins

Florida's defense vs. UCLA's offense sets up exciting regional matchup
Sweet 16 Preview and Picks: Florida Gators vs. UCLA Bruins

Florida and UCLA are as familiar as two teams from opposite ends as the the country can be.

The Gators and Bruins will meet in the NCAA Tournament for the fourth time since 2006, each at a different stage. Florida defeated UCLA in the 2006 title game, the 2007 Final Four and the 2011 round of 32. Moreover, Florida and UCLA could have met again in the round of 32 had the Bruins defeated Minnesota in Ben Howland’s last game.

This Sweet 16 matchup will be different, perhaps, from the other three, primarily due to a coaching change on the other bench.

Sweet 16 Preview and Picks: Stanford Cardinal vs. Dayton Flyers

One way or another, a double-digit seed will be in the Elite Eight
Sweet 16 Preview and Picks: Stanford Cardinal vs. Dayton Flyers

The first game of the Sweet 16 is a classic example of why bubble talk is so captivating.

All a team has to do is get into the field and anything can happen.

In early March, neither Stanford nor Dayton were assured of spots in the field. Only a late push by both landed these teams in the NCAA Tournament, and now they’ve taken out Kansas, Syracuse, Ohio State and New Mexico.

College Basketball's Worst Coaching Tenures since 1984-85

Tony Barbee's rough tenure ended earlier this season
<p> College Basketball's Worst Coaching Tenures since 1984-85</p>

Sometimes a coach inherits a bad team or steps into a program where the university simply does not invest in basketball. In some cases, through recruiting, Xs and Os and inspiration, that coach can turn a bad team into a good or even great one.

The guys on this list are not those coaches. Here are the 20 worst coaching tenures in the six major conference since the NCAA Tournament expanded in 1985.

Bubble Teams with the Most to Gain in the Conference Tournaments

The Bubble Watch resumes as major conference tourneys begin
Bubble Teams with the Most to Gain in the Conference Tournaments

The NCAA selection committee likes to remind us that a team’s entire body of work is being judged on Selection Sunday.

Why, then, does it seem that last impressions matter every season?

The conference tournaments give every team another chance to prove why they’re worthy of an NCAA Tournament slot or show why they were on the bubble in the first place.

Fatal flaws that could sink 13 title contenders in the NCAA Tournament

How national championship bids could be derailed for these top teams
Fatal flaws that could sink 13 title contenders in the NCAA Tournament

First off, congratulations to all the teams on the following list. Each of the 13 teams on the list below looks like a team that could win the national title.

Now that we're finished with the formalities, Athlon Sports is going pick out each team’s biggest weakness.

No team in college basketball is perfect, not even the one sitting in Kansas with the perfect record. In a one-game elimination scenario just one opponent needs to exploit one soft spot to end a top team’s national championship bid.

Oregon's Mike Moser earns Athlon Sports Player of the Week honors

Arizona's Aaron Gordon picks up National Freshman of the Week honors
Oregon's Mike Moser earns Athlon Sports Player of the Week honors

When Oregon’s season hit a critical point, the Ducks leaned on a fifth-year senior who has been around the block.

Mike Moser, a veteran who has played for UCLA and UNLV, kept the Ducks in NCAA Tournament contention with back-to-back double doubles during the weekend.

Moser had 12 points and 20 rebounds in an 87-83 overtime win over UCLA on Thursday and followed that with 20 points and 12 rebounds in a 78-63 win over USC to earn Athlon Sports National Player of the Week honors.

Profiling Oregon: NCAA Tournament Bubble Watch

Ducks will have opportunities to play their way into the bracket
Profiling Oregon: NCAA Tournament Bubble Watch

Oregon began the season as one of the nation’s surprise teams. Dana Altman’s mishmash of transfers, including players from Houston, UNLV, Detroit and a few junior colleges.

After a 13-0 start, Oregon lost five in a row once the Ducks entered Pac-12 play. Oregon has become more consistent in February, but the Ducks haven’t been able to return to their early season form. With three games in the last four against NCAA-caliber competition, Oregon will look to grab a signature win in time for Selection Sunday.
 

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