Here’s a look at what’s ahead as teams prepare to begin the second round of the Pac-12 schedule, with each team’s conference record in parenthesis:
1. ARIZONA (8-1)
The Wildcats looked invincible until coming to the Bay Area last weekend, when they squeaked by Stanford 60-57 and lost at Cal 60-58.
Home games remaining: Oregon, Oregon State, Cal, Stanford.
Road games remaining: Arizona State, Utah, Colorado, Oregon, Oregon State.
Miss: UCLA, USC, Washington, Washington State.
Analysis: Arizona takes a two-game lead into the second go-round, but starting forward Brandon Ashley (foot) is done for the season and the Cats have shown limited depth so far. Plus, there isn’t an automatic road win left on their schedule. They’ll hold onto the regular-season title, but it won’t be a waltz.
2 tie. CAL (6-3)
The Bears have beaten the No. 1 team in the country and lost to the last-place team in the conference. Exactly where they belong on that vast continuum remains to be seen.
Home: Stanford, UCLA, USC, Utah, Colorado.
Road: Washington State, Washington, Arizona, Arizona State.
Miss: Oregon, Oregon State.
Analysis: An important three-game stretch begins Wednesday with a home rematch against Stanford, then a trip to Washington. If the Bears want to set up a big game at Arizona on Feb. 26, they need to win these next three.
2 tie. UCLA (6-3)
Of all the teams I have seen in person against either Cal or Stanford, UCLA was most impressive, in both matchups. They also played Arizona close, then lost at Utah at Oregon State.
Home: Colorado, Utah, Oregon, Oregon State.
Road: USC, Cal, Stanford, Washington, Washington State.
Miss: Arizona, Arizona State.
Analysis: A loss at Oregon State on Super Bowl Sunday is bothersome because the Bruins had been playing at a high level. But that’s the road in any conference. UCLA doesn’t play again vs. Arizona, but its trip to the Bay Area in two weeks will be intriguing.