By pretty much any measure, the Pac-12 is a sham, and any number of people have written about how poor the league is this year and how few tournament bids it should get.
With that as backdrop, this may seem like piling on. But while it’s easy to point to the league’s mediocre 80-52 non-conference record and losses to teams like
In short, they do.
Here are 10 stats that confirm everything you've heard about the Pac-12's ineptitude is true. (Note: I would have given 12 so it averages out to one for each team, but quite frankly, they don’t deserve it.)
96.3 – Percent of USC’s minutes that Maurice Jones has played. The Trojans are woefully undermanned, which has forced the 5-foot-7 Jones to sit out practices in order to be able to log 40 minutes virtually every night. He’s also the only player on the team with an assist rate over 15.0. USC is just 5-7 so far, and not so coincidentally they ranked 139th or lower in each of the four factors on offense.
83.3 – Arizona freshman Josiah Turner’s ORtg. While it’s not uncommon for freshmen to struggle (which Turner has both on and off the floor), the fact that he has the highest usage rate on the team isn’t particularly reassuring. That said, if he can start to figure things out, the Wildcats have the talent to win the league.
36.2 – Washington freshman Tony Wroten’s usage rate, which ranks second in the country. It’s great that the freshman isn’t timid, but perhaps discretion is the better part of valor given his 92.6 ORtg. The quandary for Wroten is that he excels at getting to the line (7.9 fouls drawn per 40 minutes), but he stinks when he gets there (51.4 FT%). While
7.7 – Fouls committed per 40 minutes by Josh Smith. The UCLA big man has enough trouble logging extended minutes due to his lack of conditioning, but he also can’t stay out of foul trouble. He ranks eighth in OReb%, 20th in fouls drawn per 40 minutes, and 43rd in block percentage, so the talent is there. Unfortunately he's wasting it.
6 – The number of Pac-12 teams whose defensive turnover rates are among the 50 worst in the nation.
4 – Number of players on Stanford with turnover rates over 25, including two of their top three assist men. So while the Cardinal may seem to be essentially the only pleasant surprise in the league, I’m not sure how sustainable their success is. Actually, after that stat about how poor half the league is at forcing turnovers, maybe it doesn't matter.
1.17 – Points per possession scored by
1 – Wins against teams in Pomeroy’s Top 50. The lone victory came when
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