Power rankings: Pac-12, WCC, MWC men's basketball, Version 2

Published: Wednesday, Dec. 4 2013 11:42 a.m. MST

Of the 31 conferences in Division I college basketball, the teams in Mountain West Conference have played the combined 10th-toughest non-conference schedule, while the Pac-12 Conference has played the 13th-toughest and the West Coast Conference the 25th, according to RealTimeRPI.com.

BYU has played the fourth most difficult schedule in the country, which explains why the Cougars have the highest RPI (No. 9) right now of any team in these three conferences.

The Utah State Aggies have played the 68th most difficult schedule, which is not bad, while the University of Utah has played the 348th most difficult schedule.

C'mon Utes.

Generally speaking, it would be great to see higher quality non-conference games involving teams from these conferences.

Among the teams from these conferences, Arizona (Pac-12) has the only two wins against teams currently ranked in the Associated Press Top 25. The Wildcats have clearly established themselves as the No. 1 team in these power rankings. After that, there is not a whole lot separating the top 10 teams. Any team in the top 10 would likely be favored on its home court against any other team in the top 10.

There are some good games coming up involving a lot of these teams, so we’ll find out more soon enough.

Here is the second edition of the Pac-12/MWC/WCC power rankings (games through Dec. 3):

Nate Gagon is a published sports, music, and creative writer. He is also a wholehearted father, grateful husband and ardent student of life. He shoots roughly 94 percent from the line and can be reached at: nategagon@hotmail.com or @nategagon.

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Salt Lake City, UT

It is kind of weird to put the Utes in the top 15 teams from these conferences when they just lost to the only real team they have played so far this year. But I guess it is fine, they are better than they have been for the past few seasons (which isn't saying much). I think the rest of the list is fine (I don't think a perfect list of this kind is possible at this point in the season). I hope BYU can beat number 2 from this list. I think having them at number 5 is a perfect place to put them at this point.

Gone fishin
PAC Country, WA

The top 14 sound about right. Utah at #15 is about as off base as you can get.
Playing the 348th easiest schedule in the country should not garner any votes at all. I they were throwing Utah a bone.

Gone fishin
PAC Country, WA

BYU is smart in scheduling tough OOC opponents. Can't say the same for the utes.

Too bad that the Utah game will lower their SOS ranking by a few notches.

Taylorsville, UT

@Gone fishin and @Samwise

You are probably right about the Utes, but who would you have put in at #15 instead? USC? Wyoming? Colorado St? Oregon St for its road win over Maryland? The Utes actually looked pretty impressive against Boise last night, so I decided to slide them in due to a lack of any obvious better choices.

Bountiful, UT

Utah will end up with a stronger strength of schedule ranking at the end of the year than BYU. BYU has to schedule tough out of conference because the WCC is so bad after Gonzaga and St. Mary's.

Jealous U
Alpine, UT


"Utah will end up with a stronger strength of schedule ranking at the end of the year than BYU."

Possibly, but with a much worse RPI because the Utes will have precious few wins against the decent teams on their schedule.

Boise State is just the first example of what will happen to the Utes as soon as they begin playing decent teams - lots of morale victories, just like football.


Funny that the "validity" of these subjective rankings focuses solely around Utah to so many. When Utah is rated lower, they are great. When Utah is rated higher, it is "as off base as you can get."

Salt Lake City, UT


"Utah will end up with a stronger strength of schedule ranking at the end of the year than BYU."

Yeah, your conference big brothers can probably beat your BYU big brother, and BYU's sister can probably beat you.

salt lake city, UT

Utah's strategy of playing a weak schedule is proven for programs rebuilding. Makes no sense to have a bunch of underclassman whipped by more talented, experienced teams. You have to learn how to walk before you run. They're still a year away from being a NCAA post season team but heading in the right direction. BYU is a proven regular season monster and a one and done tournament team.

Mormon Ute
Kaysville, UT

I have to make a small correction to the BYU homer who wrote this article. The Utes play Fresno State tommorrow so that gives us one more non-conference game against a team you've actually heard of.

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