The Arizona Wildcats’ magic number to clinch the regular-season Pac-12 title remains at 3 after Oregon’s dramatic comeback 68-65 victory over California on Wednesday night in Berkeley, Calif.
Oregon, which trailed by as many as 16 points in the second half, improved to 14-2 in the conference, one down in the loss column to Arizona, which is 14-1 heading into a crucial weekend of games against USC (Thursday) and UCLA (Saturday) at McKale Center.
Arizona is still in control of its own destiny. If the Wildcats beat the Trojans and Bruins and then cap the regular season with a win at ASU next week, they will be the regular season champions at 17-1.
USC (21-6 overall and 8-6 in the Pac-12) is hungry for an NCAA tournament berth and UCLA is looking to avenge last month’s loss to Arizona at Pauley Pavilion. The Bruins (24-3, 11-3) have a five-game winning streak going into the game Thursday night at ASU.
The Wildcats, Bruins and Ducks remain in the Pac-12 title hunt and No. 1 seed in the conference tournament in two weeks. All the other teams are eliminated from the regular-season title race.
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ALLSPORTSTUCSON.com publisher, writer and editor Javier Morales is a former Arizona Press Club award winner. He is a former Arizona Daily Star beat reporter for the Arizona basketball team, including when the Wildcats won the 1996-97 NCAA title. He has also written articles for CollegeAD.com, Bleacher Report, Lindy’s Sports, TucsonCitizen.com, The Arizona Republic, Sporting News and Baseball America, among many other publications. He has also authored the book “The Highest Form of Living”, which is available at Amazon.