Cal Basketball: Pac-12 Picks -- Can Huskies Stay Perfect in Conference?

Washington's aggressive defense has been a key to its 10-0 start in the Pac-12.Photo by Casey Sapio, USA Today

Washington puts its 10-0 Pac-12 record on the line against hot-and-cold Arizona State

Those pesky road teams have wreaked havoc on our Pac-12 picks so far this week.

Visiting teams went 5-1 on Wednesday and Thursday, when even Pauley Pavilion and the McKale Center couldn’t save the home team.

Only Oregon among home teams survived the first part of the weekend, and the Ducks played winless Cal.

The results of the past couple days also have helped Washington take a huge step closer to clinching the Pac-12 title. The Huskies (10-0) own a four-game lead over four teams tied at 6-4 and four more at 5-5.

We will do better with our picks this weekend. Can Pac-12 home teams hold up their end of the bargain?

This week: Jake 2-4, Jeff 1-5

Season: Jeff 45-14, Jake 41-18

Saturday

Utah (12-10, 6-4) at UCLA (12-11, 5-5), 2 p.m. (Fox)

Jake: The Bruins had an embarrassing home performance against Colorado, and Utah has road wins over USC, Arizona State, Stanford and Cal. The Bruins have the talent, but the Utes have the coaching. Pick: Utah

Jeff: Steve Alford is probably sitting at home thinking, `I could have done this.’ Pick: Utah

Cal (5-17, 0-10) at Oregon State (14-8, 6-4), 2:30 p.m. (Pac-12 Networks)

Jake: The Beavers’ 23-point home loss to Stanford indicates they can’t win on talent alone. They will execute better against the Bears, who have virtually clinched last place. Pick: Oregon State

Jeff: The Bears’ most recent victory in Pac-12 play came against the Beavers. Of course, that was 371 days ago. Pick: Oregon State

Washington State (9-14, 2-8) at Arizona (14-9, 5-5), 4:30 p.m. (Pac-12 Networks)

Jake: The Wildcats are sick of losing, especially at home, and the Cougars cannot duplicate their unexpected Thursday performance. With Arizona’s Chase Jeter back playing starter’s minutes . . . Pick: Arizona

Jeff: The best player on the floor at McKale Center on Saturday will be Washington State’s Robert Franks (22.1 PPG, 7.7 RPG). But will the Wildcats actually lose a fifth straight Pac-12 game? Pick: Arizona

Washington (19-4, 10-0) at Arizona State (15-7, 6-4), 7 p.m. (ESPN)

Jake: Arizona State’s 21-point home loss to Washington State is simply inexplicable, which describes the Sun Devils in general. You can never tell what ASU will do. With that in mind . . . Pick: Arizona State

Jeff: The Huskies are off to their best conference start since going 14-0 in 1952-53. They handled Arizona despite Noah Dickerson’s sprained ankle and Matisse Thybulle’s flu bug. The erratic Sun Devils aren't going to spoil that. Pick: Washington

Colorado (13-9, 4-6) at USC (13-10, 6-4), 7 p.m. (ESPNU)

Jake: The Buffaloes looked like a well-coached team Wednesday; USC did not. The talent differential will surface this time, and Colorado won’t make 13 three-pointers like it did against UCLA. Pick: USC

Jeff: The Buffaloes, with double-digit wins over Oregon and UCLA in their past two outings, seem to be getting it together. USC has lost two of its past three. This is a tough one . . . Pick: USC

Sunday

Stanford (12-10, 5-5) at Oregon (14-9, 5-5), 5 p.m. (ESPN2)

Jake: The Cardinal has won three straight, but it’s unclear whether Stanford point guard Daejon Davis (head) will play Sunday. We’re betting Oregon’s Payton Pritchard will stay hot from the perimeter. Pick: Oregon

Jeff: The Cardinal has an extra day to let Davis get healthy. He could be fine or he may not play. That’s a huge factor. Pick: Oregon

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