Pac-12 record six teams in the final AP women’s basketball poll
SAN FRANCISCO - For the first time ever, six Pac-12 teams are ranked in the final Associated Press poll, which was announced on Tuesday. It is also the most for any Conference in the country. Half the Pac-12 teams ranked appeared in the top-10 marking, also a first for the Conference, with OREGON leading the way at No. 2.
The Ducks (31-2, 17-1) earned their highest-ever final ranking after winning the regular-season title and the Pac-12 Tournament. Led by Pac-12 Player of the Year Sabrina Ionescu and Pac-12 Coach of the Year Kelly Graves, Oregon was projected to be a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament.
Finishing in the top-three in the Pac-12 standings every year since the 1987-88 campaign, STANFORD (27-6, 14-4) is seventh in the final poll, placing in the top-10 for the second-straight year. The Cardinal tied for second in the conference in the regular season, advancing to the Pac-12 Tournament championship game.
UCLA garnered its third top-10 final ranking in five years. The Bruins (26-5, 14-4) tied for second in the Pac-12 regular season, their highest finish since the 2010-11 campaign. UCLA was the last-remaining undefeated team in the country, opening the season with a program-record 16-0 record.
ARIZONA (24-7, 12-6) is also coming off a historic season ending with the Wildcats ranked at No. 12, making its first appearance in the final polling since 2003 and its highest final ranking since 1998. Arizona finished fourth in the Pac-12 standings, for its best finish sine 2010-11. The Wildcats were projected to make their first NCAA Tournament appearance since 2005.
Ranked No. 14, OREGON STATE (23-9, 10-8) is in the final AP poll for the sixth year in a row, appearing in the top-15 in each of those years. The Beavers started the season with a program-record 15-game winning streak, also recording their best start to a season at 15-0 and won the preseason WNIT.
Rounding out the Pac-12 teams in the polling is ARIZONA STATE (20-11, 10-8) at No. 25. The Sun Devils tied with Oregon State for fifth place in the Pac-12. ASU recorded the most stunning weekend in NCAA Division I history, defeating No. 2 Oregon and then-No. 3 Oregon State in back-to-back games on Jan. 10 and Jan. 12, respectively, to become the first unranked team to topple AP top-five opponents in consecutive games. ASU limited both teams to more than 20 points below their season scoring average.
In the NCAA’s final top-16 reveal on March 2, the Pac-12 was projected to have five top-16 seeds, which would have given them the opportunity to host first- and second-round games. It was the most teams in the reveal for any league in the country.