The start of the college basketball season is just around the corner. The Bruins open up next Friday, October 31 at Pauley (full schedule at uclabruins.com) with an exhibition game vs. Azusa Pacific (no coverage besides radio announced yet...will Pauley will be as quiet as a graveyard on Halloween?). Jaylen Brown and Carlton Bragg, two five-star recruits, are scheduled to make their official visits to UCLA that day.
Of course, one of the main events in the run-up to the season is the annual PAC-12 Media Day (check it out online here).
Here's the schedule (Larry Scott @ 9:30).
|Coach||On Pac-12 Networks||On Pac-12.com live stream|
|Arizona's Sean Miller||10:10 a.m.||12 p.m.|
|Arizona State's Herb Sendek||11:30 a.m.||11:10 a.m.|
|California's Cuonzo Martin||11:20 a.m.||10:50 a.m.|
|Colorado's Tad Boyle||10:40 a.m.||11:30 a.m.|
|Oregon's Dana Altman||10:30 a.m.||11:40 a.m.|
|Oregon State's Wayne Tinkle||12:15 p.m.||10:20 a.m.|
|Stanford's Johnny Dawkins||11 a.m.||11:20 a.m.|
|UCLA's Steve Alford||10:20 a.m.||11:50 a.m.|
|USC's Andy Enfield||12:45 p.m.||10 a.m.|
|Utah's Larry Krystkowiak||11:50 a.m.||10:40 a.m.|
|Washington's Lorenzo Romar||12 p.m.||10:30 a.m.|
|Washington State's Ernie Kent||12:25 p.m.||10:10 a.m.|
UCLA will be represented by its coach, Steve Alford, and senior guard Norman Powell who we are counting on to have a break out year. Usually, nothing gets said at this event. However, the media poll (used to be a coaches poll) is interesting. Everyone expects Arizona to come out on top, but the battle this season will be for second place. Oh, and Bill Walton will be a commentator for the network this season.
The media expectations for the Bruins are low this year. They are ranked #33 in this season's first USA Today rankings (based on the "others receiving votes" section). Arizona came in at #2, Stanford #27 and Utah #30. CBS Sports had the Bruins at #6 in the PAC-12 (read my preview coverage here).
The PAC-12, as weak as it's been, will be its lowest point in four years. Some say Stanford will finish second, others say Colorado, Utah or the Bruins. Stanford lost Powell and Heustis but brings in a strong freshman class (click on this link for recruiting class rankings). Colorado lost Dinwiddie, but brings back the entire post-Dinwiddie injury starting lineup with no notable newcomers. Utah brings back the entire starting lineup that beat the Bruins in a close game last season in Utah (we won handily at Pauley) plus adds one-time Bruin target four-star freshman Brekkot Chapman.
I expect the media to rank the Bruins third (stay tuned for my UCLA and PAC-12 previews). Let's see if I'm right. Here's your open thread.
UPDATE 8AM: Here is the media poll (its not a coaches poll so I maintain my skepticism). The order is 1. Arizona, 2. Utah, 3. Colorado, 4. UCLA, 5. Stanford. Utah and Colorado were separated by one vote -- UCLA was not particularly close. We'll have a recap tomorrow and BN's preview next week.