Yesterday was deadline day to cast ballots for this season's Pac-10 men's basketball media poll. The Huskies got my top vote, and I will be shocked if they aren't on top when the overall vote is announced Thursday at Media Day in Los Angeles.
Here's my list:1. WashingtonTalented, veteran, versatile, deep, athletic and well-coached. They are far better prepared to survive the considerable loss of Quincy Pondexter than previous teams were to compensate for the losses of Brandon Roy or Jon Brockman. This could be the year they break beyond the Sweet 16.2. ArizonaRemember the days of the great UW-UA battles. They seem to be back, with experience giving the edge to the Huskies. The loss of Nic Wise will hurt, but that should be overcome as last year's five talented freshmen become this year's five talented sophomores.3. Arizona StateThree seniors return ... as does Pac-10 coach of the year Herb Sendek, who clearly has the ability to elevate talent.4. UCLAThis appears to be rebuilding, not reloading, for the Bruins. And there are no seniors around to help.5. Washington StateAll five starters are back ... but from a team that went 6-12 in conference. Improvement, but probably no major breakthrough unless they become more serious about defense.6. USCNot much experience, and still a program in transition. However, with Kevin O'Neill around I think this mystery team could surprise.7.StanfordFour starters returning ... but they're back from a mediocre team that lost its best player. And there's not much depth.8. CaliforniaA long drop back seems unavoidable with four seniors departed. But with Mike Montgomery on campus, it's likely to be short-term.9. Oregon StateMaybe a step back in Craig Robinson's rebuilding as the team may be built around a second-team all-conference guard.10.OregonA distracting off-season of comings and goings, most notably the departure of Ernie Kent and the coming of Dana Altman. More transition ahead, as the Duck say goodbye to Mac Court and hello to Matthew Knight Arena.