With conference play on the horizon the Kentucky Wildcats might just be the nation’s strongest team. However, there is one team out west that might disagree with that statement.
The Arizona Wildcats could just be the best team in the nation, but playing in the Pac-12, the team doesn’t get the national love Kentucky does.
It’s a shame too, because Arizona look every bit as dominant as the loaded Kentucky squad.
The talk about Kentucky being the most NBA-ready team is overblown as Arizona has at least two first round talents on their team in freshman Stanley Johnson and sophomore Rondae Hollis-Jefferson.
Johnson might be the best first year player in the nation. His 14.7 points per game lead the Arizona Wildcats. The freshman also contributes 6.3 rebounds and 1.7 steals for the nation’s third-best team.
Hollis-Jefferson is having a sensational year himself.
His 11.9 points and 6.5 rebounds per game are an improvement over his 9.1 and 5.7 averages from a year ago. The pair of Johnson and Hollis-Jefferson lead Arizona in both rebounds and points, but that doesn’t mean the rest of the team is slouching around.
Arizona has quite a few impact players on its roster including Junior point guard Gabe York and sophomore Brandon Ashely.
The real test for Arizona will come in conference play where the team faces off against team’s such as Utah, UCLA, Washington and Stanford.
Meanwhile, Kentucky—who slaughtered Pac-12 rival, UCLA, 83-44 on Saturday—play in the SEC, who currently, besides Kentucky, have no top-25 team’s in its conference.
What makes Arizona isn’t it’s record, but it will be the team’s preparation going into March. Arizona will lose some games along the way, but they will be against some very strong competition.
Kentucky might run the gauntlet and finish the season undefeated, but let’s see how they do when the best players on the court aren’t their own.