1. Arizona State Sun Devils (9-3) LW: 1
In one week’s time, Arizona State experienced arguably its best win and worst loss of the season.
The Sun Devils beat Kansas for a second year in a row, this time unseating the No. 1 Jayhawks at home. An 80-76 victory marked ASU’s return to the national spotlight, receiving attention similar to that of its 12-0 start in 2017 while doubling as a beacon of hope in an otherwise underwhelming Pac-12.
But before it could solidify a spot in the Associated Press Top 25 poll for a third consecutive week, ASU took two steps back for its giant leap forward, falling to Princeton at home.
A game ASU could have won to reach double-digit wins before the calendar turned instead erased the memory of storming the court at Wells Fargo Arena, replaced by the sour taste of a Quadrant IV loss.
The loss shuffled the Sun Devils out of the rankings, albeit they received the next most votes, but the Pac-12 is without a ranked team for the first time since the 2011-12 season.
Some might call the loss humbling, others embarrassing though it’d best be described as a reality check. Losses to Vanderbilt and Nevada are nothing to scoff at but the Sun Devils have some work to do if they are in fact the alpha dogs of the Pac-12.
They begin conference play at home against Utah on Thursday. The Utes have just two player shooting above 50 percent from the floor and sit at 6-6 in the cellar of the conference standings.