UCLA Picked To Win Pac-12 Men's Basketball Title
Oct. 28, 2011

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LOS ANGELES - The UCLA men's basketball team has been picked to finish first in the Pac-12 Conference this season, according to a poll of media members who cover Pac-12 men's basketball.

The annual preseason poll was released in conjunction with Pac-12 men's basketball media day, hosted in downtown Los Angeles at L.A. Live. Head coach Ben Howland and senior guard Lazeric Jones represented UCLA at the annual conference event.

"Our team always has high expectations," said Howland, who enters his ninth season as the Bruins' head coach. "The expectations that we put on ourselves matter the most. It's always nice to be picked high, but that doesn't guarantee anything. It's all about where you finish. We've got to go out and prove it, and part of it is being healthy. Hopefully, if we stay healthy and focused on what we are trying to do, it will take care of itself."

In the preseason poll, UCLA tallied 14 first-place votes and narrowly edges out California and Arizona. In addition to Jones, the Bruins return junior forward Reeves Nelson, who led last season's team with 13.9 ppg and 9.1 rpg.

California, paced by senior guard Jorge Gutierrez (14.6 ppg, 4.5 apg) and senior forward Harper Kamp (14.2 ppg, 5.6 rpg) picked up 13 first-place votes and is tabbed for second. Arizona, the reigning regular-season conference champion, pulled in the remaining 11 first-place votes and are picked to finish third.

Washington, the defending Pac-12 Tournament champion, is slotted fourth, followed by Oregon (fifth) and Stanford (sixth). USC, Oregon State, Arizona State, Colorado and Washington State (tied) and Utah round out the conference's remaining 12 teams, respectively.

Media have correctly picked the conference's regular-season champion 12 times in 19 tries. The media were successful with their choice in five of the previous seven times UCLA was slated to capture the league crown.

The 2011-12 season gets underway for the Pac-12 on Monday, Nov. 7, when Arizona hosts Valparaiso in a Coaches vs. Cancer matchup.

UCLA begins its season on Sunday, Nov. 6 with an exhibition game against Cal State San Bernardino in Ontario, Calif. The Bruins' first regular season game is on Friday, Nov. 11, versus Loyola Marymount at the Los Angeles Sports Arena.

2011-12 Pac-12 Men's Basketball Media Poll
1. UCLA (14) - 421
2. California (13) - 405
3. Arizona (11) - 404
4. Washington - 355
5. Oregon - 282
6. Stanford - 255
7. USC - 194
8. Oregon State - 188
9. Arizona State - 148
t-10. Colorado - 119
t-10. Washington State - 119
12. Utah - 74

first place votes in parentheses

UCLA Health Sponsor - Event Information
Friday, Oct 30
vs. Cal State Los ...
Los Angeles, CA
W, 95 - 57
Friday, Nov 13
vs. Monmouth
Los Angeles, CA
L, 81 - 84 (OT)
Sunday, Nov 15
vs. Cal Poly
Los Angeles, CA
W, 88 - 83
Thursday, Nov 19
vs. Pepperdine
Los Angeles, CA
W, 81 - 67
Monday, Nov 23
vs. UNLV
Lahaina, HI
W, 77 - 75
Tuesday, Nov 24
vs. Kansas
Lahaina, HI
L, 73 - 92
vs. Wake Forest
Lahaina, HI
Sunday, Nov 29 - 4:00 PM PST
vs. CSUN
Los Angeles, CA
Thursday, Dec 03 - 6:00 PM PST
vs. Kentucky
Los Angeles, CA
Sunday, Dec 06 - 6:00 PM PST
vs. Long Beach State
Los Angeles, CA
Saturday, Dec 12 - 7:00 PM PST
at Gonzaga
Spokane, WA
Tuesday, Dec 15 - 6:00 PM PST
vs. Louisiana-Lafayette
Los Angeles, CA
Saturday, Dec 19 - 10:00 AM PST
vs. North Carolina
Brooklyn, NY
Tuesday, Dec 22 - 8:00 PM PST
vs. McNeese State
Los Angeles, CA
Friday, Jan 01 - 8:00 PM PST
at Washington
Seattle, WA
Sunday, Jan 03 - 6:30 PM PST
at Washington State
Pullman, WA
Thursday, Jan 07 - 6:00 PM PST
vs. Arizona
Los Angeles, CA
Saturday, Jan 09 - 2:00 PM PST
vs. Arizona State
Los Angeles, CA
Wednesday, Jan 13 - 8:00 PM PST
vs. USC
Los Angeles, CA
Wednesday, Jan 20 - 8:00 PM PST
at Oregon State
Corvallis, OR
Saturday, Jan 23 - 1:00 PM PST
at Oregon
Eugene, OR
Thursday, Jan 28 - 7:00 PM PST
vs. Washington
Los Angeles, CA
Saturday, Jan 30 - 4:00 PM PST
vs. Washington State
Los Angeles, CA
Thursday, Feb 04 - 7:30 PM PST
at USC
Los Angeles, CA
Friday, Feb 12 - 6:00 PM PST
at Arizona
Tucson, AZ
Sunday, Feb 14 - 5:30 PM PST
at Arizona State
Tempe, AZ
Thursday, Feb 18 - 7:00 PM PST
vs. Utah
Los Angeles, CA
Saturday, Feb 20 - 8:00 PM PST
vs. Colorado
Los Angeles, CA