ARIZONA BASKETBALL

Pac-12 analyst Don MacLean: Utah is better than the Arizona Wildcats right now

Jan 16, 2015, 8:01 PM | Updated: 8:44 pm

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LISTEN: Don MacLean, Pac-12 Networks basketball analyst

The expert consensus coming into the 2014-15 season seemed to be that the Arizona Wildcats would coast to their second consecutive Pac-12 championship.

That consensus no longer exists, thanks to the emergence of the Utah Utes and the Wildcats’ recent struggles that includes two losses in their last five games.

In fact, Pac-12 Networks analyst Don MacLean said No. 8 Utah (14-2, 4-0 Pac-12), which is a game ahead of No. 10 Arizona (15-2, 3-1) in the conference standings heading into Saturday’s showdown in Tucson, is currently playing at a higher level.

“They’re going to challenge them (in the Pac-12), for sure, and I would say right now, Utah is better than Arizona,” MacLean told Doug and Wolf on Arizona Sports 98.7 FM Friday.

“That being said, I think Arizona wins that game tomorrow just because of the environment.”

UA is 7-0 against Utah since the Utes joined the Pac-12. MacLean likes UA to improve that mark to 8-0 this weekend because of Utah’s struggles on the road dating back to last season, and the Wildcats’ significant home-court advantage at McKale Center, where they have a 31-game winning streak.

But at a neutral site, MacLean would give Utah the edge.

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