Signs of a Pac-12 revival

Nick Johnson and the Arizona Wildcats are the clear favorite to win the Pac-12 crown. Casey Sapio/USA TODAY Sports

The Pac-12 put five teams into the 2013 NCAA tournament, the league's best showing since six teams represented the then-Pac-10 in 2009. The conference figures to receive more or less the same number of bids in 2014, meaning the days of "one-bid league" jokes every February are a thing of the past. That's a welcome and long-awaited development for hoops fans on the West Coast.

Here's how I see the top of the resurgent Pac-12 sorting itself out in 2013-14. For busy readers in a hurry, I'll summarize: Arizona is tops, and then there's a second tier of very good teams.