Arizona crashes out of NCAA Tournament vs Clemson, ending Pac-12 hopes of a Final Four

The Arizona Wildcats were the best team in the Pac-12 Conference this season. They won the regular-season league championship in the conference’s final year. They were a No. 2 seed at the NCAA Tournament. They reached the Sweet 16 and played an opponent seeded four lines lower. Yet, the Wildcats have made a habit out of losing NCAA March Madness games as a much higher seed. They couldn’t break that habit in a loss on Thursday to the No. 6 seed Clemson Tigers.

Arizona fumbled the bag again in March, ending the Pac-12’s hopes of sending a team to the Men’s Final Four in its final basketball season. Oregon, Colorado and Washington State all reached the second round but were eliminated, leaving Arizona as the Pac’s only hope. That hope was extinguished against Clemson, and it happened in a very familiar way.

Arizona struggled this season whenever Caleb Love struggled. Love was 5 of 18 from the field, 0 for 9 from 3-point range. He took way too many threes when Arizona was having success getting to the free throw line. Love shot Arizona out of the game. Teammate Kylan Boswell also struggled, going 1 of 5 on 3-pointers. Arizona was too reliant on one or two players. The Wildcats also played terrible defense in the final two minutes, getting carved up by Clemson cuts to the basket with no one being there to protect the rim.

It’s up to women’s basketball to deliver a Final Four appearance (maybe more) for the Pac-12 in its final act before death.

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Story originally appeared on Trojans Wire