Pac-12: Preseason Player Of The Year Watch

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Mar 27, 2014; Memphis, TN, USA; Stanford Cardinal guard Chasson Randle (5) reacts against the Dayton Flyers during the second half in the semifinals of the south regional of the 2014 NCAA Mens Basketball Championship tournament at FedExForum. Mandatory Credit: Nelson Chenault-USA TODAY Sports

It’s never too early to talk Pac-12 basketball.

While my preseason Pac-12 power rankings are coming Friday, I’d like to get the conversation started by taking a look at the preseason favorites to win Pac-12 Player of the Year.

Right now, it’s a four-horse race for Pac-12 Player of the Year. Although there’s plenty of other really good players, like Colorado’s Askia Booker and Josh Scott, Washington’s Nigel Williams-Goss, and others, they are a notch below the four preseason favorites I’ve chosen.

There are four distinct favorites to win the award.

I’ve also considered a handful of incoming freshman who could have transcendent seasons in the Pac-12, like Arizona’s Stanley Johnson or UCLA’s Isaac Hamilton, who is actually a sophomore but sat out all last season because of an eligibility issue. Each are great players and could be considered dark horse candidates to win the award.

The problem is I’ve yet to see them play a college basketball game. There’s no way I could say with any level of certainty that Johnson or Hamilton are in the hunt to win the award.

Plus, of the last 10 winners of the Pac-12 Player of the Year award, only UCLA’s Kevin Love won the award as a freshman. I don’t think there’s a freshman in the Pac-12 as good was Kevin Love at UCLA, but I’ll have to adjust the Pac-12 Player of the Year rankings accordingly as the season goes along.

Here are my four preseason favorites to win the Pac-12’s most prestigious award,  Player of the Year:

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