Lavin: Bruins, Arizona Both Unproven

On Saturday, UCLA will begin Pacific 10 Conference play against No. 6 Arizona at Pauley Pavilion, and Bruin Coach Steve Lavin says he sees similarities between the Bruins and Wildcats.

“We are in the same boat in terms of being young, unproven, untested teams,” he said. “But both teams are also very dangerous. Once February and March roll around, we may be able to raise a few eyebrows by the time the season is over.”

Lavin still considers Stanford and Washington the elite teams of the conference.

“This is the toughest the league has been from one through eight since I’ve been at UCLA,” he said. “We might not have the three elite teams like we have had in the past, but [the Pac-10] is strong from top to bottom.”



Lavin is happy with the nonconference schedule the Bruins have played.

“Our schedule couldn’t have been scripted better,” he said. “Playing teams like Maryland, Kentucky and Oklahoma State are all top-20 games. But we also had four or five games against teams that we had a chance to get a lot of players minutes and gain some confidence.”