Another year, another disappointing finish for the Pac-12, which had to watch its best squads get bounced from the NCAA Tournament with ease while San Diego State — in its own backyard — advanced to the NCAA Tournament championship game.

Here’s one last look back at some of the highlights — and lowlights — of the Pac-12 basketball season …

Nov. 17 Sun Devils leave Wolverines in their dust

We couldn’t understand just how far Michigan would fall this season, but back in mid-November, the Wolverines were still undefeated and ranked No. 20. Arizona State showed no fear, though, building an 18-point halftime lead in a game the Sun Devils never trailed, ultimately handing Michigan the 87-62 loss.

Nov. 18: Buffalos score 2nd straight SEC win

Colorado doomed itself with a poor nonconference schedule in 2021-22, so Tad Boyle hammered home the importance of starting off the year right in 2022-23, and the Buffaloes took it to heart. Well, sort of. After losing at Grambling State, Colorado bounced back with a 12-point win over Tennessee. Then the Buffs lost to UMass, followed by a 28-point win over then-No. 24 Texas A&M. Those 2 SEC wins could not sustain the Buffaloes, who finished 18-17.

Nov. 20: Bruins fall to Baylor for 2nd straight loss

A season that started with such promise was dangerously close to spiraling when UCLA suffered its 2nd straight loss in just its 5th game. But Baylor was pretty darn good, especially on the perimeter, where they held the Bruins to 26.7% outside shooting. UCLA would shake it off, though, winning the next 13 games.

Nov. 22: No. 14 Arizona dominates eventual national runner-up San Diego State in second half

On Monday night after the title game, SDSU’s Matt Bradley said UConn’s tandem of Adama Sanogo and Donovan Clingan reminded him of Arizona’s Azuolas Tubelis and Oumar Ballo. And for good reason: The Wildcats imposing duo combined for 26 points and 16 points in an 87-70 win over the Aztecs. But even better, their screens freed up Kerr Kriisa and Courtney Ramey, who each scored 21.

Dec. 1: Utah shocks No. 4 Arizona at home

The Wildcats followed their big win over San Diego State with a 2-point win over then-No. 10 Creighton. Those 2 wins propelled Arizona into the top 5, but then the Cats ran into the juggernaut that is … Utah?

The Utes scored its biggest win of the year in its conference opener, part of the Pac-12’s early conference weekend. And this was no fluke: Utah slammed the door shut in a 15-point win.

Jan. 6: Bears win basketball Big Game

It may have been the single most surprising result of the Pac-12 campaign when Cal smashed Stanford, 92-70, behind DeJuan Clayton’s 26 points. The Bears’ 2nd straight win, which followed a New Year’s Eve victory over Colorado, would also prove to be Cal’s last of the season.

Jan. 7: Washington State pulls off midday upset at McKale

Arizona’s home court was once no-man’s land for Pac-12 opponents, who rarely stepped into McKale Center and even threatened the Cats. But Wazzu’s Mouhamed Gueye had one of the best single game performances of the season, scoring 24 points, grabbing 14 rebounds, including 6 offensive, and helped hold the Wildcats to 32% shooting and 16% from deep on their own floor. So much for home-court advantage. A week later, Arizona lost again, this time at Oregon.

Jan. 26: Trojans complete 2nd comeback bid against cross-town rivals

On Jan. 5, USC fell behind big against UCLA, going into halftime down 44-26, only to mount a massive comeback that fell just short, 60-58. Three weeks later, the Trojans dug themselves a big hole yet again, trailing at the half, 37-25. But this time, USC turned on the jets for good in the second half, steamrolling the Bruins, 52-27, en route to a 13-point win.

Feb. 11: Wildcats can’t keep up with the Joneses

Stanford’s Spencer Jones was ice cold in the first half against the No. 4 Arizona. Then Jones hit one shot in the second half, and then another. And then 6 more. He went off for 18 points after the break, including a pair of 3-pointers, joining all 4 other Stanford starters in double-figures, including Michael O’Connell, who had 22 points. That was enough to help the Cardinal secure one of their few bright spots of the season in a 88-79 win over the Wildcats.

Feb. 11: Oregon State comes up for air — however briefly

The Beavers had trouble bouncing back throughout the season, suffering 5 separate losing streaks. They were smack in the middle of a bad one — a 3-game slide that included losses to the Pac-12’s best in Arizona State, Arizona and UCLA — when they pulled off a big win over the league’s only other NCAA Tournament team, USC. Oregon State held Trojans star guard Boogie Ellis to just 9 points, half his season average. But the Beavers went on to win just 1 more game the rest of the year.

Feb. 11: Utes bottle up Buffaloes

Led by 17 points each from Branden Carlson and Marco Anthony, Utah improved its record to 17-9 on the season, one late-season surge away from a potential NCAA Tournament berth. Alas, the Utes’ 73-63 win over rival Colorado was their last of the season. Utah closed the season with 6 straight losses.

Feb. 15: Huskies take it to overtime with Ducks, then prevail

It’s almost amazing what Washington did to Will Richardson on Feb. 15. The 2-time all-conference selection played 43 minutes but went 0-for-3 and scored 0 points. He averaged almost 13 for the season. Shutting him down was the primary reason the Huskies were able to fend off the Ducks. It was his missed layup, which followed a layup by UDub’s Jamal Bey with 28 seconds left, that gave Washington the win.

Feb. 19: Ducks drop 3rd straight

Losing to No. 7 UCLA is understandable, if not probable. Falling by 1 point in overtime at Washington, however painful, is forgivable. But dropping a 3rd straight game at lowly Washington State because of 12 turnovers, well, that’s downright depressing. The Ducks’ 3rd straight loss just about closed the book on a March Madness ticket, and Oregon missed out on postseason play for the 2nd consecutive year.

Feb. 25: Cambridge’s heave stuns Cats

It was undoubtedly the play of the year in the Pac-12, and perhaps the best moment in Arizona State’s decades-long rivalry with Arizona. The Sun Devils have won before, but beating the Wildcats…on their own floor … with a 60-foot buzzer-beater? Desmond Cambridge Jr. earned himself free drinks for life in Tempe with his half-court heave. If won win can lift a team into the NCAA Tournament, this one did.

March 4: Down goes Clark

A Pyrrhic victory if there ever was one, UCLA’s regular season-ending 83-72 win over Arizona was supposed to be an exclamation point, but all it did was leave Mick Cronin with questions. Mainly, “Why me?” after the country’s best defender, Jaylen Clark, was lost for the year with an Achilles’ injury.

March 9: Bears fire Fox

It’s fair to say that Mark Fox had to know what was coming after Cal’s worst season in program history, a 3-29 debacle that dropped the Bears to 38-87 in his tenure. Cal made it official on March 9, though, setting the stage for a big Bay Area return.

March 10: Stanford sticks with Haase

Despite a mediocre 112-109 record in 7 years with Jerod Haase at the helm, the Stanford athletic department announced that it was sticking with the embattled coach following another down year. The Cardinal still have not made the NCAA Tournament under Haase. Their last trip came in 2014, their lone appearance under Johnny Dawkins.

March 11: Cats hoist another conference tourney title

In a horrendous shooting display between what were ostensibly two good offenses, it’s not fair to say Arizona and UCLA put on a show in the Pac-12 Tournament title game in Las Vegas. The Sin City crowd witnessed a combined 41-for-112 shooting, as Arizona outlasted the Bruins, 61-59. Courtney Ramey’s 3-pointer with 18 seconds left proved the difference for the Cats.

March 15: A First Four flourish for Sun Devils

In one of the most ruthless First Four matchups of all time, Arizona State burst out of the gate like a rocket against Nevada, using an early 17-0 run to take control in a game that was never in doubt. DJ Horne had a game-high 20 points for the Sun Devils, who led by 27 at the break, won by 25 and scored a season-high 98 points.

March 16: Wildcats fall to 15 seed Princeton

Arizona might never live this one down. Despite holding Princeton to 41% shooting and 16% from deep, the Wildcats let the pesky Tigers hang around and were ultimately dealt one of the most embarrassing losses in program history. The 15th-seeded Tigers held one of the best offensive squads in the country to zero points in the last 4 minutes, 44 seconds of the game. Tommy Lloyd’s dream start was dashed in a second.

March 17: Coles floater sends Sun Devils into long summer

Arizona State did just about everything right in its first round matchup with TCU. The Sun Devils shot 48.1% from the field while holding TCU to 35.5%. They out-shot them from deep, 47.1-34.8%. If only for those pesky turnovers — all 13 of them — which doomed ASU along with JaKobe Coles, who dropped in a floater to push the Horned Frogs past the Sun Devils, 72-70. ASU hasn’t advanced to the 2nd round of the NCAA Tournament game since 2009.

March 17: Too-early Tourney exit for Trojans

For 20 minutes, the Trojans fought Tom Izzo’s Spartans tooth and nail, heading into the locker room tied at 34 and feeling good about their 2nd-half prospects. Then they went ice cold midway through the 2nd half, and the Spartans sprinted right past them. Michigan State built a 15-point 2nd-half lead and advanced to the Round of 32 with a 72-62 win.

March 23: Gonzaga does it again

UCLA and Gonzaga traded daggers in the final 13 seconds of thei Sweet 16 matchup, a yo-yo of emotions that left Bruins’ fans hearts tangled in a knot. After Amari Bailey hit a quick 3-pointer with 13 seconds left, the Bulldogs’ Julian Strawther dropped one from just inside the halfcourt logo with 7 seconds left to end UCLA’s season. The Bruins will forever what could have been if they were healthy — and if they didn’t allow 36 points to Drew Timme.

March 29: The Mad Dog returns

Mark “Mad Dog” Madsen was a local hero, only at Stanford, which he helped lead to the Final Four in 1998. But the Cal Bears were looking to do more than just stick it to their biggest rivals, though. They poached Madsen from Utah Valley University, where he went 70-51 in 4 years. He led the Wolverines to a 28-9 record this year.