Sixth-ranked Arizona not only enters the Pac-12 Tournament as the clear favorite, coach Tommy Lloyd has been unbeaten in this event at T-Mobile Arena.

The Wildcats won the conference tournament the past two seasons, going through UCLA each time.

The Bruins were on Arizona’s level, but there is no real equivalent to the Wildcats (24-7) this season with the conference tournament opening Wednesday. No. 22 Washington State (23-8) is the only other ranked Pac-12 team.

Were thankful,” Lloyd said. The guys had a great regular season. To win a Pac-12 regular-season conference championship is not something to be taken lightly.

Arizona will try to become the first team to win three Pac-12 Tournaments in a row since the Wildcats won four straight in 1988-90 and 2002. There were no conference tournaments between 1991-2001.

The Pac-12 announced Tuesday that Arizona senior guard Caleb Love was named Pac-12 Player of the Year after he averaged 18.7 points. Against Pac-12 teams, he averaged 20 points with a conference-high 59 3-pointers.

Lloyd has a couple of motivational tricks at his disposal. Arizona’s last visit to this arena resulted in a 96-95 double-overtime loss to then No. 14 Florida Atlantic two days before Christmas. That loss gave Lloyd a 9-1 record in Las Vegas. The Owls, coming off a Final Four appearance, have since dropped out of the rankings.

Also, the Wildcats enter the league tournament the last one for the Pac-12 before 10 teams leave for other conferences after falling 78-65 to USC on Saturday, ending a stretch in which they had won 10 of 11 games.

We knew we were given a gift by SC and we can really learn from this, Lloyd said. “That’s going to be our focus.

Arizona opens its tournament play in Thursday’s quarterfinals against the winner of Wednesday’s opening-round game between Washington (17-14) and USC (14-17).

Oumar Ballo, who averages 13.1 points and 10.1 rebounds, pointed out that Arizona hasn’t lost back-to-back games.

We’re going to respond,” Ballo said. “This was a wake-up call for us. This is going to make us better for a deep run in the postseason.