Monday, October 7, 2013

The Pac-12 is Strong This Year

If you read this blog you are probably aware I'm a University of Washington Huskies football fan.  In fact, I'm a bit of a die-hard fan: I even stuck by them through the Tyrone Willingham era which culminated in an 0-12 season in 2008.  So I was really excited this year because the Huskies are looking really good (with only one loss so far and that was to #5 Stanford and on what I think was a bad call).

That's the good news.  The bad news is, the Pac-12, their conference, is looking really strong this year, too.  We are through six weeks of play this year and there is only one team in the Pac-12 that has a losing record: California at 1-4.  (Yes, Colorado is 2-2 but, technically, that's not a losing record.)  And there are still three undefeated teams: Oregon (#2 in the AP rankings), Stanford (#5) and UCLA (#11).  And three more teams have only lost one game so far: Washington (#16), Oregon State (unranked since their first-week loss to an FCS team), and Arizona (who has only played 4 games).  So half the Pac-12 have lost one game or less.

The Huskies, it seems, chose a bad year to be good.  Looking at their upcoming schedule they play Oregon next week, a game I think they have a chance to win given how well they played against Stanford, and after that I don't see a team that they shouldn't beat (UCLA will be a challenge, too).  I'll take a 10-2 regular season and then a bowl win.  I'd even be happy with 9-3 and a bowl win.  And next year, even though some key players will be leaving such as quarterback Keith Price, I'll bet they'll be pretty good if not better (their backup quarterback who will probably start next year looked pretty good against Idaho State).

And if head coach Steve Sarkisian at the helm, I think they will continue to improve.  As long as Sarkisian doesn't get lured to the NFL.  Or back to USC.

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