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The Pac-12 is coming off a 2020 season that very nearly wasn’t played and had most playing less than 7 games. There weren’t any non-conference games and it could be a year where everything should just be discarded.
In 2021, it looks like much of the same suspects returning to the top of the standings. In the North one must always start in Eugene with the Oregon Ducks. They have a question mark at QB but they are usually good on offense. They have recruited extremely well and the defense has shown much improvement.
Washington returns the entire offensive line, a steady QB, and receivers who are talented. They have Oregon in Seattle and that could decide the North Division.
USC has talent as always but needs more consistent play at QB. Their conference schedule is very manageable and that might give the inside track to the South title especially if the defense takes a step forward.
A lot of pundits think Coach Herman Edwards and his Arizona State Sun Devils are the team to beat in the South. They have a great QB and their offense may be the best in the Pac-12. But, they have a leaky defense and their conference schedule is tough.
Then there is Stanford which is always a tough out. Their offensive line and running back positions look strong but QB is an issue. Defensively, they lost some important pieces that have to be replaced. They probably aren’t ready to return to the top but they will beat one of the big boys you can bet on that.
Utah will bring their physical best in the Pac-12 defense with them wherever they go and they will always have a chance to win because of it. And they got a huge shot in the arm with QB Charlie Brewer transferring from Baylor. He gives their offense instant credibility and much improvement. Watch out for the Utes!
Colorado had a good, abbreviated season in 2020 but finished the year with back-to-back lopsided losses to Utah and Texas in the bowl Game. How will they hold up over a 12 game season?
The rest include UCLA still trying to break through in Coach Chip Kelly’s 4th year and it’s not looking too promising in 2021. California is just average (aren’t they always) and Oregon State might be better than UCLA or Cal. Looks like another down year for Arizona and Washington State.
The Pac-12 is looking for a team to come out of the conference worthy of making the 4-team playoffs. They have had good teams in the recent past but not great teams. It looks like that might be the same result this year.
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