clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

A look at the Pac-12 South race after Week 8

New, 6 comments

USC's upset over Utah Saturday made the Pac-12 South race a little more open...

Russ Isabella-USA TODAY Sports

Here is a look at each team's chances of winning the Pac-12 South:

1. Utah Utes (6-1, 3-1 Pac-12)

Status: In the lead

Tiebreakers owned: Arizona State

Tiebreakers lost: USC

Remaining schedule:
Oct. 31 - vs. Oregon State
Nov. 7 - at Washington
Nov. 14 - at Arizona
Nov. 21 - vs. UCLA
Nov. 28 - Colorado

Breakdown: Despite the loss to USC, the Utes are still in pretty good shape to hold their lead on the rest of the division. The only game left on Utah's schedule that raises flags right away is the Nov. 21 home game against UCLA. The Utes just didn't seem to match up well against a team like USC, but their next five matchups favor Utah.

2. USC Trojans (4-3, 2-2 Pac-12)

Status: One game back

Tiebreakers owned against: Utah, Arizona State

Tiebreakers lost: None

Remaining schedule:
Oct. 31 - at California
Nov. 7 - vs. Arizona
Nov. 13 - at Colorado
Nov. 21 - at Oregon
Nov. 28 - vs. UCLA

Breakdown: Never count out the Trojans no matter who is coaching on the sideline. They still could win the Pac-12 if the Utes lose once more. Despite USC's rejuvenation after its upset over Utah, the Trojans are nowhere near out of the woods. They have the second toughest remaining schedule and arguably one of the toughest in the entire nation. USC will certainly run into a plethora of issues in its three upcoming road games and we'll see if it's still standing when it faces UCLA in their annual cross-town classic.

3. Arizona State Sun Devils (4-3, 2-2 Pac-12)

Status: Two games back, in the mix

Tiebreakers owned: UCLA, Colorado

Tiebreakers lost: Utah, USC

Remaining schedule:
Oct. 29 - vs. Oregon
Nov. 7 - at Washington State
Nov. 14 - vs. Washington
Nov. 21 - vs. Arizona
Nov. 28 - at California

Breakdown: ASU's remaining schedule isn't a gauntlet, but not a cakewalk, either. Oregon and Arizona — both home games — have been utter disappointments this season, but Washington State and Cal — both road dates — have improved. Although the Sun Devils no longer control their own destiny, their chances of winning the Pac-12 South are not too farfetched, although they must win out and have USC lose once and Utah lose twice. The major wildcard is if ASU finds an answer for its offense that has sputtered all season long.

4. UCLA Bruins (5-2, 2-2 Pac-12)

Status: Three games back - down, but not out

Tiebreakers owned: Arizona

Tiebreakers lost: Arizona State

Remaining schedule:
Oct. 31 - vs. Colorado
Nov. 7 - at Oregon State
Nov. 14 - vs. Washington State
Nov. 21 - at Utah
Nov. 28 - at USC

Breakdown: A lot of comparisons could be made to the Bruins' L.A. counterpart. A statement win against California revived UCLA's division title hopes, albeit being on life support. The Bruins have a relatively easy schedule and could make a run in the next three weeks, but still have road dates against the South's top two teams. With UCLA two games back from Utah while still trying to avoid a tie with Arizona State, it'll take a miracle for the Bruins to somehow spring up to the top with five games left.

5. Arizona Wildcats (5-3, 2-3 Pac-12)

Status: Well, anything is possible

Tiebreakers owned: Colorado

Tiebreakers lost: UCLA

Remaining schedule:
Oct. 31 - at Washington
Nov. 7 - at USC
Nov. 14 - vs. Utah
Nov. 21 - at Arizona State

Breakdown: Basically, Arizona has to win out and hope Utah, USC, Arizona State and UCLA all face major NCAA sanctions this week and die a fiery death lose at least twice. After the Wildcats lost at home to Washington State, it seems unlikely that they'll get it back together to make an impossible run at the title. Looks like we'll have a new Pac-12 South champion this season.

6. Colorado Buffaloes (4-4, 1-3 Pac-12)

Status: Maybe next year

Tiebreakers owned: None

Tiebreakers lost: Arizona State, Arizona

Remaining schedule:
Oct. 31 - at UCLA
Nov. 7 - vs. Stanford
Nov. 13 - vs. USC
Nov. 21 - at Washington State
Nov. 28 - at Utah

Breakdown: If being the Buffaloes this season wasn't torture enough, Colorado closes out with the toughest five-game stretch in the conference and perhaps the entire nation.