Pac-12 Football Media Day kicked off Wednesday morning in Hollywood. Although, when taking a look at the preseason media poll, Sun Devil fans may want to turn their heads. ASU was picked to finish sixth in the South Division, with USC and Washington atop each’s respective divisons.
ASU picked to finish 6th in the south in the Pac-12 Preseason Media Poll. Here’s the full list: pic.twitter.com/SsD88dO4Qb— Jordan Kaye (@jordankaye_23) July 25, 2018
There doesn’t seem to be optimism about the team in Tempe under Herm Edwards. The Sun Devils were also the only team in the south without a first-place vote.
Even with the losses of quarterback Sam Darnold and running back Ronald Jones, reigning conference champions, USC, are seen as the frontrunners for the division. Behind the Trojans, Utah the second most first-place votes. Behind quarterback Khalil Tate, Arizona was picked to finish third in Kevin Sumlin’s inaugural season in control of Arizona.
Chip Kelly’s UCLA Bruins and Mike MacIntyre’s Colorado Buffalos round out the South standings before the Sun Devils appear in last.
On the other side in the North, the Washington Huskies are the clear-cut favorite of the media to win not only the division, but the entire conference. Stanford and Oregon follow Chris Peterson’s group.
Cal, Washington State and Oregon State, who received the least amount of points of the conference, finish in the back half of the poll.
In a more positive outlook, the south does look to be more open for the taking. USC is the favorite, but its also replacing a top-three NFL Draft pick at the game’s most important position. Utah had the same regular season record as the Sun Devils last year, but ASU had victories over the Utes, Buffs and Wildcats last year.
You also don’t have to go far to find the last team to be picked last in the South to win it. In 2016, Colorado was selected to finish last by the media before winning the division and losing in the conference title game to Washington.
There’s a reason the games are played and not just predicted. And a former New York Jets coach once said: ‘You play to win the game.’