The Pac-12 Conference is aligned with seven bowls for the 2012 college football season. And trying to figure out who will go where this early in the process is a little daunting, considering all the additional and secondary issues that can confound a prediction.
With that, I tried to formulate a general idea of who would beat who and from there, placed the teams where they looked most likely to land. Remember, bowls can sometimes choose who they want if teams are tied. Then it's a matter of which schools will draw better. Here's an educated guess of where teams may end up in which bowl games along with a comment.
New Mexico Bowl: Arizona Wildcats - The answer to this bowl is who do I think will win the Arizona at Utah contest in the next to last game of the year? The winner goes to Albuquerque and the loser stays home for the winter. Utes lack of offense keeps them in Salt Lake City.
Las Vegas Bowl: Washington Huskies - This isn't necessarily a good place for the Huskies to end up but their lack of offense has them not much better than .500.
Holiday Bowl: UCLA Bruins - They have improved from their former Jekyll and Hyde days under Rick Neuheisel and get here because they will beat Stanford at the end of the season for an eight win year.
Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl: Stanford Cardinal - The Cardinal season will not continue to be a good one. Weakness on offense coupled with playing several highly explosive teams on their schedule will bring them down to this local Bay Area contest.
Alamo Bowl: Oregon State Beavers - What a rebound year after a couple of miserable seasons for Mike Riley's Beavers. They won't stay undefeated but who cares in Corvallis - this ends up being a nine or ten win season and a trip to an excellent bowl.
Sun Bowl: Arizona State Sun Devils - This year has seen a vast improvement by the Sun Devils who will go to a nice bowl and set the stage for an even bigger future.
Rose Bowl: Oregon Ducks - To make a choice between the Ducks and Trojans is like tossing a coin. I don't believe USC has shown their best yet and Oregon has and because of that the Ducks end up in Pasadena, which isn't a bad consolation.
BCS Championship: USC Trojans - Some will be aghast at my selection but the schedule dictates that if the Trojans win out (see related articles), they will end up in the title game. Consider this: USC has not played well and yet they're 5-1 and in the BCS Top 10. I'm sure we'll all revisit this after Saturday evening is over on November 3rd.
I don't believe California or Utah will be .500 at season's end although they play each other the week after this in Salt Lake City and that winner is a big maybe for qualifying bowl-wise. It's possible that the Pac-12 could have as many as ten schools with qualifying records - a team has to be .500 to qualify for a bowl game.
Sources - Pac-12 Conference, ESPN
Daryle lived in Los Angeles Ca. most of his life and has been a longtime fan of USC and the Pac-12, having closely followed the Trojans since he was just a youngster. Fight On!