If USC doesn’t make the Pac-12 title game this year, it can look to Pullman and Washington State

What do we always say about any pursuit of a conference or division championship in sports? Control what you can control. The USC Trojans led the Utah Utes by 14 points on October 15. They needed to protect that lead. They still led by seven points with one minute left. They needed to protect that lead.

They did not. If they had, they wouldn’t be in an uncomfortable position right now in the Pac-12 championship race.

We can all see and admit that.

Yet, it’s hard to avoid noticing that two of USC’s foremost competitors for the Pac-12 title were both in big trouble in Pullman this season. Both were able to escape Washington State.

Oregon was down 34-22 to the Cougars with four minutes left in regulation and then scored 20 points. Thursday night, Utah was without Cam Rising, Tavion Thomas, and Micah Bernard (on top of Brant Kuithe, who was lost for the season several weeks ago). The Utes still won.

Let’s look at this game from a Washington State perspective:

YIKES

I SENSE A TREND

TARGETING INSANITY, CONTINUED

FUMBLED PUNT

3RD AND 16 AGAINST A BACKUP QB

WASHINGTON STATE OFFENSE

NO ADJUSTMENTS

THEY HAD THE LEAD, REMEMBER

THAT WEIRD, LATE POOCH KICK

A BRIGHT SPOT

THE DUDE

ALL OVER THE FIELD

THE BIG PICTURE

COLLAPSE

Story originally appeared on Trojans Wire