Yahoo Sports’ Jason Fitz reacts to the Huskies 34-31 win over the Ducks for the Pac-12 championship.
JASON FITZ: The last ever Pac-12 championship game, as we know it, lived up to the hype. And yet, again, Washington found a way to beat Oregon by the magic number of three points. The ramifications on this are huge not just for the college football playoff, not just for these teams, but also for the Heisman. Hear me out.
Going into this game, we knew what was at stake for Washington and Oregon. Now, it is clear that Oregon's season is going to be forever remembered for what they couldn't do, beat their rival Washington in their last year of the Pac-12. With this rival, they lost both of their games to this team, and it will keep them out of the college football playoff.
Conversely, Washington's looking around and saying, hey, we just got the best win anybody's going to get of the favorites this weekend. Remember, the college football playoff committee already told you, they value Oregon more than Alabama. They value Oregon more than any other one-loss team. So the value of the win Washington just got might even move them up farther in the standings. Washington is going to turn around and say, hey, committee, you said you wanted to see a more complete team, well, we played better as a defense. And we were complete as an offense committing to running the football. Those are all the ramifications that could impact Washington going into the playoffs.
But there's also the individual conversation of the Heisman. Let's remember that we expected the winning quarterback of this game to be a Heisman frontrunner. While Michael Penix, Jr. was very good, I don't know that you would say that he was the main key that won this game for Washington. In fact, that may have been Dillon Johnson, the running back, who goes for 28 carries, 154 yards, two touchdowns on the ground. Oh, and also had a touchdown through the air. Dillon Johnson was a huge part of why Washington was going to get this win. And as a result, now, you have to look over and wonder, will Jayden Daniels' season with LSU, even without a conference championship game, be enough to win him the Heisman? All from one epic game.
Washington, tip of the cap. You are headed to the college football playoff. There's no way that doesn't happen. Oregon will always wonder what might have been. And we may find out in New York that the ramifications for this game were huge for all of college football.