Larry Scott must be cringing tonight. The Pac-12 championship game is headed to Autzen Stadium, and it could be a blood sacrifice next Friday night in Eugene.
The Oregon Ducks looked haggard for about one quarter before totally obliterating the Oregon St. Beavers, and they will capture the Pac-12 North title. Perhaps the only good thing about this whole situation is that the game will be played in Oregon rather than a neutral site, so the game should be sold out.
Everything else will be a mess.
- Oregon will face a 6-6 UCLA squad for the championship. The Ducks will probably be favored by three to four touchdowns.
- The Bruins have not win a significant road game in the Rick Neuheisel era, and have been blown out in their previous three road games.
- The last time UCLA went up to Autzen stadium, they lost 60-13.
Scott would have loved to put out a rematch of USC-Oregon that featured the best of the conference and dazzled the country a week ago in primetime, but the Trojans are bowl ineligible and will see their season ends tonight. Scott probably knew what he was getting when the Pac-12 South was formed, but I doubt he foresaw the division falling apart like this.
So one of two less than ideal scenarios could occur a week from now.
- Oregon beats up UCLA as expects in one of the least anticipated title games ever. The Bruins fall to 6-7 after losses to USC and Oregon and don't even make a bowl, leaving the Pac-12 with only six bowl eligible teams.
- The nightmare: UCLA beats Oregon in one of the greatest upsets ever and ends up in the Rose Bowl, where they will probably embarrass the conference against whatever team reps the Big 10. Oregon falls out of the BCS and into the Alamo, and the three best teams in the conference (Stanford, Oregon, USC) are somehow on the outside looking in of the BCS.
Not so rosy indeed. Scott better be doing his best "O" signal from the press box this Saturday, or the Pac-12's debut year could be horrifying for the overall standing of the conference.