What's the best that could happen? What's the worst that could happen? That's what so many college football fans are asking themselves heading into the 2016.
This summer, I am going to be taking a look at each Pac-12 program, their 2016 schedule and take a stab at what the best and worst-case scenarios for their seasons. Obviously 12-0 is always the best-case scenario and 0-12 the worst, but I am keeping it between the lines of what I think can really happen with these team and what I think could lead to both scenarios.
Let's get started with Arizona.
Best case scenario 9-3 (6-3)
Arizona stock is ice cold after a three-win Pac-12 season in 2015 but let's not forget, they are only one season removed from winning the South with very similar personnel. If Anu Solomon takes the next step, Nick Wilson stays healthy and they can find a way to find some defense without Scooby Wright, they could easily compete for the South crown.
Looking at Arizona's schedule the big test will come in the middle where they face a six-game gauntlet which starts with Washington at home, hits the road at UCLA at Utah, hosts USC and Stanford and then sends them to Pullman. Even if all goes right, I think it would be very optimistic to say the Wildcats could do better than a split with these three games.
So if the Wildcats can do that, they get to nine wins, six in-conference and have a chance to win the South depending on tie breakers and how the rest of the division breaks down.
Worst case scenario 4-8 (2-7)
The Wildcats were a disaster towards the end of 2015 and it looked like Rich Rodriguez may be headed out of Tucson. There is a very good chance, this could continue into 2015 and the Wildcats could further their slip down the South.
The strength of the middle of the Pac-12 could set up for the Wildcats to miss a bowl game for the first time in quite a while if their system continues to be less of a weapon in the Pac-12 and they don't make strides at quarterback or on the defense. They should be able to win their soft non-conference games against Grambling State and Hawaii and win at least a couple in-conference games, probably against Colorado and at Oregon State, even if things don't go well.