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Apple Cup May Be the Biggest Game of the Year for Pac-12

Washington and Washington State look like playoff contenders

NCAA Football: Washington at Washington State
Apple Cup may be the best rivalry game in the nation this year
James Snook-USA TODAY Sports

With both Pac-12 Washington schools in the top 10 of the AP poll and sitting on unblemished records we may be looking at the biggest and best Apple Cup in the history of the rivalry. Both teams look strong offensively and defensively. Washington has not faced any tough opponents so far but has summoned up the energy to gain convincing wins over its overmatched rivals. Washington State bested USC who were a favorite to make the college playoff and then went on to an easy win over an Oregon team that was forced to start a true freshman. Both Washington and Washington State have a favorable schedule until Apple Cup. Not to say there will not be some trap games along the way but the chances of seeing two undefeated teams in late November is significant based on the performance of both squads so far.

So what happens if both Washington and Washington State end up undefeated going into Apple Cup?

#1 The Pac-12 North champion will be crowned. If both teams are undefeated going into Apple Cup its mathematically impossible for any team outside these two that can win Pac-12 North since all other teams have lost at least one game.

#2 Likely this would be the deciding game for the Pac-12 in general. The Pac-12 North seems to be stronger overall then the South this year and likely to win the conference championship.

#3 Assuming that either Washington or Washington State win out and go undefeated the winning squad would be headed to the 4 team Playoff. With Oklahoma and Michigan losing this past week, the Pac-12 has a much clearer path to put a team into the College Playoff. Right now as it stands Alabama (or possibly Georgia), Clemson, Penn State and Washington or Washington State would be your playoff teams.

#4 Winning the Apple Cup could put either Luke Falk or Jake Browning into Heisman contention for at least a top 5 spot. Depending on their performance the rest of the season. Luke Falk has a much strong er chance thus far at winning the coveted Heisman but some big performances from Browning could catch him up. The run heavy garbage time stats for Washington have put a damper on Browning's overall stats but in more competitive games he may be forced to light up the defenses and get his name back on the board.

#5 It is almost a certainty that College Gameday would be returning to Seattle for an end of season matchup of two undefeated top 10 teams. Sorry Coug Nation but Ol' Crimson is not coming home just yet but being featured in a College Gameday matchup will surely bring some more attention to the infamous traveling flag.

Both Cougar fans and Huskies are already getting excited about this matchup. Those more casual fans who may have skipped Apple Cup in the past are now chomping at the bit to get tickets. Even if one or both teams lose a game going into Apple Cup it is likely this will be one of the most exciting matchups of the season for the Pac-12.

One more thing....

I still think Washington is going to blow out Washington State again this year. Go Huskies!