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Most important game for each Pac-12 team in 2015

What are the most important game for each Pac-12 team in 2015?

Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Arizona - at Arizona State (November 21)

This is almost always going to be Arizona's most-important game, but it holds even more importance in 2015 with the teams expected to be so close in strength. This game could also determine whether Arizona gets back to the Pac-12 Championship Game and will at least hold some weight in the overall South race. This one is also extra important for Rich Rodriguez to avoid falling to 1-3 against the Sun Devils.

Arizona State - Arizona (November 21)

The Territorial Cup has been really fun recently with how close the Sun Devils and Wildcats have been. The Sun Devils almost assuredly will need to win this one to have any shot of winning the South and I am sure Todd Graham would love to avoid slipping to .500 against Arizona.

Cal - at Washington (September 26)

The Bears are trying to claw their way into the top half of the North and if they are going to do it, they are going to have to probably pry the Huskies out of it. The Bears have lost to the Huskies six-straight times and haven't won in Husky Stadium in a decade, so this will a major challenge for them, but one they need to conquer should they hope to make a run up the North totem pole.

Colorado - Colorado State (September 19)

Winning their first Pac-12 game since 2013 is extremely important for the Buffs, but task one is probably getting a win over their little brothers from a mid-major conference. If the Buffs can't get a win here, they will likely have a lot of trouble getting any wins in the Pac-12.

Oregon - USC (November 21)

The Ducks have an early-season non-conference showdown at Michigan State, but they can probably afford to drop that game and still have a great shot at the Playoff if they run the table in the Pac-12. The Ducks actually have a nice in-conference schedule (avoid UCLA & Arizona) and a part of that is getting their toughest opponent USC at home. This will likely be Oregon's biggest hurdle towards getting back to the Playoff.

Oregon State - Washington State (October 17)

Expectations are not high in Gary Andersen's first year, but the Beavers are still going to have to win some games. The Beavers have a great chance for a win here and can give themselves a great chance of avoiding the cellar of the North with a win over the Cougars.

Stanford - Oregon (November 14)

This game has kind of been a barometer for the Cardinal the past few seasons and they have pretty much no chance of winning the North if they can't win this one.

UCLA - at USC (November 28)

No question here. This game will likely have endless implications in the South race and likely in the Playoff race. This will also be huge for UCLA to maintain their dominance over their bitter crosstown rival.

USC - UCLA (November 28)

Another no question. There are endless implications here, but most important for the Trojans is ending their losing streak to the hated Bruins.

Utah - Arizona State (October 17)

The Utes are going to need to grab a win over an Arizona school is they are going to break out of the fifth spot in the South. Their best shot will be when Arizona State heads up to Salt Lake City in October.

Washington - Cal (September 26)

The Huskies have put a stranglehold on the third spot in the North and it is going to be tough to hang onto it in 2015 with all of the talent and experience they lost. Cal looks like the best challenger to potentially take third in the North from the Huskies, so they will need to take care of business in this match-up to hold court.

Washington State - at Washington (November 27)

The goal for the Cougars should be to get back to a bowl game this year and I have a hard time seeing them doing that if they can't beat a rebuilding Husky team. Besides, the Apple Cup is pretty much always Washington State's most-important game very year.