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USC in a Wide Open Race for the South

Pac-12 scoreboard watching starts now.

NCAA Football: California at Southern California Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports

With an emphatic win on Thursday night against Cal, USC announced itself as a clear contender for the Pac-12 South. But an early season loss against the front-running Utah Utes means they still need help. This week, Coach Clay Helton acknowledged that the Trojans are already glued to the scoreboard when he told the LA Times he was watching Utah and Colorado “very closely,” and “cheering loud for their opponents."

Here’s a quick look at a few upcoming games that will impact what’s sure to be a wild race for the South.

Saturday:

No. 4 Washington (7-0) at No. 17 Utah (7-1) (12:30pm, FS1)

Oregon State v Washington
Jake Browning and the Huskies are looking to take down Utah and run the table in the Pac-12.
Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images

Trojan fans might not want to hear it, but if USC comes up short, this could be a preview of the Pac-12 championship game. Washington is the Pac-12’s only hope for an appearance in the College Football Playoff, and they will need to run the table to get there. If the Trojans are to have a chance in the South, Utah will have to stumble. With the Huskies in town, there’s actually a good chance that might happen.

Arizona State at Oregon (2:00pm, Pac-12)

Washington State v Arizona State
Is ASU out of it already?
Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Arizona State may have already put themselves out of contention, but this game is still one to keep an eye on. After an awful start, Oregon looked slightly better last week against Cal, and they could have enough to knock the Sun Devils out of it for good.

Next Week

Thursday, Nov 3rd:

UCLA at No. 23 Colorado (6:00pm, FS1)

NCAA Football: Colorado at Stanford
After another big win - this time against Stanford - Colorado still has eyes on the Pac-12 South title.
Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

UCLA QB Josh Rosen is still dealing with an injured shoulder, and may not be ready for next Thursday’s game in Boulder. That’s bad news for everyone except the Buffaloes. With a 4-1 conference record, Colorado is still atop the Pac-12 South standings along with Utah. If the Utes fall on Saturday, Colorado will be looking to pounce on a limping Bruins team.

Which games will you be watching? Let us know with your comments. And, of course, Fight On!

NCAA Football: California at Southern California Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports