Pac 12 is bowled over
There is still a week’s worth of bowls to be played, but the Pac 12 has no more participants. The conference’s postseason was culminated with Oklahoma State’s dramatic 41-38 overtime victory over Stanford on Monday night, which officially closed the book on the 2011 season.
As the dust settles, we see a conference that fared as expected. And if we compare end results with Vegas odds, the expectation was exceeded. The Pac 12 entered the postseason with six of seven teams playing the role of underdog. It exits with a 2-5 bowl record, with just a single dog gnashing to victory.
Utah, like Stanford, played its favored opponent to a regulation draw. But unlike the Cardinal, the Utes would outlast the adversary in the extra frame. The conference newcomer was the lone underdog to show teeth and deliver a bite, with the remaining five succumbing to greater programs and adding new numbers to an already dismal out of conference mark.
#3 Oklahoma State 41, #4 Stanford 38 (OT)†
#7 Boise State 56, Arizona State 24
#12 Baylor 67, Washington 56
#24 Texas 21, Cal 10
Illinois 20, UCLA 14
#5 Oregon 45, #10 Wisconsin 38†
Utah 30, Georgia Tech 27 (OT)
Oregon captured the Rose Bowl trophy for the first time in 95 years, which also gave third-year Coach Chip Kelly his first bowl win. It was the Pac 12’s only victory over a ranked bowl opponent, and sent No. 10 Wisconsin to a second consecutive Rose Bowl loss.
Washington would score 56 points, yet lose by 11, prompting immediate changes in its defensive staff. UCLA lost for the eighth time this season, solidifying its place in history as the worst team by record (6-8) to ever appear in a bowl. The worst defeat was suffered by Arizona State, losing by 32-points to No. 7 Boise State. All other conference losses were by 11-points or less.
- The Pac 12 finishes with a season record of 7-9 versus opposing BCS AQ conferences.
- The Pac 12 finishes 2-8 verses ranked out of conference opponents, with Oregon over No. 10 Wisconsin and ASU over No. 21 Missouri accounting for the league’s only victories.
- The Pac 12 finished with an overall season record of 2-5 versus the Big 10, and 1-5 against the Big 12.
- With the inclusion of Notre Dame, USC season opponents were a combined 2-6 in bowl games.
- Oregon and Wisconsin set a new Rose Bowl record, with the teams combining for 83-points. With 123 combined points in the Alamo Bowl, Washington and Baylor played in the highest-scoring regulation bowl game in history.
- Oregon, Stanford and USC finished with double-digit victories, marking the first time since 2006 that the conference has finished with three teams posting 10 wins or more.
- Following bowl game losses, Washington running back Chris Polk and Arizona State linebacker Vontaze Burfict announced they will forgo their senior years and enter the NFL draft.