Pac-12 Preview

Oregon is still the favorite to win the Pac-12, but UCLA, USC, and Utah are about 2x more likely than the Ducks to make a NYS Bowl as an at-large. The Pac-12 South has DEPTH. What about the Arizona schools, in the middle of 4 teams who average between 5.6 and 5.4 conference wins over 10,000 simulated seasons. UCLA is picked to win the division.

Of the Pac-12 South contenders, Arizona suffers the most from a weak OOC schedule. After UCLA they record the highest total win% and highest chance of winning the division, but are the only team from the division (including Colorado) more likely to make a NYS Bowl through a Pac-12 Championship than as an at-large.

Stanford is the other contender this year, fourth most likely to appear in the CCG, sixth most likely to win, just above Utah. Utah curiously averages the second highest conference win% from the South yet is the fifth most likely to win the division. With conference wins so tight, this is most easily accounted for by a margin or error, but I’m sure the Utes will enjoy their current #2 ranking.

While Oregon is most likely to win the conference (37%) as well as to appear in a NYS Bowl (47%) among conference teams, UCLA is the team most likely to make the playoff (17%) and win the National Championship (4%). We attribute this to the high strength of schedule that comes from winning the Pac-12 South. Remember Arizona was ranked #7 going into last year’s title game, despite 2 losses.

At the beginning of the year there is still lots of hope for the other teams. After 10,000 simulated seasons even Colorado made the playoff once (though likely on the back of a strong schedule and lucky wins… they promptly lost). Anything is possible.

The Output

W-L (cW-cL) Team (NC/FF/NYS) (CC/DC) undefeated
9.2992-2.7008(6.6903-2.3097) UCLA (471/1760/4510)(2023/3471) 377
7.9138-4.0862(5.6401-3.3599) Utah (141/645/2461)(554/1072) 78
8.2785-3.7215(5.6195-3.3805) Arizona (124/543/1947)(1074/2281) 104
7.8909-4.1091(5.4594-3.5406) Arizona St (98/431/1674)(796/1669) 67
7.9278-4.0722(5.4213-3.5787) USC (162/710/2531)(811/1486) 71
3.9388-9.0612(1.5335-7.4665) Colorado (0/1/22)(7/21) 0

9.1246-2.8754(6.7006-2.2994) Oregon (352/1336/4775)(3716/7276) 305
7.3182-4.6818(5.2705-3.7295) Stanford (52/328/1520)(698/1758) 34
5.4876-6.5124(3.7876-5.2124) Washington (15/72/317)(161/425) 11
4.7614-7.2386(2.7925-6.2075) California (7/21/128)(97/318) 0
4.7177-7.2823(2.7390-6.2610) Oregon St (5/13/81)(51/148) 2
4.0153-7.9847(2.3457-6.6543) Wash St (1/3/26)(12/75) 0

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