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Tuesday, September 21, 2010
USC and the Pac-12

By Mark Saxon

The odds of winning seven straight conference championships just got a lot stiffer for USC and, for once, it has nothing to do with NCAA sanctions.

The Pac-10 will expand to 12 teams next year, the conference announced Tuesday. Colorado was able to buy its way out of the Big 12 a year ahead of schedule.

The shift in numbers likely means there will be a conference championship game, another formidable hurdle that USC didn't have earlier this decade. USC won the Pac-10 every season from 2002 to 2008.

"I would assume that adds a championship game and more competition to an already very deep conference," Trojans coach Lane Kiffin said.

Is he a fan of the conference title game?

"Sure, if we're in it, I like it a lot," Kiffin said.