Taking a cue from David Ubben on the Big-12 blog, it seemed reasonable to look back three years in the Pac-12 after we projected what might happen over the next three years.
We start with the North Division.
You will not be surprised Oregon and Stanford are at the top by a wide margin. It might be a surprise that only Washington joins those two as over .500 in overall and conference record.
North Division (future power ranking in Pac-12)
Oregon (1): 36-4 (12-1, 12-2, 12-1)
Stanford (2): 35-5 (12-2, 11-2, 12-1)
Washington (4): 21-18 (7-6, 7-6, 7-6)
Oregon State (5): 17-20 (9-4, 3-9, 5-7)
California (9): 15-22 (3-9, 7-6, 5-7)
Washington State (10): 9-27 (3-9, 4-8, 2-10)
Oregon: 25-2 (8-1, 8-1, 9-0)
Stanford: 24-3 (8-1, 8-1, 8-1)
Washington: 15-12 (5-4, 5-4, 5-4)
Oregon State : 13-14 (6-3, 3-6, 4-5)
California: 9-18 (2-7, 4-5, 3-6)
Washington State: 4-23 (1-8, 2-7, 1-8)
Alabama and Boise State have 35 wins over the past three years -- LSU has 34 -- so that gives you all the perspective you need on Oregon and Stanford. The Ducks and Cardinal are among the super-elite over the past three seasons.
If you recall that Washington was 9-28 the three seasons before this, it might make three consecutive seven-win seasons not seem as dispiriting.
Or maybe it won't. We know how things go.
It's no secret Washington State has been in the pits for a while. But keep in mind if we did the three years from 2001 to 2003, the Cougars would be 30-8. Cougs, I feel confident the next three years won't feature an average of three wins.
Cal's record certainly illustrates what went wrong for Jeff Tedford. Throw in parallel academic downturn, and you see the case supporting Tedford's termination.
The Beavers are held back by one horrible season -- 3-9 in 2012 -- which preceded a strong bounce-back year this fall.
Kevin ranked Washington fourth and Oregon State fifth in his future power rankings, behind Oregon, Stanford and UCLA. That's how I would have had it, too.
You could make a fairly strong argument that there won't be many dramatic changes to this pecking order over the next three years. For example, do any of you expect Oregon or Stanford to fall into the bottom half? And what about a bottom three team moving into the top-two?
That said, I feel certain Cal and Washington State will play in a bowl game at least once over the next three years, and the Ducks and Cardinal will be hard-pressed to win 35 or 36 games from 2013-15.