Friday, June 3, 2011
Poll: Which Pac-12 team bounces back in 2011?
By Ted Miller
Every season, teams disappoint. And, every season, teams bounce back from disappointing seasons.
It's fair to say that California, Colorado, Oregon State, UCLA and Washington State walked away from the 2010 season feeling sour.
California suffered its first losing campaign in nine seasons with coach Jeff Tedford. Colorado suffered through a dead-man-walking trudge that ended the horribly disappointing run of coach Dan Hawkins.
Oregon State experienced its first losing season since 2005 after winning 36 games over the previous four seasons. UCLA coach Rick Neuheisel is on the hot seat after what was supposed to be a reclamation project instead yielded a second 4-8 record in three years.
In three seasons under coach Paul Wulff, Washington State has won only two Pac-10 games. And five games total. The Cougars, who finished ranked in the top 10 three consecutive years from 2001-2003, have become completely irrelevant.
Five teams that were sitting at home, miserable, last bowl season.
Ah, but you can bet at least one of these teams will be smiling more than frowning at season's end. A couple of their coaches need that if they are going to be around in 2012.
But who is the most likely to bounce back, post a winning season and play in a bowl game?