Oregon Football is the Pac-12’s only hope for College Football Playoff

Kedon Slovis USC football. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
Kedon Slovis USC football. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports /

Of all the lackluster Pac-12 football programs out there, one certainly stands out as the best. But which one?

There is no need for sugarcoating it: the Pac-12 has no feet in the door when it comes to snatching a playoff spot this upcoming season. However, one of their powers has clearly stood out over all of its counterparts, so much so that even a blind man could see it. If one Pacific team possessed any probability of making the bracket, it would be Oregon football.

Oregon, along with the eleven other schools in their conference, has multiple flaws that cannot be overlooked. These can range anywhere from playing inconsistently to merely being part of a less passionate CFB demographic. But nonetheless, the Ducks are still head and shoulders above everyone else in the Pac. Let’s get into why.

Why Oregon football is the Pac-12’s top contender

Their recruiting performance is often one of the best in their entire geographic region, and head coach Mario Cristobal has received enormous praise for his orchestration of the program throughout his first few years with it.

But both names on a roster and coaching potential mean only as much as what unfolds on the field. With that in mind, Oregon football’s 2020 showing is as good of a reference to how 2021 will treat it as anything else.

In that regard, the Ducks looked a lot better than their record implied, finalizing their slate with a 4-3 tally. Meanwhile, the USC Trojans met them in the Pac-12 Championship Game with a perfect 5-0 in the books. And that is where the controversy of this take comes barreling in.

Yes, USC had a far superior record to Oregon’s. However, that does not change the outcome of their affair. No matter what all led up to it, the Ducks are still the defending Pac-12 Champs, not the Trojans.

And glancing back at recruiting, USC has left a ton to be desired with their annual hauls lately (especially by a blueblood’s standards).

So if Oregon football has both better recruiting and the conference title, all while beating them head-to-head, who should receive credit as the better team? And when you also consider that a global pandemic had been endlessly ripping the season to shreds, a squad can be given a pass for an undesirable record every now and again.

As we established at the beginning, the Pac-12 has virtually no shot at reaching the College Football Playoff next season; but if they were to, their Oregon Ducks would most likely be the ones to do so. The players, coaching, and conference trophy all speak for themselves.

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