Pac-12 South clinching scenarios: Division champ to be decided Friday
Here's a Black Friday rush for you: In the span of about four hours on Friday afternoon, three teams will make a mad scramble for one spot in the 2014 Pac-12 Football Championship Game.
Three teams - UCLA, Arizona State and Arizona - head into the final weekend of regular season play with a shot at representing the Pac-12 South in the Dec. 5 title game at Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara, California. And, thanks to the schedule, they're all playing at the exact same time on Friday afternoon.
The scenarios that lead to a clinch are remarkably simple this week, especially if you compare it to the past few weeks when five teams were still in the running for the elusive championship game berth. In no better terms, if UCLA wins, they're in. If they don't, the winner of the Territorial Cup punches a ticket for NorCal.
Here are all the possibilities:
No. 8 UCLA has the clearest path to Santa Clara. In control of its own postseason destiny, a win over the Stanford Cardinal in their home finale Friday (12:30 PT, ABC) means the Bruins face Oregon in the Pac-12 Football Championship Game. It would be a rematch of the first conference title game, which the Ducks took in 2011 at Autzen Stadium in Eugene.
No. 11 Arizona needs help, but its chances of going to the program's first-ever title game are very much alive. A victory over rival Arizona State in Tucson (12:30 PT/1:30 MT, FOX) coupled with a UCLA loss means the Wildcats are going to Santa Clara.
The same goes for No. 13 Arizona State. A victory over Arizona paired with a Bruins loss sends the Sun Devils to their second-straight championship game. ASU fell to Stanford in last year's title game at Sun Devil Stadium in Tempe.
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All of these roads, without fail, lead to Silicon Valley and the fourth Pac-12 Football Championship Game, which kicks off at 6 PT/7 MT on Fox. Don't forget to get your tickets right here.