National and non-AQ conference blogger Andrea Adelson is saying goodbye to Utah today, and she provided some insights into what she sees in the Utes' immediate future as a member of the new Pac-12.
She is optimistic, predicting a 9-3 finish in 2011, with the losses coming to USC, BYU and Arizona. The Utes don't play Oregon or Stanford, which is a big boost in Year 1.
I did a quick run-through of the Utes' schedule. I see 6-6 or 7-5, particularly with a pair of road nonconference games (at rival BYU and at Pittsburgh).
Utah only has 13 starters back, and quarterback Jordan Wynn will sit out spring practices with a shoulder injury. The Utes lost three of their final five games when the competition level increased: 47-7 to TCU, 28-3 to Notre Dame and 26-3 to Boise State. Oregon State, which finished 5-7 and 4-5 in the Pac-10, played far more competitive games with TCU and Boise State (30-21 and 37-24 defeats, respectively) and Stanford manhandled Notre Dame. USC lost a thriller to the Fighting Irish.
Of course, Washington lost to BYU, which Utah beat, and the Huskies went 5-4 in the Pac-10. So who knows? The transitive property isn't terribly reliable in college football.
What do you guys think?