Fiu, Cirminiello, Mitchell on TV - Campus Insiders | Buy College Football Tickets

2011 Spring Preview Pac-12 North Questions
Washington WR Jermaine Kearse
Washington WR Jermaine Kearse
CollegeFootballNews.com
Posted Mar 17, 2011


The big questions surrounding each Pac-12 North team going into spring practices.


2011 Pac-12 Spring Preview

North Spring Questions

Click for each team's spring preview
North California | Oregon | Oregon St | Stanford | Washington | Washington State 
South Arizona | Arizona State | Colorado | UCLA | USC | Utah

2011 Pac-12 Spring Preview  
- 2011 Pac-12 North Spring Buzz
- 2011 Pac-12 South Spring Buzz
- 2011 Pac-12 North Spring Attitudes
- 2011 Pac-12 South Spring Attitudes
- 2011 Pac-12 North Spring Key Positions
- 2011 Pac-12 South Spring Key Positions   
- 2011 Pac-12 North Spring Questions 
- 2011 Pac-12 South Spring Questions    
- Pac-12 Spring Rankings

North

California

Who’s the starting quarterback? There’s no shortage of contenders, but sure-things to replace Kevin Riley come at a premium. Brock Mansion is the vet, but he flopped after Riley was injured, throwing two touchdown passes and five interceptions in five forgettable games. He’s clearly vulnerable. One of the more interesting contenders is Zach Maynard, a transfer from Buffalo and the best all-around athlete of the group. A starter in the MAC in 2009, he threw 18 touchdown passes and rushed for 300 yards. Beau Sweeney is on the verge of becoming a journeyman, and Allen Bridgford and Austin Hinder have yet to take a snap.

Oregon 

Can the Ducks maintain their intensity now that they’re clearly the hunted in the Pac-12? Back-to-back conference championships have put Oregon in the unique position of looking down at the rest of the field. However, can it play with the same drive and passion that it required to get to this spot? Chip Kelly and the rest of the staff know the team is loaded again on offense, but will have to pay special attention to keeping the Ducks focused and even-keeled between April and the start of another season.

Oregon State

Who become the new playmakers for returning starting QB Ryan Katz? Okay, so Quizz is off to the NFL and James is limping. Now what? The Beavers will use the next six months to surround Katz with athletes who can make yards on their own. The encouraging news is that his top three targets from 2010 return, H-back Joe Halahuni and wideouts Markus Wheaton and Jordan Bishop. The running game will be far less stable. Quizz was a workhorse the last three seasons, preventing the program from developing backups. The hope around the program is that Ryan McCants can go out strong in his senior season.

Stanford

Can David Shaw continue what Jim Harbaugh started? While Harbaugh is still in the Bay Area, he’ll be no help to the Cardinal as a member of the San Francisco 49er staff. Shaw and his assistants lack this level of experience, so they’ll be under the microscope immediately, especially after the 2010 squad played in a school-first BCS bowl game. The good news for Shaw, besides Luck’s decision to return to school, is that he was a part of the program’s rise and knows the personnel, especially on offense. It should make for a slightly smoother transition.

Washington

Who succeeds Jake Locker? It’s been six years since there’s truly been an open competition at the position at quarterback, so this is liable to create a genuine buzz around Seattle. The contenders will be sophomore Keith Price and redshirt freshman Nick Montana. Price has an extra year in the system and was the caddy in 2010, appearing sparingly in eight games. Montana, the son of NFL legend Joe Montana, isn’t the most physically imposing passer, but throws with accuracy and does a lot of little things well. Steve Sarkisian might not make a decision here until late in August.

Washington State 

Can the job of head coach Paul Wulff be saved in 2011? Well, it won’t technically happen in March or April, but if the Cougars are going to win six games and qualify for the postseason, it’ll all start in the spring. Wulff has gone 5-32 in three seasons, and the administration probably needs to see a bowl invitation in order to grant the coach a fifth year. Knowing what’s on the line, the staff has opened up the competition everywhere, leaving few holdovers safe if they’re unable to raise the level of their game.

Click for each team's spring preview
North California | Oregon | Oregon St | Stanford | Washington | Washington State 
South Arizona | Arizona State | Colorado | UCLA | USC | Utah

2011 Pac-12 Spring Preview  
- 2011 Pac-12 North Spring Buzz
- 2011 Pac-12 South Spring Buzz
- 2011 Pac-12 North Spring Attitudes
- 2011 Pac-12 South Spring Attitudes
- 2011 Pac-12 North Spring Key Positions
- 2011 Pac-12 South Spring Key Positions   
- 2011 Pac-12 North Spring Questions 
- 2011 Pac-12 South Spring Questions    
- Pac-12 Spring Rankings