Pac-12 South Pre-Spring - What Needs Work?
UCLA QB Johnathan Franklin
UCLA QB Johnathan Franklin
CollegeFootballNews.com
Posted Feb 12, 2012


2012 Pac-12 South Pre-Spring Preview - What Every Pac-12 South Team Needs To Work On.

2012 Pre-Spring Preview   

What To Work On - Pac-12 South



North California | Oregon | Oregon St | Stanford | Washington | Washington State
South Arizona | Arizona St | Colorado | UCLA | USC | Utah 

2012 Pac-12 Pre-Spring Preview
- Pre-Preseason Pac-12 North Rankings
- Pre-Preseason Pac-12 South Rankings
- Why Every Pac-12 North Team Should Be Excited
- Why Every Pac-12 South Team Should Be Excited
- Why Every Pac-12 North Team Should Be Grouchy
- Why Every Pac-12 South Team Should Be Grouchy
- What Every Pac-12 North Team Needs To Work On 
- What Every Pac-12 South Team Needs To Work On 
2012 Recruiting Rankings Pac-12 North | Pac-12 South

Arizona

The defense. While the overall numbers from 2011 are fine, the Arizona defense collapsed in the second half of the year. The pass rush was wildly inconsistent, and takeaways were as common as a cold snap in Tucson. There is hope for a rebound. Not only did the old regime use a slew of underclassmen last fall, but a handful of casualties are expected back from injury in the spring. LB Jake Fischer, DT Willie Mobley, S Adam Hall, CB Jonathan McKnight and LB Kyle Benson are all hoping to be back at full strength this season.

Arizona State

Bolstering the offensive line. This unit always seems to be a problem in Tempe, but it mattered a little less when a veteran, like QB Brock Osweiler, was standing in the pocket. Now that three unproven underclassmen are battling for reps, the inability to block could bring the entire offense crashing down. The Sun Devils must replace three starters, including All-Pac-12 C Garth Gerhart, from a unit that opened too few holes, and ranked 73rd nationally in sacks allowed. Expect the battle to fill out the two-deep to be long and intense, with a firm depth chart not decided until sometime in August.

Colorado

Defending the pass. There is no shortage of problems in Boulder, but tightening up in coverage is going to be a top priority this fall. The Buffaloes were whipped for 34 touchdown passes in 2011, while intercepting just seven balls, including three in one game. A pair of veterans are gone, which will hoist added responsibility on the shoulders of senior FS Ray Polk and corners Parker Orms and Greg Henderson.

UCLA

Cranking up the pass rush. The Bruins were 112th nationally in sacks in 2011, making life impossible for the overmatched defensive backs. No one had more than three sacks, allowing opposing quarterbacks to have all day to survey the field and check down receivers. DE Datone Jones passed on the NFL, which was encouraging news, but he’ll need a lot more help will be needed from the likes of Cassius Marsh on the inside, and Damien Holmes and Owamagbe Odighizuwa on the outside.

USC

Limiting big plays through the air. Although the situation improved during the second half of the year, Troy still experienced too many breakdowns in pass defense in 2011. Five different quarterbacks dinged the Trojans for at least two touchdowns in a game, and the team intercepted just nine passes. Since no one of significance graduated from this group, anything remotely close to last season’s results will be unacceptable. Carrying the torch on the last line of defense will be CB Nickell Robey and T.J. McDonald, a pair of first-team All-Pac-12 performers.

Utah

Getting crisper on offense. While there were spurts of effectiveness, Utah was mostly inconsistent with the ball in 2011. The team had a penchant for sputtering on third downs, and for tightening up in the red zone. Yeah, the presence of QB Jordan Wynn is expected to help, but how much? That shoulder issue is a nagging concern that’s prevented him from reaching his full potential. Although the D ought to be sound, it takes a steady flow of points to compete in the upper tier of the Pac-12.

North California | Oregon | Oregon St | Stanford | Washington | Washington State
South Arizona | Arizona St | Colorado | UCLA | USC | Utah 

2012 Pac-12 Pre-Spring Preview
- Pre-Preseason Pac-12 North Rankings
- Pre-Preseason Pac-12 South Rankings
- Why Every Pac-12 North Team Should Be Excited
- Why Every Pac-12 South Team Should Be Excited
- Why Every Pac-12 North Team Should Be Grouchy
- Why Every Pac-12 South Team Should Be Grouchy
- What Every Pac-12 North Team Needs To Work On 
- What Every Pac-12 South Team Needs To Work On 
2012 Recruiting Rankings Pac-12 North | Pac-12 South