McLaughlin: Opportunities for Pac-12 to Raise its Standing

Plus Spencer's preseason evaluation of USC's splash hire of former Oklahoma HC Lincoln Riley

Posted on June 15, 2022


  By Spencer McLaughlin of Locked on Pac-12 for SportsPac12

Pac-12A Pac-12 football team has not won a bowl game since 2019, a legitimate knock on the Conference.

However, it’s important to remember the major non-conference wins the league has had—such as UCLA beating LSU last year—and recognize the opportunities the conference has to generate more positive headlines this year.

Beyond the first two weeks, several Pac-12 teams have non-conference games on their schedule that are great opportunities to try and re-establish their brand on a national level.

On today’s episode of Locked On Pac-12, I continue to evaluate the coaches in the Conference—moving on now to looking at the most recent hires, beginning with the biggest offseason story in the Pac-12, Lincoln Riley going to USC, and the reasons why the hire made so many shockwaves across the national college football landscape.

usc logoHis resume is remarkably impressive, and the praise that his hire has garnered is well-deserved based on his time at Oklahoma. Even for a coach as smart as Lincoln Riley at a program like USC, there are still challenges that every team and coach has to overcome to succeed at a high level.

The toughest part for Coach Riley in this new job is a byproduct of why this hire made so many USC fans excited. The hype train is well justified, but the expectations placed upon him to win are among the highest in the nation.

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