Watch the Arizona vs. Oregon Pac-12 Championship: Game guide, TV schedule, streaming
It’s a West Coast grudge match in the Pac-12 Championship Game, and there’s an awful lot on the line.
The No. 2 Oregon Ducks will have a chance to avenge the single blemish on their 2014 season on Friday night when they face the No. 7 Arizona Wildcats in the Pac-12 Championship Game. The Wildcats went into Autzen Stadium back on Oct. 2nd and left with a 31-24 win, and one would think they were hoping they can get a chance at revenge.
Both teams have matured as the season has progressed. The Ducks have laid waste to everyone in their path since the loss, and have become much healthier on a once-battered offensive line. Quarterback Marcus Mariota has become the odds-on Heisman favorite after posting a staggering line of 36 touchdowns to only two interceptions, and they have a power running option in Royce Freeman. Offensively, they are a juggernaut.
However, that offensive machine has had a tough time figuring out Arizona’s 3-3-5 defense. The Wildcats have scored two straight wins over the Ducks, and have been held to 24 and 16 points in those games. Head coach Rich Rodriguez and the offense generally get the lion’s share of the attention and for good reason, but the improved defense has been a big reason why they’ve won double-digit games for the first time since 1998. Another big reason for the Wildcats’ success this year is the emergence of running back Nick Wilson, who has capably filled the shoes vacated by Ka’Deem Carey.
How to watch, listen, and stream
Game time: Friday, Dec. 5th, 9 p.m. ET
TV: FOX (Gus Johnson, Charles Davis, and Molly McGrath)
Online streaming: Fox Sports Go
Rankings and records: Oregon enters the game at 11-1 (8-1 Pac-12), and ranked No. 2 in the College Football Playoff rankings. Arizona is 10-2 (7-2 Pac-12), and ranked 7th in the College Football Playoff rankings. Oregon leads the all-time series 24-16, but Arizona has won two straight.
Weather forecast: Chance of showers with a high of 67.
Two things at stake
For Oregon, a place in the College Football Playoff. Win and you’re in: That’s what the Ducks are looking at. Considering the way the selection committee has voted so far this year, Oregon can expect to book their flight to the Playoff semifinals with a win over Arizona. They don’t need help from anyone else, they don’t need to earnestly watch scores on Saturday. Just win the conference and they’re in.
For Arizona, their first-ever outright Pac-12 title. Since joining the Pac-10 in 1978, the Wildcats have only once won a share of the conference title. However, since that 1993 team lost the tiebreaker with UCLA, they have never once gone to the Rose Bowl. Barring some serious shenanigans from the teams ahead of them in the Playoff rankings this weekend, that streak will continue, but they can say with confidence that they are the outright Pac-12 champions if they can beat Oregon.
One big matchup
Marcus Mariota vs. Scooby Wright. It’s pretty simple, really. Arguably the best offensive player in the country against arguably the best defensive player in the country. The Wildcats forced Mariota into probably his worst game of the season last time, and Wright forced the crucial fumble that allowed Arizona to seal the win. Both Mariota and Wright have been on fire ever since their previous meeting, and it’s easy to envision one or the other making the big play to clinch a win.