Jason O. Watson
There have been rumblings for some time that BYU's visit to Pullman was going to be taken off the schedule. Today, it was made official.
The conventional thinking was that it was BYU who would back out of the game, but today we found out that it was WSU that rescheduled the game:
Coach Bronco Mendenhall said Virginia replaces Washington State on the 2013 schedule.
"Virginia was as a result of Washington State wanting out of the contract," he said. [snip]
Washington State visited BYU in this year's season-opener as part of a home-and-home arrangement, with BYU scheduled to visit WSU next season. Will BYU eventually play WSU in Pullman, Wash.?
"That's really up to them," Mendenhall said. "They chose to not want the game. I don't know if we go back there or not."
The answer, it turns out, is yes: Christian Caple is reporting that the game will be played in 2019, with FCS opponent Southern Utah replacing BYU on the 2013 schedule.
WSU will replace BYU with Southern Utah on next season's schedule. That game will be played Sept. 14. BYU moved to 2019 in Pullman.— Christian Caple (@ChristianCaple) November 8, 2012
Bill Moos said in a release that BYU game was moved "at our request" to "provide greater balance to our future schedules."— Christian Caple (@ChristianCaple) November 8, 2012
So here's what the 2013 schedule looks like:
- Non-conference: at Auburn (Aug. 31), vs. Southern Utah (Sept. 14), vs. Idaho (Sept. 21)
- Divisional: at Cal, vs. Stanford, at Oregon, vs. Oregon State, at Washington
- Non-divisional: Arizona, ASU, USC, Colorado
The home/road games for divisional opponents assumes that it will alternate from year to year. I have no reason to believe that won't be the case -- I can't imagine they'd screw with that. However, as near as I can tell, it hasn't been decided yet which of the four non-divisional opponents will be coming to Pullman. I think we can assume we're probably headed to USC, since playing in Los Angeles every other year is a big deal to the program. Because of that, I'd also assume that Colorado is actually coming back up here again next year -- I can't imagine they'd have both Arizona schools come here.
So, here's what you're probably looking at in terms of a Pullman schedule next year: Southern Utah, Idaho, Stanford, Colorado and Arizona or ASU.
How do you feel about that?
EDIT: Kyle Sherwood points out that the conference has, in fact, sent both Arizona schools to Pullman and WSU to both Arizona schools in consecutive years. That was back in the days of the eight-game conference schedule, which resulted in some pretty wacky stuff from year to year. I still think the Pac-12 would consider that less than ideal, but who knows if they'd see that as better or worse than Colorado coming to Pullman in consecutive years and WSU going two years between visits to Boulder.
My guess, the more I think about it? How this shakes out probably will be determined by other scheduling priorities and will have little to nothing to do with preference about ASU/Arizona/Colorado. So, here's the revised schedule projection:
Southern Utah, Idaho, Stanford, and two of Colorado and/or Arizona and/or ASU.