Pac-12 win totals: Utah, Oregon State trending up
The Pac-12 is up for grabs in 2021.
There are plenty of wild cards capable of winning the division, which makes win totals especially intriguing.
Here's how the field stacks up, as well as where we'd put our money.
2021 Pac-12 win totals
This is a prime opportunity for Utah head coach Kyle Whittingham to capture his first Pac-12 title.
The Utes will be led by a graduate transfer quarterback for the second straight year after exhausting former South Carolina signal-caller Jake Bentley over a five-game campaign in 2020.
In steps Charlie Brewer, who threw for 9,700 yards and 65 touchdowns in four seasons at Baylor. He has loads of experience, and a shift to the Pac-12 from the Big 12 is seemingly a lateral move in terms of the competition he'll face.
But most importantly, he'll have help - something he didn't get last season en route to a 2-7 record with the Bears. Utah returns the eighth-most production in the entire nation, including the fifth-most experienced defense.
Whittingham has registered at least nine wins in five of his last six seasons, and the only dud over that sample was a 7-6 mark in 2017, in which Utah lost three games by three points or fewer.
Oregon State is on the cusp of something special, and we could see some of those flashes materialize as early as this season.
Although the Beavers were out-gained by 0.7 yards per play in a conference-only schedule last season, they were competitive. They won games over Cal and archrival Oregon and dropped one-score duels to Washington, Utah, and Stanford.
The 2021 roster is stacked, returning the seventh-most production, including the No. 5 offense. Oregon State has a savvy head coach in Jonathan Smith, who may have his team off to a 3-0 start with Purdue, Hawaii, and Idaho out of the gates.
Colorado's top 12 in the country in returning production, but it's a team I'm betting against this fall.
The Buffaloes' 150-1 odds were the longest to win the conference in 2020 and double that of the next-worst team (Oregon State, 75-1). The program somehow came away with a 4-2 record, despite getting out-gained by 0.5 yards per play and finishing with a minus-19 point differential.
Alex Kolodziej is a betting writer for theScore. He's a graduate of Eastern Illinois who has been involved in the sports betting industry for 12 years. He can quote every line from "Rounders" and appreciates franchises that regularly wear alternate jerseys. Find him on Twitter @AJKolodziej.