In a bid to enhance their College Football Playoff (CFP) prospects, the 2023 UCLA Bruins football team, boasting a 4-1 record, presently stands fifth in the fiercely competitive Pac-12 conference. Their upcoming Week 6 matchup against Oregon State holds the key to their playoff ambitions, with Fox Sports’ Joel Klatt suggesting that an upset victory against the 15th-ranked Beavers could significantly bolster their chances.
- UCLA Bruins are currently ranked fifth in the Pac-12 conference.
- An upset win against Oregon State could improve their CFP chances, as noted by Joel Klatt.
- Several Pac-12 rivals, including Washington Huskies, Oregon Ducks, USC Trojans, and Utah Utes, currently outpace the Bruins in both the AP Top 25 and the Pac-12 standings.
Chip Kelly’s squad faced early setbacks, largely due to their loss to Utah, contributing to their lower rank compared to conference peers. However, they bounced back into the Top 25 with an upset victory over Washington State in the previous weekend’s thrilling showdown.
The 2023 season holds special significance for the Pac-12 as it marks the conference’s final year. This yearning to bid farewell in style has ignited stiff competition among all the teams in the conference. With seven Pac-12 teams currently ranked in the top 20, the competition will provide the playoff committee voters with ample evidence of the conference’s strength.
“If they can get past Oregon State this week in Corvallis, all of the sudden their schedule is way easier than the rest of the Pac-12,” Klatt said. “They could absolutely beat SC. I think that the toughest remaining game for UCLA is this weekend. If UCLA wins this weekend, watch out. … If they go to Vegas and beat this week’s winner (in) Oregon-Washington — let’s say one of those teams goes — and they go in there and beat them, UCLA’s going to the Playoff. Now it’s about can your quarterback get better? Can your run game get continue to get better? Chip Kelly has quietly built something very good.”
(h/t to Derek Peterson of Saturday Out West for the transcription)
Joel Klatt, the well-respected Fox Sports analyst, believes that a series of upset victories within the conference could propel UCLA into the college football’s prestigious final four, ultimately culminating in a shot at the national championship in January. The Bruins’ journey towards this goal commences with the critical clash against Oregon State this weekend.
In a season where every game counts, the Bruins find themselves at a crossroads. A victory against Oregon State could not only elevate their ranking within the Pac-12 but also set them on a path towards playoff contention. Chip Kelly and his determined squad understand the significance of this matchup and are prepared to leave no stone unturned as they seek to carve their name into the annals of college football history. UCLA fans will be eagerly watching as the Bruins aim to make a statement in the weeks to come.
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