Are Utah Utes the most likely non-SEC Power Five team to repeat as conference champion?

FILE — Utah Utes players celebrate after they beat the Oregon Ducks in the Pac-12 championship game at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas on Friday, Dec. 3, 2021. Are the Utes the most likely non-SEC Power Five program to repeat as conference champions in 2022?

Spenser Heaps, Deseret News

The Utah football program is receiving plenty of attention leading into the 2022 season, as the reigning Pac-12 champion is seen by some as a dark horse College Football Playoff candidate.

It’s a compelling argument, with the Utes coming off the program’s first Pac-12 title and first appearance in the Rose Bowl.

Can Utah repeat its 2021 Pac-12 superiority in 2022?

During a recent episode of the “Late Kick” podcast, college football expert Josh Pate was asked, of the four non-SEC Power Five reigning conference champions, which one is most likely to repeat?

Pate chose defending Pac-12 champion Utah ahead of the Big Ten’s Michigan (which he picked second-most likely to repeat), the ACC’s Pittsburgh (third) and the Big 12’s Baylor (fourth).

Why are the Utah Utes a favorite to repeat as Pac-12 champions?

Pate pointed to a few things that make the Utes a compelling repeat champion.

Utah returns 67% of its production from the 2021 season, according to the latest numbers from ESPN’s Bill Connelly, which ranks 49th nationally. That’s ahead of Michigan (65%, 65th) and Baylor (47%, 122nd), and …read more

Source:: Deseret News – Sports News

      

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