Nov 10, 2012; Seattle, WA, USA; Washington Huskies quarterback Keith Price (17) talks with wide receiver Kasen Williams (2) prior to the game against the Utah Utes at CenturyLink Field. Mandatory Credit: Steven Bisig-USA TODAY Sports

Pac-12 Football Preview: North No. 3 Washington Huskies

Nov. 23, 2012; Pullman, WA, USA; Washington Huskies running back Bishop Sankey (25) runs against the Washington State Cougars during the second half at Martin Stadium. The Cougars would go onto beat the Huskies by a final score of 31-28 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: James Snook-USA TODAY Sports

Pac-12 Season Preview Series

North:

4. Oregon State

5. California

6. Washington State

South:

1. Arizona State

2. USC

3. UCLA

4. Arizona

5. Utah

6. Colorado

2012 record: 7-6 (5-4 Pac-12)

Key returnees: RB Bishop Sankey, TE Austin Seferian-Jenkins, LB Shaq Thompson, WR Kasen Williams

Key departures: LB Nate Fellner, DB Justin Glenn, C Drew Schaefer, CB Desmond Trufant

Key additions: WR Darrell Daniels (Freedom HS/Oakley, Calif.), DT Elijah Qualls (Casa Grande HS/Petaluma, Calif.), WR Damore’ea Stringfellow (Rancho Verde HS/Moreno Valley, Calif.)

2012 season recap:

After Keith Price’s sensational sophomore campaign, expectations were through the roof for the always-gleaming signal caller in 2012. He was going to lead the Huskies to a breakthrough season. No more seven wins; we’re talking eight, nine, ten wins and a major bowl. Now, as we’re sitting here saying the exact same things before this season, we know that didn’t happen.

A lot of good things did happen in 2012 that made up a down year from Price. Bishop Sankey took over full time duties at running back because both Jesse Callier and Deontae Cooper were out for the season. He emerged as one of the elite runners in the Pac-12, even running behind a broken offensive line that affected Price’s play. Austin Seferian-Jenkins put up the best numbers of all the tight ends in the country. The defense went from one of the league’s worst under Nick Holt to one of its best in Justin Wilcox’s first season.

2013 season preview:

Everything good that happened last season is back for this season. That’s why this season is different. Yes, expectations are equally high, if not higher, but the team is more capable to meet them. If Price bounces back like he continues to insist that he will, then this is a team that will challenge for a Pac-12 title. Not can. Will.

It all starts in a brand new Husky Stadium on August 31 against Boise State. That will be the measuring stick for the Huskies this season. Come out flat and there’s a chance they never recover. Facing Stanford, Oregon and Arizona State back-to-back-to-back will be difficult, but not impossible. I imagine the Huskies will be pretty motivated not to let their losing streak to the Ducks reach double digits. The schedule is favorable. They miss USC and see all three of WSU, Cal and Colorado. Third place and a good bowl game will be considered a successful season and guarantee Steve Sarkisian another year to get UW to a Rose Bowl.

2013 predicted finish: 9-3 (6-3 Pac-12), third in the Pac-12 North

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