The Washington Huskies Football Team aims to return to the NCAA Playoffs in 2017. But can the team get there undefeated?
The 2016 Washington Huskies Football Team suffered one loss in the regular season, a heartbreaking loss to the visiting 6-3 USC Trojans. That loss was the only blemish on the team’s stellar record heading into the Chik-Fil-A Peach Bowl.
But the team was not at full strength. The team’s leading sacker, JoJo Mathis, was out for the season after six games due to a foot injury. Linebacker Azeem Victor, fell to injury after nine games. The team endured the USC contest down two productive starters on the defense. (per fan response, clarifying Victor was injured vs. USC before recording any tackles)
Is 11-1 Too Optimistic?
Now the Washington Huskies must restock the lineups, synchronize their timing, and get ready for an entirely new season. And in doing so, must prepare for another season of hard fought football. Based on our early projections, this team will find success again this year.
Now, the presumption of that analysis is that the team would go lose a game this season, and end up at 11-1 for the 2017 season. Of course, that could be overly optimistic. With the team on the rebuild in the defensive backfield, there is the risk of an early season loss. And of course, the same injury bug which plagued the team last season could reek havoc on the team this season as well.
Is 11-1 Too Pessimistic?
On that same count, could this team which dominated the PAC-12 last year has virtually it’s entire offense intact. And while the defensive backfield is reassembling this season, the team’s injuries at linebacker and defensive end called into service the second tier of players. Those players experienced NCAA playoffs last year, and bring all that knowledge and newfound maturity to the new season.
There are several close games in the 2017 season. Games that by the nature of the schedule, could pose challenges as “trap” games. Some contests match the Huskies against highly regarded teams. But if the Washington Huskies defeat the Stanford Cardinals on the road, they have a solid chance of an undefeated season.
It’s worth keeping in the back of your mind. This team has a nearly intact offense, and the defense is strong in depth.