top of page

WestCoastCFB Pac-12 Awards for 2020

Best team, moment, players and more from the 2020-21 Pac-12 football season.

Photo: John McGillen (USC Athletics)

Article by Christopher Caravello

While the Pac 12 certainly wishes it could have been given a chance to place a representative in the playoff, the reality was that the league lacked an elite team that could defy the optics of a shortened season, one that started later than any of the other Power 5 conferences. This in no way should detract from the unprecedented sacrifices that the players in this conference had to make in order to play this season. Teams tried to mitigate the circumstances placed on them due to the pandemic and local health regulations, and it seemed as though every kickoff that occurred was a miracle of sorts. In the end the Oregon Ducks took advantage of the opportunity to defend their Pac 12 championship, and several other teams should be heading into the offseason with a sense of optimism about what they should be able to accomplish with a less-restrictive spring practice plan in preparation for a full 2021 season.

Team of the Year: Oregon

While it didn’t go smoothly this season in Eugene, at the end of the day the Ducks are champions of the Pac-12 again after holding off USC in Los Angeles. The preseason favorites to win the conference were able to do just enough on defense to stymie USC in the conference title game just days after learning head coach Mario Cristobal would be getting a contract extension amid rumors of Auburn courting him. It wasn’t the road they anticipated having to navigate but finishing the season with another Pac-12 championship and 2nd straight New Year’s 6 bowl game appearance should encourage Oregon fans looking towards 2021.

Play of the Year: Jamal Hill INT (Ore)

The play that sealed a conference championship. With 2:47 between USC and yet another improbable comeback, Kedon Slovis failed to find anyone open downfield. Instead of safely throwing the ball into the stands, he fired a pass along the sideline close enough for Oregon safety Jamal Hill to leap and get his outstretched hands onto the ball. While the play was an incredible display of athleticism by Hill, the refs initially ruled it as an incomplete pass. Camera replays showed Hill with one foot still in bounds as he hauled in the pass, as Slovis could only stare on in disbelief. Instead of driving to win their 4th comeback game of the season, USC let the conference championship trophy slip away to the Oregon Ducks largely because of Hill and his incredible interception.

Game of the Year: Stanford vs UCLA

In a fitting end to regular season, the Pac 12 treated fans to one of the most dramatic back and forth affairs of 2020. After roaring out to a 3-score lead at halftime, Stanford appeared to be on its way to winning its 3rd straight game away from Palo Alto. Chase Griffin entered the game in relief at QB, and the Bruins began to turn the game around as they ripped off 31 unanswered points. Finally, Davis Mills marched the Cardinal down the field to stop the bleeding and get Stanford within a touchdown as the time began to become a huge factor. With under 2 minutes left in the game, UCLA fumbled a handoff and gave Stanford one last chance to end this season on a high note. Davis Mills did not let that opportunity go to waste and with 18 seconds left in the game, found one of the Pac 12’s most dangerous weapons in Simi Fehoko for the tying TD. After trading touchdowns in the first overtime period, it appeared as though Stanford had the comeback complete after another scintillating TD reception by Fehoko in the 2nd OT. Facing 4th and 18, Griffin hit Kyle Phillips for a 21 yard TD and set the stage for the game's dramatic ending.

Position Unit of the Year: Washington Secondary

Although they were only able to showcase their defensive skills in 4 games this season, the Huskies

made it clear that their secondary continues to be one of the best units in the conference. While holding opponents to 185 yards passing per game and picking off 3 passes, UW was led by NFL-bound Elijah Molden and standout sophomore Trent McDuffie to form another elite secondary in Seattle.

Coach of the Year: Kyle Whittingham (Utah HC)

Rebuilding a Utes team that had appeared in back-to-back Pac-12 title games was daunting enough with the departure of 7 NFL draft picks. Then a COVID-19 outbreak caused Utah to become the last team to start its season in 2020. When head coach Kyle Whittingham saw his team sputter out of the gates at 0-2, he could have used either of the above excuses to write off this strange season. Instead, Coach Whittingham showed his tremendous leadership abilities in righting the ship and guiding the Utes to 3 straight victories to close out the year, including a season ending win over Wazzu that saw them erase a 21 point deficit in the 2nd half.

Offensive Player of the Year: Jarek Broussard (CU)

Jarek Broussard was a work horse for the Buffs while leading the Pac-12 in total yards from scrimmage with 960. The emergence of Broussard led to a special season for Colorado as they found themselves in the Alamo Bowl. Broussard's top performance came when he rushed for 301 yards against Arizona on December 5th.

Defensive Player of the Year: Talanoa Hufanga (USC)

Talanoa Hufanga was a dynamic playmaker for the Trojans all season while racking up 62 tackles, 5.5 TFL, 3 sacks and 4 interceptions.

WestCoastCFB Offensive Team of the Year

1st Team Offense:

QB: Kedon Slovis (USC)

RB: Jarek Broussard (CU)

RB: Jermar Jefferson (OSU)

WR: Simi Fehoko (Stan)

WR: Drake London (USC)

WR: Amon-Ra St. Brown (USC)

TE: Greg Dulcich (UCLA)

OL: Alijah Vera-Tucker (USC)

OL: Jaxson Kirkland (UW)

OL: Abe Lucas (WSU)

OL: Drew Dalman (Stan)

OL: Kellen Diesch (ASU)

2nd Team Offense:

QB: Davis Mills (Stan)

RB: Demetric Felton (UCLA)

RB: Ty Jordan (Utah)

WR: Tyler Vaughns (USC)

WR: Travell Harris (WSU)

WR: Kyle Phillips (UCLA)

TE: Cade Otton (UW)

OL: Dohnovan West (ASU)

OL: Alex Forsyth (Ore)

OL: Victor Curne (UW)

OL: Henry Bainivalu (UW)

OL: William Sherman (CU)

WestCoastCFB Defensive Team of the Year:

1st Team Defense:

DL: Jermayne Lole (ASU)

DL: Kayvon Thibodeaux (Ore)

DL/Edge: Carson Wells (CU))

DL/Edge: ZTF (UW)

LB: Edefuan Ulofoshio (UW)

LB: Nate Landman (CU)

LB: Devin Lloyd (Utah)

DB: Trent McDuffie (UW)

DB: Talanoa Hufanga (USC)

DB: Elijah Molden (UW)

DB Chase Lucas (ASU)

2nd Team Defense:

DL: Osa Odighizuwa (UCLA)

DL: Mustafa Johnson (CU)

DL: Marlon Tuipulotu (USC)

DL: Mika Tafua (Utah)

LB: Mitchell Agude (UCLA)

LB: Avery Roberts (OSU)

LB: Cameron Goode (Cal)

DB: Olaijah Griffin (USC)

DB: Mekhi Blackmon (CU)

DB: Mykael Wright (Ore)

DB: Camryn Bynum (Cal)

WestCoastCFB Specialists of the Year:

K: Jadon Redding (Utah)

P: Michael Turk (ASU)

Returner: DJ Taylor (ASU)

bottom of page