Week 3 was unkind to the Pac-12 South. USC, which jumped to the early lead of the Pac-12 race with its win at Stanford, had circles run around it by Boston College. Arizona State and UCLA both won to extend their records to 3-0, but injuries to quarterbacks Taylor Kelly and Brett Hundley could take much longer lasting tolls on the 2014 season.
Hundley came out in the first quarter of UCLA’s 20-17 win over Texas. He sustained an elbow injury when awkwardly bracing himself on a run against the Longhorns. He tried to return, but was wrapped with ice in the second half and held out.
Hundley will have an MRI on Sunday.
#UCLA QB Brett Hundley to have MRI tomorrow on left elbow (non-throwing arm)
— Dane Brugler (@dpbrugler) September 14, 2014
Kelly came out of Arizona State’s 38-24 win over Colorado with an apparent ankle or lower leg injury. He returned to the sideline in a boot and on crutches.
— Joe Pequeno(@JoePequenoCBS5) September 14, 2014
Todd Graham offered no new information on Taylor Kelly, just said that he's out for tonight
— Paola Boivin(@PaolaBoivin) September 14, 2014
The Bruins and Sun Devils have bye weeks before squaring off on Sept. 25 in a Thursday night showcase of the Pac-12 South’s last two champions.
Kelly and Hundley’s respective recoveries obviously impact Arizona State and UCLA in the Pac-12 landscape, but also have significance for USC’s divisional title aspirations.
Boston College’s zone-read clinic against USC suggest the Trojans will continue to have trouble defending mobile quarterbacks. Kelly and Hundley both specifically gashed USC’s defense via the rush in 2013.
If either Kelly or Hundley is shelved for any significant duration, a door opens for either Arizona or Utah to sneak in. The Wildcats and Utes entered 2014 as possible X-factors in the wide-open division as is; with two of the South’s biggest stars potentially sidelined, the landscape alters dramatically.