A loss to Washington on Thursday would have no impact on USC’s bid for second place in the Pacific-10 Conference. The Trojans will get second if Washington State loses to UCLA on Thursday and USC beats the Cougars on Saturday. Then, even with a Washington loss, the teams would be tied at 12-6 in conference play and would have split their series. The tiebreaker would be better record against the conference’s top teams, and USC would win based on being 2-0 against Oregon.
However, a loss to the Huskies likely would impact USC’s NCAA Tournament seeding, so the Trojans do have reason to play their hardest.