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So, what's your prediction for Thursday?

Win or lose, what do you think will happen?

Christian Petersen - Getty Images

We've pretty much exhausted our feelings on this game ... so, why not exhaust them a bit more?!?

On the eve of the big game, well what was supposed to be the big game, anyway, Utah fans are a bit gun-shy. That should be expected, considering their last conference outing. Still, I believe in this team because, well, what else is there? No, I don't feel like we're going to win ... but I've got a good feeling about Thursday. Figure that one out. I guess maybe it means I feel like we're due for a competitive loss, if nothing else.

Would that be acceptable? If Utah lost by, say, ten points, would you feel better about this team and season? I would. Obviously you strive for victory and it's hogwash to buy into moral wins, but with how things have slipped in two of their last three games, gradual progress should still be considered progress.

So, what do you think will happen?

My guess...

Utah is within a score entering the fourth quarter. I get the sense this game will probably play out like the Arizona State game last year ... with Utah in striking distance, or leading, heading into the fourth. I hope the outcome isn't the same, obviously, but I don't believe the Utes will be blown off the field from the start like we saw a week and a half ago.

I want this one badly. It's not that I hate USC, but there is no question they're the premier program in the Pac-12 South and one of the most storied programs in the country. In the last four years, Utah has defeated Michigan and Alabama and it would be nice to add a relevant USC to that list (no, USC in '01 was not relevant enough to warrant greatness ranking ... though, it's still a fantastic win for the program).

Maybe I'm overestimating Utah's ability by even suggesting victory. But as negative as I can get, in the end, I almost always come around to the idea the Utes can somehow defy the odds and win. Right now, the odds put them as roughly a fourteen-point underdog. I'm pretty surprised it's that low ... but then again, being two score dogs on your home field generally doesn't bode well.

Here's to Utah proving everyone wrong and pulling off a stunner.

I ... believe?