Why ASU could become a force, Phil Fulmer’s extension and more

The final paragraph of last week’s Mailbag succeeded in lighting a fire under our friends from the West Coast, many of whom offered theories as to why “Pac-10 [Mailbag] submissions are so minimal it’s embarrassing” (I’ll share a couple of those later), others of whom took heed and fired off Pac-10 related questions.
I figured we’d start off with the most generalized, most obvious question possible involving that conference.
At some point, USC’s run at the top of the Pac-10 has to end. Who do you see as having the best chance to supplant the Trojans as the class of the best offensive conference in the country?
— Brian, Park City, Utah
Let me start by saying I do not foresee that happening beyond an occasional one-season blip for as long as Pete Carroll remains at USC. Short of crippling, Reggie Bush-related NCAA sanctions (highly unlikely), there’s no reason to think the nation’s elite blue-chippers won’t keep jumping on the Carroll bandwagon (after watching a day of the Trojans’ typically charged team meetings and practice this spring, I wanted to suit up, too), or that he and his staff won’t keep coaching them up.