Ryan Grubb and the fifth-ranked Washington Huskies are preparing for a hard-hitting Utah team on Saturday.

The 13th-ranked Utes travel to Husky Stadium looking to keep their Pac-12 title defense alive. They have two losses, but a win over the unbeaten Huskies would go a long way toward propelling the Utes back to Las Vegas.

And Utah is coming off a massive win at home last week against Arizona State. The program responded to a 35-6 home loss to Oregon by going out and blasting Arizona State 55-3. The Sun Devils were held under 100 yards of offense in the game.

“I think they’re the most physical defense we’ve seen,” Grubb said. “They’re the champs. That’s what we told the guys. You’re going out there to play the champs. They’re back-to-back Pac-12 champs, they’re a really well-coached football team.”

Washington beat Oregon 36-33 in Seattle on Oct. 14. UW put 415 yards on the Duck defense.

But that comment might not be as much a shot across the bow at Oregon as it is a simple compliment for Utah.

Consistency, Grubb pointed out, is a hallmark of the Utah program. That is particularly true on defense. Even this season, with injuries impacting so much of the two-deep, Utah has mostly kept to its standard of play.

There were poor showings against Oregon State and against Oregon, but Utah still leads the Pac-12 in scoring defense and ranks third in defensive efficiency. The Utes are giving up 4.9 yards a play, a mark that sits top-20 nationally as well.

“Those are the teams that have grooved reps and understand how to get ready for a good gameplan and go into a big game on the road,” Grubb said. “They’ll be ready for that and the test we’ll give them. But the guys are looking forward to it.”

Kickoff between the Huskies and the Utes is set for 12:30 p.m. PT on FOX.