BY Jordan Bianucci, Brice Larson & Bill Riley
It wasn’t exactly a wild week in the Pac-12, though the conference may be even deeper than we thought. Arizona gave Washington a scare, and after hanging with USC last week, the Sun Devils lost to Cal. Also: DaBaby? So let’s get into it.
The dreaded letdown struck the Huskies after last week’s wallop of Cal. However, UW was facing Arizona so they won by a touchdown anyway, doing just enough to remain at the top of my rankings. With a bye this week, the Huskies have two weeks to prepare for Oregon.
The Ducks took their no-frills, blue-collar brand of football to the farm and beat up on Stanford. Remember, according to Dan Lanning Oregon is all substance and no flash. We’re talking old-school football. At halftime Oregon players are allowed a pack of Marlboro Reds and a salt tablet. On an unrelated note, the Ducks donned their eight-seven millionth uniform combination vs. the Cardinal.
SC’s porous defense allowed 20 unanswered points late in the game but the Trojans held on to beat Coach Prime and the Buffs. I missed the first half of this game because it started at 10 am, a time usually reserved for eight and under rec league soccer games.
4. Washington State
The Cougs are ranked 13th in the country and should cruise past their next two opponents, UCLA and Arizona. That would set up a possible top-ten matchup with Oregon. It’s hard to imagine anyone besides Duck fans (ok, Huskie fans as well) not rooting for Wazzu; a team that is being left orphaned so the rich can get richer.
5. Oregon State
The Beavs gave Utah their first loss of the season and while the the Utes are banged up to say the least, Oregon State still dominated the then 11th ranked team in the nation.
The Utes dropped four spots in my poll this week because we finally saw who the Utes are without many of their first and second-string guys. Utah has two weeks to get right as they have a much needed bye before taking on Cal in Salt Lake City—a game they should be able to win without Cam Rising, though nothing is a given at this point. After that, it’s USC at the Coliseum and the Utes can’t afford a second conference loss if they want to repeat as Pac-12 champs.
CU nearly came back to beat USC. What’s more interesting, Colorado invited DaBaby to give a pregame speech to the Buffs, because when it comes to the most inspiring orators of all-time, three names come to mind: JFK, Martin Luther King Jr., and DaBaby.
The Wildcats gave Washington a slight scare in Tucson, which means if they compete with USC this week, the Wildcats may break my top seven. The powers that be may just flex this game into primetime.
The Bruins didn’t play this week or maybe they did. Like most Bruin fans I don’t care either way.
California pulled out a victory over Arizona State although not a single person saw this game so we’re taking the Bears’ word for it.
11. Arizona State
Arizona State came up short in Berkeley but Head Coach Kenny Dillingham said he was proud of his team for even participating in the game after a pregame encounter with Cal’s mascot Oski left them almost “too disturbed to take the field.”
Including this season, the Cardinal have won just three conference games in the last three years. How bad is it in Palo Alto? A San Francisco Chronicle columnist is suggesting they drop the program.