NCAA Football

Pac-12 Power Rankings: It’s a competitively mediocre conference

The Pac-12 this weekend had an opportunity for the top half of the conference to separate itself, instead several of the top teams fell into the muddled middle. There was No. 25 Washington State’s loss to Arizona, and Oregon’s beat down of Utah that kept the conference close together.

Whatever talk there had been about Utah being ready for serious contention in the Pac-12 this season was clearly overrated as the Utes were stopped by a Ducks offense that has struggled against any quarterback with a pulse. But Oregon did a good job of limiting Tyler Huntley’s production — the quarterback averaged 6.8 yards per completion — which stifled the Utes’ offensive production. It was a disappointing game for Huntley that firmly put Utah out of the Pac-12 South race.

As for Oregon, the Ducks picked up their fifth win of the season thanks to their running game; the running game racked up 347 yards on 49 carries. Braxton Burmeister only passed for 47 yards while completing seven of 12 pass attempts. 

1) Stanford Cardinal (– spots): Stanford survived a scary Thursday night trip to Corvallis with a 15-14 win. 

2) Washington Huskies (+1): On homecoming weekend the Huskies picked up a dominant win over UCLA on Saturday. Jake Browning didn’t look that good, but Washington’s defense was dominant enough to pick-up the win.

3) USC Trojans (+1): The Trojans bounced back from their embarrassing loss last week by knocking around ASU. Southern California’s offense finally looked consistently explosive during the rout. 

4) Arizona Wildcats (+1): Khalil Tate may have gotten the headlines during Arizona’s upset win over Washington State on Saturday, but JJ Taylor looked outright dominant at times against the Cougars.

5) Washington State Cougars (-3): The Cougars’ defense failed to contain Zona’s backfield on Saturday night. It was a disasterous performance by the Speed D that almost covers up the fact that Luke Falk was benched.

6) Colorado Buffaloes (+3): After a rough October, Colorado finally won a conference game by more than one possession. Steven Montez picked apart the Golden Bears as he tossed three touchdowns while averaging 13.3 yards per attempt.

7) UCLA Bruins (-1): The worst run defense in the country was torched by Washington’s aggressive rushing attack, while the Bruins offense remained ineffective.

8) Arizona State Sun Devils (-1): ASU’s defense couldn’t stop the Trojans, while its offense struggled to stretch the field against USC’s secondary. That’s a recipe for disaster, which is exactly what Todd Graham’s squad got.

9) Oregon Ducks (+2): Oregon put together its most complete performance of the season with their rout of Utah. It was a good win and now the Ducks are only one game away from bowl eligibility. 

10) Utah Utes (-2): The loss to Oregon put an end to any hopes the Utes may have had about winning their division. Utah’s season is now about getting back to a bowl game.

11) California Golden Bears (-1): Cal looked over matched against Colorado as the Buffs were able to do whatever they wanted through the air. At least Ross Bowers looked competent again.

12) Oregon State Beavers (-): For the second straight game, Oregon State took its for right to the wire…but couldn’t pull it off in the end.

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