Once again the Pac-12 continues to consume itself. This week in Pac-12 football, Pullman, Washington continues to prove to be a death sentence for ranked teams playing there. In the south, Utah picked up a big win over USC and look like the team to beat. The race to the Pac-12 championship game is heating up, and it will only intensify over the final four weeks of the season!
Washington State played spoiler this past weekend by defeating Oregon 34-20. The Cougars jumped out to a 27-0 lead at halftime in part because of the energy in stadium. The electric atmosphere and early score made it impossible for Oregon to execute their game plan. Despite the early deficit, Oregon was able to make it 27-20 late in fourth quarter, but a Washington State touchdown with 3:40 left in the game sealed the deal. Washington State is now tied with Stanford and Washington, and ahead of Oregon in the North. The two teams at the top of the North took care of business against teams in the South this week. Stanford beat ASU 20-13 on Thursday night and Washington defeated Colorado 27-13 on Saturday. In the battle for the bottom of the division, Cal whooped Oregon State 49-7. As a result, the Beavers are at the bottom of the conference.
Finally, there is some clarity in the Pac-12 South. Utah beat USC which means the Utes now control the Pac-12 South. After a slow start to the conference schedule, Utah is now 3-2 with wins over Stanford and USC. Their final game against Colorado is shaping up to possibly determine who the Pac-12 South winner will be. Speaking of Colorado they were once again beaten by a better team this week. After being undefeated, Colorado has dropped two in a row in conference play. ASU was beaten on Thursday night in an ugly game by the Stanford Cardinal. After an exciting start to the Herm Edward’s era, ASU has slowed down and now sit at the bottom the division. In Los Angeles, UCLA escaped an Arizona comeback attempt and won 31-30. For two bad teams, the game was exciting and back and forth even though both teams had back up quarterbacks playing.
Best Performance of the Week: Washington State Cougars
The Cougars had a big game on Saturday, and boy did they come to play. Gardner Minshew was impressive throwing for 323 yards and 4 touchdowns. Along with that, the Washington State defense forced two turnovers. As a result, the Cougars walked away with a 34-20 win; because of the win, Washington State’s hopes of claiming the Pac-12 North division remain alive.
Worst Performance of the Week: Oregon State Beavers
Oregon State was demolished by Cal this past weekend which gives us an idea of how bad the Beavers really are. The Beavers defense gave up over 500 yards of offense, along with only gaining 241 on offense. Both of these teams have not been good this season, but it was surprising to see Oregon State play this bad especially at home. Oregon State should already be planning for next season.
Upcoming Game of the Week: #13 Washington State at #24 Stanford
Coming off of their big win over Oregon, Washington State travels to Stanford in a battle for Pac-12 North supremacy. Both teams need a win to keep pace with Washington in the North. Both schools still have Washington on the schedule, meaning a win would go a long way towards being in a position to win the North.