Hello there, and welcome to the first week of the Good Guys Pac-12 power rankings! These aren’t really going to be true power rankings though, because everyone does those and they never really change from week to week. Instead, I’m going to rank teams based on who had the best week.
As such, this will mostly be a ranking of who had the weekend’s best wins to worst losses. It has no bearing on who is the best overall team. I repeat, these are not rankings of which team is the best. Looking ahead, UW is number one on the list, because they demolished a ranked team. I don’t think they’re the best team in the conference, but they easily had the best win. All clear?
Stanford and Arizona State didn’t play, so I’m leaving them off. That will be the case for most teams with byes throughout the year, unless something terrible or great happens to them during practice. Not likely, but players get hurt during practice or arrested in Eugene. Things happen. On to the rankings!
1. Washington Huskies
No team made more of a statement than the Huskies. Whether or not Boise State is a bit down this year, they were maybe the best opponent of any Pac-12 team this weekend. The Huskies disposed of them with little mercy. It was a dominating win for a program that needed one.
2. UCLA Bruins
It gets a little harder to distinguish at this point. Nevada’s a decent team and UCLA whupped them 58-20. I’m giving them bonus blowout points to bump them ahead of a couple of other teams.
3. Colorado Buffaloes
Colorado beat Colorado State 41-27. CSU isn’t very good, but if you remember 2012, the Buffs didn’t win too many games. One, to be exact. They also lost to CSU to start last year, so this is a big improvement. By all accounts, Colorado looked greatly improved, and for a program in need of some hope, this is a big win.
4. Utah Utes
This is similar to Colorado, in that Utah beat their state school rival, Utah St. 30-26, after losing to them last year. USU is better than CSU, but Utah is better than Colorado, so I’m not super-impressed by this win. On a positive note, QB Travis Wilson looked much better than last year. Not so positive: the defense is missing some guys and they only beat Utah St. by 4 at home. Utah might be better than last year, but I don’t think they’re too good yet.
5. Tie- Oregon Ducks & Arizona Wildcats
Both schools beat cupcakes by about what was expected. Some Oregon fans are a little dissatisfied by what they saw Saturday, but they still won by 63 points. Arizona got the shutout and a solid performance from a new quarterback. Not a lot can be taken from either of these games, but they won, which is more than can be said for some schools (hear’s looking at you, Beavers!).
7. California Golden Bears
Cal lost, but they gave #22 Northwestern a run for their money. Most encouraging was true freshman QB Jared Goff throwing for a billion yards. Cal has some talent. They’re one of the more intriguing teams to watch this season.
8. Washington State Cougars
This is another moral victory ranking, as WSU nearly pulled off the upset at Auburn before falling 31-24. Now, Auburn’s not very good, and Connor Halliday is still throwing interceptions. At the same time, the Cougars are clearly getting better. A year or two ago, they would have lost by 40. Still, a loss is a loss.
9. USC Trojans
I should probably have the Trojans higher, since they did win at Hawaii 30-13. I’m not going to do that though, because they didn’t look very good and Lane Kiffin annoys me. Just pick a quarterback already! If one of them doesn’t play well, then change. There’s not much to gain with this little run-around game he’s playing. His quarterbacks have to be hating it, and it just makes Kiffin look even dumber than usual. They’ve got a scary defense though, and plenty of offensive talent, especially once Silas Redd comes back.
10. Oregon State Beavers
Oh, Beavers. You did what so many before you have narrowly avoided and lost to Eastern Washington. The Eagles are good, but a Pac-12 team in the top 25 can’t be losing to them. The last time the Beavers opened a season this way was all of two years ago (loss to Sacramento St.), and they ended that season 3-9. There’s plenty of offensive talent, but the Beaver defenders are going to have to figure some things out. I love Mike Riley, but he has his work cut out for him to get this straightened out.
If you disagree with me or think this is the most brilliant combination of words you’ve ever seen, let me know in the comments. See you next week!