Arizona and Washington take the week off with a five game, mid-day to well past dark slate of games on Saturday.
First a recap of last week’s results.
Friday, Nov 02
Arizona 42 – Colorado 34 (pick: Arizona 38-28)
Arizona quarterback Khalil Tate threw five touchdown passes and running back J.J. Taylor ran for 192 yards on 40 … forty … carries. Ralphie netted forty yard on the ground as the Buffs dropped their fourth straight game.
Saturday, Nov 03|
Washington 27 – Stanford 23 (pick: Stanford 33-24)
Washington opened up a three touchdown lead at the half then held off the Cardinal down the stretch to end any thoughts Stanford may have had at a northern division crown. Husky quarterback Jake Browning was an efficient 16 for 27 with a score. K.J. Costello nicked the Washington defense for 347 yards and a pair of TD’s but was picked three times. Myles Gaskin added 148 yards on the ground with 28 carries.
USC 38 – Oregon State 21 (pick: Oregon State 38-31)
Three quarters of the way through the Benny’s were within striking distance at 28 – 21 until a ten point Trojan fourth quarter settled the matter. Oregon State quarterback Jake Luton and six receivers combined for 301 yards passing but the USC defense held running back Jamar Jefferson to 58 yards on 18 carries. Trojan running backs Aca’Cedric Ware and Vavae Malepeai scorched the Beaver defense for a combined 306 yards and three touchdowns on 32 carries.
Arizona State 38 – Utah 20 (pick: Utah 35-27)
Leading 21-20 after three quarters, Arizona State exploded for 17 fourth quarter points to knock off the Utes in Tempe. It was a costly loss for the Utes who lost quarterback Tyler Huntley to a broken collarbone midway through the third quarter. ASU quarterback Manny Wilkins lit up the Utah defense for 285 yards and three touchdowns, completing 19 of 24 attempts. Eno Benjamin added 175 yards and two scores on 27 carries.
Washington State 19 – California 13 (pick: Washington State 42-18)
Justin Wilcox’s Bears held the high octane Washington State attack in check but couldn’t muster the offense to pull off the upset. Tied at 13 entering the fourth quarter, a pair of Cougar field goals was the difference down the stretch to keep Washington State in the northern division driver’s seat.
Oregon 42 – UCLA 21 (pick: Oregon 33-24)
Justin Herbert to Dillon Mitchell remains the key to Oregon’s success offensively, the pair connecting eight times for 156 yards and two touchdowns in Chip Kelly’s welcome back to Autzen. Using running backs by committee, the Ducks ran for 200 yards highlighted by Tony Brookes-James 54-yard bolt midway through the fourth quarter. Ugo Amadi got the festivities started early for the Ducks, taking a punt return 56-yards to the house after the Oregon defense forced a three and out on the Bruins first possession.
Saturday, Nov 10
Oregon State @ Stanford
Back-to-back losses to the Washington schools has Stanford if not in panic, in near desperation mode. Unlike many of David Shaw’s more successful teams down on the Farm, this year’s Cardinal has had little success running the football. Much of that has to do with the lingering ankle injury to running back Bryce Love. Quarterback K.J. Costello and receiver J.J. Arcega-Whiteside have shouldered the load as Shaw’s play book was forced to find yards through the air. Unfortunately for the Beavers pass defense has been an ongoing struggle this season and a Stanford team that feels it needs to prove itself is a dangerous team. Stanford 33-24.
California @ USC
The Golden Bears haven’t won in the Coliseum since before the Aaron Rodgers days and with the Trojans at least for the moment healthy at quarterback that trend is likely to continue. California’s defense has been impressive in their upset of Washington and in holding the Cougars to a season low 19 points last week. Offensively 12 points was enough to knock off the Huskies but 13 wasn’t enough against WSU and that’s the issue this week in LaLa Land – can they score enough to win. Probably not. USC 27-15.
UCLA @ Arizona State
The Sun Devils have been the ultimate up and down team. In four losses Arizona State couldn’t score more than 21 points in falling to San Diego State, Washington, Colorado and Stanford. Then they grabbed the inside track in the southern division putting 38 points on USC and Utah knocking out those two pretenders to the crown. Quarterback Manny Wilkins and receiver N’Keal Harry give ASU a home run threat on every snap and will probably have a field day against an young and beat up UCLA defense. ASU 38 – 21
Washington State @ Colorado
Colorado has been giving up points in bunches while losing four straight. Until Justin Wilcox and the Bears found a monkey wrench to throw in the works last week, Washington State has been putting points on the board in bunches. Expect a return to the norm in Boulder. Cougs 48-27
Oregon @ Utah
With no Tyler Huntley at quarterback or Zack Moss at running back, Utah will be missing the 1-2 punch that gave the Utes more ways to win a ball game than with just head coach Kyle Whittingham’s usual stingy defense. The pair combined for 3104 of Utah’s 3776 total yards of offense before suffering season ending injuries, Huntley in last week’s loss to Arizona State and Moss during this week of practice. As long as Oregon doesn’t turn the ball over and is able to remain mostly penalty free in what will still be a raucous Rice-Eccles Stadium, the Ducks fly home with a 38-17 road win.
~ Rick Morgan