This could be a sad week for the Pac12 during which their depth will have been tested or a few teams could surprise and put the conference back on the playoff map.
The almost sure suicide mission for the week is Colorado daring to travel to Michigan to play Big Blue. On the other hand, the Buffs have put up a lot of points and yards and stuff and could surprise me which would set up one of the most important games in the season when they host Oregon next week. The elephant in the room is that they have slaughtered teams they should have slaughtered which is a new trick from their bag.
ASU is coming of a nice win and looking a little bit like they might be a factor in the south. They won’t get much more than a scrimmage from Texas-San Antonio but that might be just what they need.
UCLA is the third Pac12 team BYU has faced. They won one on a last second Field goal and made the more guts than brains decision to go for a two-point conversion and a last second win rather than an extra point and overtime opportunity in the other. Opportunity never knocked as they failed badly vs Utah. UCLA is not the match-up they should want for the rubber game. Rosen hasn’t exactly impressed me but he leads the first real offense the Cougars will face this year. UCLA should win by at least a touchdown and deny BYU a last second decision play. The bruins may be playing in the conference championship this year.
To do that they’ll have to beat USC who I expect to give them their first step in that direction by embarrassing themselves in Palo Alto against a solid Stanford team. I don’t expect it to be a close game.
Washington state is going to sneak into the win column when as they tussle with mighty Idaho. What could have been season two of a rise to relevance has started out with two stumbles so I’m not expecting the Cougs to play in a bowl game this year.
Oregon State, Washington and Utah are three more teams not being tested this week as they take on Idaho, Portland State and San Jose State respectively. A loss by any of them will be hard to fathom.
Speaking of surprises Cal is going to lay a big one on me if they beat Texas who handled Notre Dame to signal they might be a real team. The bears haven’t done that yet and won’t this weekend.
It’s Hard to call Hawaii as they play Arizona with both teams looking weak. I suspect the Rainbow warriors will continue to forget what they are doing vs what they should be doing and hand Arizona a win, but the Cat’s might turn it down. Not great before Solomon got injured, Arizona is still searching to figure it all out.
Finishing it off is Oregon visiting Nebraska. Betters have Nebraska as a three-point favorite, but I have three points indicating there might be a better way to bet. First, Nebraska is coached by Mike Riley who has spent quite a few years failing to beat an Oregon squad. Second is Nebraska is a member of the Big10ish where non-conference games are often an adventure. Third, the Huskers are an unrated team facing a rated one. While none of those are solid reasons, together they will find the strength to produce a two touchdown or more win for the Ducks.
Of course if I were a Nebraska fan I’d say first, Oregon has not proven it can defend against the run. Second, Oregon has not proven it can defend the pass yet and third The Cornhuskers lost a lot of very close games last year and should win a lot more games this season.
Neither concoction of addled reason means much so I’ll still predict a solid win for Oregon.