The first week of college football is done and over with. That’s kind of sad when you think about it, but there’s no time to reflect because we must press on. Before I move on to telling you dumb things about the rest of the Pac-12, I’ll cover just a few Husky notes. The expected news broke today that Jesse Callier and Hau’oli Jamora will be out for the rest of the season. Callier is a blow and the running back depth is very low. He was the guy with the most experience back there and one of the most talented. The true freshman, Erich Wilson, will now be the second running back and I expect him to play pretty well (he did in the opener). He could have an impact that Callier did his freshman year. The Jamora news was expected, but it’s too bad for the young man. Also, tonight Sark admitted on the radio show that he kept the offense vanilla for the opener. He said they have other running plays in their back pocket that they think will be ran effectively. I truly think you’ll see a different offense this week. Of course, the opponent is a very stiff test. Anyway, on to the rest of the Pac-12!
Arizona – Beat Toledo 24-17 OT – Coming Up: vs. Oklahoma State
Arizona’s game against Toledo wasn’t an over-inspiring opener for Rich Rodriguez. They did gain a ton of yards and would have scored a bunch of points if it weren’t for turnovers. This week, they play a team who just scored 379 points in one game (not really). Oklahoma State will test the Arizona defense and probably over-match them. The Cowboys have beat Arizona 73-24 over their last two years of playing. Good luck, Rich Rod! I can’t believe I haven’t called him that yet.
Arizona State – Beat Northern Arizona 63-6 – Coming Up: vs. Illinois
The Sun Devils played spoiler to Northern Arizona’s dreams of a perfect season. That’s a ridiculous thing to say but I bet the Northern Arizona players were dreaming of a perfect season, so stop being so disrespectful. A much stiffer test come this against Illinois. No, Illinois isn’t a top 25 team but they are a mediocre Big-10 team who could challenge for a bowl. We could learn more about Arizona State this week! Unless we don’t watch or read about them. It’s hard to learn about something without observation.
California – Lost to Nevada 24-31 – Coming Up: vs. Southern Utah
This was probably the Pac-12′s worst loss of the week. I didn’t think the Golden Bears would lose and I expected them to be in the upper-echelon of the conference. This could be a blip on the radar or it could be the beginning of the end of Jeff Tedford. This week they play Southern Utah. Southern Utah’s mascot is the Thunderbird. Cal will probably drop their wrath on the Thunderbirds. This is because Southern Utah is bad, not because a Thunderbird isn’t powerful. They sound very powerful.
Colorado – Lost to Colorado State 22-17 – Coming Up: vs. Sacramento State
Colorado had the other bad loss for the conference this week. No one expected them to be good, so it’s not surprising but it doesn’t help the Pac-12′s reputation. This week they play Sacramento State. I would make some remark about Sacramento State but they beat Oregon State last year so they’ve earned some respect. Still, this shouldn’t be much of a game as Sac. State lost to New Mexico State 49-19 last Thursday.
Oregon – Beat Arkansas State 57-34 – Coming Up: vs. Fresno State
If you hadn’t already heard this score, you’d probably think, “Wow! That’s a lot of points Oregon gave up!” It’s true that they gave up a lot of points but they were also ahead 50-3 midway through the second quarter. Good for Chip Kelly to not be like Oklahoma State and score 522 points (they didn’t really score that many). Although it is a little strange that the Duck’s backups gave up that many points. I still wouldn’t really look far into that. This week the dreadful team from Eugene continues it’s non-conference gauntlet against a mediocre at best Fresno State team. At least we’ll get to find out more about Oregon’s backups these first few weeks!
Oregon State – Postponed vs. Nicholls State – Coming Up: vs. Wisconsin
It’s amazing how quickly something can change your perception on a game. For some reason I thought that the Beavers played at Wisconsin this week. I didn’t give them a chance. Once I looked it up and saw that wasn’t the case I thought that an upset could occur. Wisconsin is a very good team who should beat Oregon State but that’s a tough place to play. Unfortunately for the Beavers, they weren’t able to get the kinks out last week because their game was postponed. An upset would be a stretch, but I’m guessing that this game might be a little closer than people think. I’m usually wrong though, so sorry Beaver fans. Some of you seem nice and I don’t mean to ruin your chances.
Stanford – Beat San Jose State 20-17 – Coming Up: vs. Duke
If you’re feeling bad about the Huskies opener, I suggest you look to northern California to feel bad. The Golden Bears lost to a team from Nevada, which shouldn’t happen and the Trees had to do everything in their might to beat a state team from a city. If you can make sense of that sentence, congratulations. Stanford looked bad in their opener. Maybe worse than everyone aside from Wazzu. I don’t expect them to be bad going forward and I think that if you survive the first week you should celebrate. Still, they have some major question marks and didn’t look like the physical team we’d grown accustomed to. This week they face off against Duke in a battle of very smart football players.
UCLA – Beat Rice 49-24 – Coming Up: vs. Nebraska
Of all the Pac-12 teams, UCLA might have had the most impressive opener. They went on the road and beat a team by 25 points. That’s not an easy thing to do, even if that team was the Rice Owls. This week they face a much stiffer test, because they’ll be sore. Wait, that’s not right. They’ll face a much stiffer test in opponent in Nebraska. I have my doubts about the Bruins putting up another 49 points against Nebraska but I don’t think a win is out of the question. UCLA has been known to surprise in their non-conference schedule. Plus, I’d take a Bruin over a Cornhusker any day.
USC – Beat Hawaii 49-10 – Coming Up: at Syracuse
USC’s first offensive play of the season was a touchdown. There will be many more of those plays coming. The Trojans are very good and look to improve as they face Syracuse in New Jersey this Saturday. This shouldn’t be much of a game, as Syracuse is about the same kind of team as Hawaii (that being mediocre). I’ve heard that Matt Barkley will stay and play for the New York Jets on Sunday, as well. Take that Tebow and Mark Sanchez fans! Are there any Mark Sanchez fans?
Utah – Beat Northern Colorado 41-0 – Coming Up: at Utah State (Friday)
Utah beat a bad team. This week they’ll play a slightly better team and will probably win, but by fewer points. How’s that for analysis? Some team’s pre-season’s just aren’t fun. I’d rather see my school play against one really good team (or at least a unique team) than a whole bunch of uninteresting team. I’ll see how I feel about this thought after LSU injures every single starting player the Huskies have.
WSU – Lost to BYU 30-6 – Coming Up: Eastern Washington
Wow, the Cougars looked bad. I didn’t expect them to have such a difficult time scoring. If the team plays like that for the rest of the season, Jeff Tuel will be injured and they’ll only win 3 or 4 games. This game is one that they will win. They should have no problem with Eastern Washington, although we’ve seen bad things happen against the Eagles. I think we’ll see improvement from the Cougars as the year goes on. I just hope it happens at a Paul Wulff improvement rate. Sorry Coug fans, I couldn’t help myself.
Over all, it was a pretty underwhelming week for the conference. There were a few close games that shouldn’t have been close and a few losses that should have been wins. The Pac-12 has a chance to make a statement this week, although week 1 didn’t boost anyone’s confidence. Here’s to a few upsets!
Thanks for reading!