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BN Pac-10 Power Poll: Week 5

2009 BN Pac-10 Power Poll
2009 BN Pac-10 Power Poll

It's going to be USC as the favorite to win the Pac-10 with Oregon and Cal chasing them down this year, right? Well, many still consider USC the favorite and Oregon is right there with them, but take a look at the top of the conference standings and there is not USC, not Oregon, but Stanford. At 3-0 in conference with two of those wins against solid teams (UCLA and Washington, albeit both at home), the Cardinal are in good shape as Jim Harbaugh continues to do a fantastic job. Meanwhile, across the bay, things are not going nearly as well.

Player of the Week: James Rodgers, Oregon St.- The junior reeled in ten passes for 114 yards to go along with a touchdown as he tormented the Arizona St. defense en route to the Beavers' first win in Tempe since 1969.

Stat of the Week: 72-6- Since getting off to a 3-0 start that propelled them into the top 10, Cal has lost their last two games by a combined score of 72-6.

Game to Watch: Stanford at Oregon St., 4:00 pm PDT, FSN- Oregon St. has a history of starting slow and with their win over Arizona St. last week, it appears as if they're coming on as usual. Stanford is tops in the Pac-10 at the moment and riding him, but a win over Oregon St. in Corvallis will truly make them a title contender.

Pac-10 Power Poll

1) Oregon Ducks, 4-1 (3 first place votes)- A dominating win over Washington St. at home? Ho hum. A pair of road games, at UCLA and at Washington, followed by a visit from USC are next for the Ducks though as they will look to show the same form as they did over Cal.  If they can get through these next three, they could very well be staring a Rose Bowl berth straight in the eyes with Stanford up next. Last Week: 1

2) USC Trojans, 4-1 (1 first place vote)- How impressive was last week's win over Cal? I don't think anyone is so sure anymore, but regardless, the Trojans came out and took care of business. The USC defense is flying around and the offense is coming along, but they will have to use this bye week to get past coming along and get to good with Notre Dame to follow. Last Week: 2

3) Stanford Cardinal, 4-1- First place in the Pac-10 a week into October? Jim Harbaugh's rebuilding project is ahead of schedule and Toby Gerhart is emerging as a real Hesiman Trophy contender, but they must venture away from the Farm for consecutive games, beginning with this weekend in Corvallis. Last Week: 4

4) Oregon St. Beavers, 3-2- It took 40 years, but the Beavers finally won a game in Tempe. As you would expect, the Rodgers brothers led the way, but the defense was able to hold the Arizona St. running game to 2.2 yards per carry and the customary 2-3 Oregon St. start is actually a 3-2 start this season. Can they hand Stanford their first conference loss of the year? Last Week: 9

5) UCLA Bruins, 3-1- It wasn't a great game by any means, but could some of the criticisms being heaped upon this UCLA squad be because of unfairly high expectations? The Bruins entered last weekend 3-0, but hadn't beaten a great team yet or done much very convincingly. 3-1 is a solid start to the year though, but a visit from Oregon on Saturday will certainly test the Bruins. Last Week: 5

6) California Golden Bears, 3-2- Oh, how the mighty have fallen. Just two weeks ago, the Bears were the conference's top BCS contender, but now Cal fans are dreading a repeat of last year which had them scrapping just to qualify for a bowl game. Jahvid Best will need Kevin Riley to start completing some passes or the running back will continue to have nowhere to run the ball. Last Week: 3

7) Arizona Wildcats, 3-1- Nick Foles had a great debut start two weeks ago, but the talented signal caller will certainly benefit from last week's bye. With a week to review the film, take a deep breath and prepare for Husky Stadium, Foles will have to be on the spot because Washington will put points on the board. With a win in Corvallis under their belt, why can't the Wildcats win in Seattle though? Last Week: 7

8) Washington Huskies, 2-3- A heartbreaking loss in South Bend as the Notre Dame offense proved to be a bit too much for the Huskies as they fell 37-30 in overtime. Steve Sarkisian's decision to kick the field goal instead of going for it on fourth down is under the fire, but the fact is that you're not going to win many games in which you give up 530 yards. Last Week: 6

9) Arizona St. Sun Devils, 2-2- A demoralizing loss to Oregon St. has the Sun Devils on the ropes. Now, they have back to back losses to take to Washington St. this weekend and two early season wins over a pair of hapless teams. Not exactly a sterling resume, but the offense did put up over 400 yards last week so if they can hang on to the ball, they can turn things around. Last Week: 8

10) Washington St. Cougars, 1-4- Thoroughly outmatched by Oregon at Autzen Stadium, the Cougars will move to far friendlier territory this week as Arizona St. visits Pullman. In their last 10 quarters, Washington St.'s offense has only scored three touchdowns to their defense's two and two of those came with the game well out of reach. Can the home field turn things around? Last Week: 10