It's all down to one game. Too bad we have to wait a week for it. Oregon's thrilling overtime win over Arizona in Tucson has set up a Civil War game for the conference and Rose Bowl berth. It's amazing what a single week of games can do. From unbelievably complicated scenarios for the conference title to a simple, winner take all contest. Elsewhere, we had Stanford falling at home to Cal in The Big Game despite Toby Gerhart's huge game because Shane Vereen had a bigger one. UCLA's win over Arizona St. also gave the conference seven bowl eligible teams.
Player of the Week: Jeremiah Masoli, Oregon- Shane Vereen had an outstanding game on a ridiculous 42 carries, but Masoli topped him in the Ducks' win over Arizona. Masoli ran for only 61 yards, but threw for 284. Most importantly though, Masoli threw for three touchdowns and ran for three more to account for every Oregon touchdown.
Stat of the Week: 7- UCLA's win over Arizona St. made them bowl eligible with six wins, the first time since 2006 that the Pac-10 had seven bowl eligible teams.
Game of the Week: UCLA at USC, 7:00 pm, FSN- It's the Los Angeles City Championship as the Bruins and Trojans square off at the Coliseum. UCLA has won three straight and have their arrow pointing up. USC has lost two of three and their arrow is pointing down. No matter the records though, the arrow goes in whatever direction this game does.
Pac-10 Power Poll
1) Oregon Ducks, 9-2 (two first place votes)- You don't win the Pac-10 just by being good. You need to get a little lucky too and Oregon got a bit lucky in their win over Arizona. When you combine a little luck with a lot of talent, you've got yourself a conference title contender and that's what the Ducks are. They'll take on Oregon St. in a game that's not your ordinary Civil War. That will determine the conference champion and lucky for the Ducks, it's at Autzen. Unlucky for us, it's in two weeks. Last Week: 1
2) Oregon St. Beavers, 8-3 (two first place votes)- Yet another dominating offensive performance by Oregon St., but because it was against Washington St., it wasn't nearly as impressive as the previous ones. The best thing that happened to the Beavers was Oregon and Stanford beating, taking any of the other variables away and giving them a win and you're in shot at the Rose Bowl. It should be interesting as Sean Canfield is completing over 70% of his passes and Jacquizz Rodgers ran for another 100+. Last Week: 3
3) Arizona Wildcats, 6-4- The Wildcats are good. In fact, they're very good, but they've yet to take the next step and don't quite know how to finish games. That was evident in their heartbreaking loss to Oregon that knocked them out of Rose Bowl contention. Nick Foles looked back to his old self, slinging the ball around like a pro, but the defense couldn't hold and the Wildcats are back in familiar territory, wondering, "what if?" With Arizona St. on Saturday though, they can't afford to sulk. Last Week: 4
4) California Golden Bears, 8-3- Stanford had stolen Cal's thunder in becoming the top team in the Bay Area. All the talk was about Toby Gerhart and the Cardinal. Well, the Bears couldn't stop Gerhart, but they did have a running back of their own to answer. Shane Vereen carried the ball a mind-numbing 42 times, rushed for almost 200 yards and found the end zone three times as the Bears topped the Cardinal 34-28 to reclaim their spot as the Bay Area's best. Now, they rest for a week. Last Week: 6
5) Stanford Cardinal, 7-4- Maybe they're not ready for the top of the Pac-10. Coming off of a pair of great wins over Oregon and USC, the Cardinal were poised to continue their run and take control of the Bay, but they couldn't stop the run. Despite Gerhart running for 136 yards and four touchdowns on 20 carries, Stanford threw the ball 30 times, completing only ten of them. You have to wonder why Gerhart didn't see more of the ball and Jim Harbaugh is thinking the same as Notre Dame comes to town. Last Week: 2
6) USC Trojans, 7-3- If you're USC, you have to love the bye week. After being waxed in two of their past three games, the Trojans have plenty to fix. The bye game gives them that opportunity, even if it means they have to think about their losses for a little while longer. If they think the heat they caught after being drubbed by Stanford was bad, it's nothing compared to what they would face if they lose to UCLA. This is a team that will come out playing with fire Saturday, but they will need more than fire. Last Week: 5
7) UCLA Bruins, 6-5- Up three, down five, up three. It's been a rocky year for UCLA, but after beating Arizona St. thanks to two defensive touchdowns, the Bruins are definitely trending up. A win over USC on Saturday would send this team from trending up to catapulting up though in what could be a program defining win for Rick Neuheisel. It won't be easy though and the Bruins, despite their wins, still have plenty of kinks to work out if they want to contemplate topping the Trojans. Last Week: 7
8) Washington Huskies, 3-7- When you have to look to bye weeks for positives, you're usually in trouble. That's not the case for Washington. Yes, they are a bad team, but they're better than last year and recruiting is going well so there is hope. A win in the Apple Cup on Saturday will seal what must be considered a positive season when you consider they were win-less just a year ago. Winning a rivalry game is never as easy as it seems though. Last Week: 9
9) Arizona St. Sun Devils, 4-7- It's five straight losses and counting now for Arizona St. Dennis Erickson has to start feeling some heat soon and a loss to rival Arizona on Saturday will really put the pressure on the ASU head coach. If they want to beat the Wildcats, they'll need a quarterback who can throw the ball. Unfortunately, it doesn't appear as if they have one, while another six turnover game like they had in their loss to UCLA will eliminate all hope of coming out on top. Last Week: 8
10) Washington St. Cougars, 1-10- The tradition. The intensity. The drama. All great things about rivalry games, but when you're Washington St., the ability to salvage a season is tops on the list of the best things about them. It has been a dreadful year for the Cougars and it's unclear how much better things will be in the future, but a second consecutive win over rivals Washington will give the Cougar faithful something to hang their hat on. Finding a healthy QB is step one to winning. Last Week: 10