Pac-12 Week 1 Picks


I’ll be doing my Pac-12 picks every Monday, and then I will preview the UW game the day before it occurs.

Northern Colorado at Utah

Aug 30, Thursday, 4:15 PM

Utah is probably the most underrated team in the Pac-12, and there is an argument to made that they are a good bet to end the season ranked above Stanford, so it would be pretty odd if they were beaten by N. Colorado.

Prediction: Utah 30, N. Colorado 10

UCLA at Rice

Aug 30, Thursday, 4:30 PM

UCLA isn’t nearly as talented as Utah, but they’re certainly talented enough to take care of Rice, even on the road.

UCLA 31, Rice 17


Aug 30, Thursday, 7:15 PM

Bravo to WSU for playing an actual team to open the season.  Unfortunately, even with the Mike Leach experience in full effect, I don’t think they have enough talent on the roster to beat Brigham Young in Provo, though I’m sure it will be close.  If I’m wrong, it would be a great opening statement for Leach, but no matter how explosive your offense is, you still have to play defense, and WSU needs to show me they are capable before I pick them to win.

BYU 38, WSU 35

Northern Arizona at Arizona State

Aug 30, Thursday, 7:30 PM

I really want to pick against ASU, not because I dislike them, but because I think they will be really bad this year.  Still, N. Arizona will be FCS bad, and that’s pretty bad.  So I suppose ASU will probably win, but even if I’m wrong, no one outside of the state of Arizona will notice.  So I’m safe.

ASU 35, N. Arizona 21

San Jose State at #21 Stanford

Aug 31, Friday, 7:00 PM

Poor, poor San Jose State.  It seems like every single year, at some point during the non-conference schedule, I glance down at the ESPN ticker and see the numerical carnage of another beat down.  Stanford in 2011, Alabama, Wisconsin and Boise State in 2010, USC, Stanford, and Boise State in 2009.  Do they take the field to Amazing Grace played on bagpipes?  If not, they might as well start on Friday.

Stanford 38, San Jose State 10

Nicholls at Oregon State

Sep 1, Saturday, 12:00 PM

I’m calling it: this is a new low.  OSU is playing an FCS team that only had one win last year, against Evangel, an NAIA team playing in the Heart of America Conference.  They will win, probably even by a lot, but in the end, no one will really win at Reser Stadium, least of all the fans paying good money for a seat.

Oregon State 38, Nicholls 7

Nevada at California

Sep 1, Saturday, 12:00 PM

Here we go, some real, non-FCS football.  Nevada is a solid program, but Cal has an even more solid defense.  I don’t think it would come as a shock to anyone if Nevada pulled off the win, but in their first game in newly renovated Memorial Stadium, I’m sure the Bears will play to win.  And yes, this should probably be the last time I ever say play to win, as it is one of the worst sports clichés of all time.

Cal 28, Nevada 17

Colorado Vs. Colorado State (Neutral Site)

Sep 1, Saturday, 1:00 PM

I often find myself projecting the most reasonable, predictable results, which almost always leads to partial failure.  If all 12 of my picks are measured and responsible, I will probably be wrong at least once or twice.  So here I go, I’m inching my way out on to the swaying branch of daring selections by guessing that the worst team in the Pac-12 will be the one to be “upset.”  I recommend actual air quoting for that last word, by the way.

Colorado State 28, Colorado 24

Hawaii at #1 USC

Sep 1, Saturday, 4:30 PM

Wouldn’t it be a great story if Norm Chow, Head Coach of the Warriors, marched into the Coliseum, shut down the offense he once piloted as Offensive Coordinator of the Trojans from ’01-’04, and claimed an upset victory?  Oh, but wait, USC is frighteningly good.  So much for that.  At least Hawaii will score well.  They always score well.

USC 49, Hawaii 28

Toledo at Arizona

Sep 1, Saturday, 7:30 PM

It seems like just yesterday that Arizona was pretty good.  I certainly remember them clobbering the Huskies 44-10 back in 2010.  And then they were terrible in 2011.  And then Nick Foles graduated.  What does all that mean? Nothing in this case, because they should still beat Toledo no matter what.  It’s worth noting that the last time the two teams played back in 2010, the score was 41-2.  What are the odds that score repeats?

Arizona 28, Toledo 10

Arkansas State at #5 Oregon

Sep 1, Saturday, 7:30 PM

The Ducks will score a lot, Autzen will be loud, and Chip Kelly will speak exclusively out of the side of his mouth.

Oregon 56, Arkansas State 17

My preview of SDSU at Washington, along with my prediction of the score, will be posted Friday morning.