Pac-12 Picks: Week Eight


Oct 12, 2013; Pullman, WA, USA; Washington State Cougars wide receiver River Cracraft (84) makes a catch against the Oregon State Beavers during the second half at Martin Stadium. The Beavers beat the Cougars 52-24. Mandatory Credit: James Snook-USA TODAY Sports

Charleston Southern (7-0) at Colorado (2-3) 11:00am Saturday

It should be safe to assume that the Buffaloes will end Charleston Southern’s (seriously!) seven game win streak. If they don’t it will be embarrassing, and even if they are battling with Cal for worst team in the Pac-12, I think they’re beyond embarrassing losses like that.

Colorado 55, Charleston Southern 3

#9 UCLA (5-0) at #12 Stanford (5-1) 12:30pm Saturday

It’s a bit odd to see Stanford ranked lower than UCLA for this game. What was always destined to be an exciting match-up given the implications of last year’s Stanford win has now become a must-win type game for the Cardinal coming off of a road loss at Utah. I have been high on UCLA all year long, and I believe Brett Hundley is the second best quarterback in the conference behind Marcus Mariota. Yet, Stanford is at home and has everything to prove, and they possess great depth and strength in the trenches, especially on the offensive line. UCLA may end up having the better season overall, but that doesn’t mean they’ll pull out the win here.

Stanford 31, UCLA 28

USC (4-2) at Notre Dame (4-2) 4:30pm Saturday

All Coach Orgeron related optimism aside, USC’s defense did not successfully close out last Saturday’s 38-31 win over Arizona. B.J. Denker managed to rack up 363 passing yards and four passing touchdowns after a previous career high of 158 yard and one score. To me, that is a big huge red flag when it comes to this team’s ability to travel all the way to Notre Dame and execute for four quarters. All the fan support and good feelings will be gone, and if Denker can rack up yards through the air for the first time in his career at the Coliseum, you can bet senior Tommy Rees will make the Trojans pay even more dearly. The USC offense is down Tre Madden, but the depth at running back is so ridiculous that they shouldn’t miss him too badly. Combined with the increasingly solid play of Cody Kessler, and I expect a Notre Dame win, but a close one.

Notre Dame 31, USC 24

Utah (4-2) at Arizona (3-2) 7:00pm Saturday

With each week, the Pac-12 picture gains a little bit of clarity. And with each week I’m more and more confident that Utah will emerge as a solid eight or nine win team while Arizona will suffer the unfortunate fate of being good but not good enough in the deep Pac-12 South. If the Wildcats want to prove me wrong (I’m sure that’s their main objective), they can win this game at home, and I’ll shut up.

Utah 28, Arizona 24

Washington State (4-3) at #2 Oregon (6-0) 7:00pm Saturday

This will likely not be pretty. While Oregon is almost guaranteed to win this one in Eugene, whether or not Connor Halliday can put together a competent performance against a vicious Ducks secondary will say a lot about WSU’s chances going forward. It seems more likely that he’ll throw three or four picks than three or four touchdowns.

Oregon 56, WSU 10

Oregon State (5-1) at Cal (1-5) 7:30pm Saturday

Mannion and Goff could very well combine for over 1,000 yards and ten passing touchdowns. This would not surprise me. The Beavers, who are undefeated outside of that FCS snafoo, should win based on their possession of a competent defense and a roster largely unravaged by injury.

Oregon State 52, Cal 30

Record Last Week: 4-2

Record This Year: 46-6