It was perfect weekend for the old Pac-10 and a forgettable one for the new additions to the Pac-12. Here’s how it happened:
Utah (1-1) started the weekend poorly with an embarrassing overtime loss on the road to Utah State, 27-20. The Aggies of Utah State ended a 12-game losing streak to their instate rivals on the back of Chuckie Keeton’s 216 yards passing, two touchdowns, and a 23-yard overtime scamper that set up their game winning score. Utah’s quarterback Jordan Wynn suffered an injury to the same shoulder that ended his season last year.
Not to be outdone, Colorado (0-2) upped the ante by falling 30-28 at home to Sacramento State, the same FCS school that upset Oregon State last year. The Buffaloes found a star in fullback Christain Powell, who had 147 yards rushing and three touchdowns. However, his contributions weren’t enough to outdo the efforts of Hornets QB Garrett Saffron on the game-winning drive, which was capped by a walk-off field goal by walk-on kicker Edgar Castaneda. Castaneda was awarded a scholarship in the locker room after the game.
California (1-1) pulled off a 50-31 win over Southern Utah with a wild final quarter to give the newly renovated Memorial Stadium its first victory. It was a three point game at the end of the third, but the Bears battered the Thunderbirds by scoring 30 points in the fourth, including a pick six, a punt return, and a 77-yard touchdown run.
Washington State (1-1) squeaked one out at home against Eastern Washington, 24-20. Jeff Tuel threw two touchdowns as the Cougars took a 10-point half time lead, but a late fourth quarter Eagle touchdown made it close and WSU struggled to put the game away; penalties wiped out two touchdown plays near the end.
Oregon State (1-0) dominated #13 Wisconsin defensively on their way to a 10-7 victory in Corvallis. The Beaver defense smothered Montee Ball, his 21-game touchdown streak and likely his Heisman hopes, while Sean Mannion’s third quarter touchdown pass proved enough to propel OSU to their best out-of-conference win in history.
Oregon (2-0) dominated Fresno State, 42-25. Kenyon Barner starred for the Ducks, amassing 201 yards and three touchdowns as the Oregon offense overwhelmed yet another over-matched opponent. Speedy sophomore De’Anthony Thomas added 102 yards and two long touchdowns.
Steve Sarkisian’s stunt with a tiger at practice couldn’t spark a Washington (1-1) upset bid; they fell 41-3 to #3 LSU. UW scored first, but it was all LSU from there. The Tigers buried the Huskies with 242 total yards rushing and four scores on the ground in a game that was never close.
UCLA (2-0) nabbed the second big Pac-12 upset of the day with a 36-30 win over #16 Nebraska. Brett Hundley proved that the Rice game was no fluke by passing for 305 yards and four touchdowns and leading his team to what could prove to be a season-defining win. The Bruin defense did their part by harassing Nebraska QB Taylor Martinez all game and recording a safety.
Arizona (2-0) grabbed their own impressive upset by handily beating #18 Oklahoma State, 59-38. After falling behind early, the Wildcats rattled off 30 unanswered points and then smothered a comeback bid by the Cowboys to finish off the comfortable win. RB Ka’Deem Carey ran for 126 yards and three touchdowns, while QB Matt Smith added three scores of his own, two through the air.
Arizona State (2-0) made a statement with their 45-14 victory against Illinois. The Sun Devils started fast and kept their foot on the gas throughout. QB Taylor Kelly finished with 247 yards and a touchdown, while three different ASU running backs found the end zone.
Stanford (2-0) bounced back from their struggles last week by smashing Duke, 50-13. Duke outgained the Cardinal, but the Stanford defense forced four turnovers to keep the rout on. Quarterback Josh Nunes increased his production from last week with three touchdowns and 279 yards passing.
Poll Position: Five Pac-12 teams now sit in the AP Top 25 – #2 USC, #4 Oregon, #21 Stanford, #22 UCLA, #24 Arizona. Those same five also feature in the USA Today Coaches poll - #3 USC, #4 Oregon, #16 Stanford, #23 UCLA, #25 Arizona.
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