Week seven in the PAC-12 saw an upset, rebound games, and statement games. This week showed that our conference arguably has the best team in the nation with Oregon as they flexed their muscles in a big win. It also became apparent that the Heisman Trophy winner could very possibly come from the PAC-12. Lets take a deeper look at what all went down in week seven.
Arizona- 31 USC- 38
In the first ever Thursday night game in the Coliseum USC did not disappoint. Twelve days coming off the firing of Lane Kffin, interim coach Ed Orgeron had the Trojans dialed and ready to go from the start as the outplayed Arizona. Clay Helton, the Trojans’ new play caller, had an aggressive scheme that worked all night as quarterback Cody Kessler had his best game at USC. Even without Marqise Lee, who sat out due to knee problems, the Trojans were able to have touchdown passes of 63 and 62 yards. Sophomore receiver Nelson Agholor had a breakout game catching the ball seven times for 161 yards and a touchdown. Despite what the score indicates USC had this one controlled the entire game but some last minute touchdowns brought Arizona within seven. USC running back Silas Redd played his first game of the season, after missing the first five due to injuries, had 80 yards on the ground and drained the clock to seal the victory.
#2 Oregon- 45 #16 Washington- 24
Marcus Mariota solidified himself as the Heisman frontrunner with a dazzling performance against the sixteen ranked Huskies. Mariota threw for 366 yards and three touchdowns while also adding 88 yards and a score on the ground. Mariota has now accounted for 25 touchdowns this season but what is even more impressive is he has yet to turn the ball over. Bishop Sankey was the star for the Huskies running for 167 yards and two touchdowns in a losing effort. Late in the third quarter Sankey scored on a 25 yard run to make the score 31-24 but the Ducks answered fast. Mariota scored on a five yard run less than 90 seconds after the Huskies score to make it 38-24. Mariota threw another touchdown in the fourth to bring the Ducks up to 45 while the Huskies were shutout in the final quarter. Oregon has been playing lights out all season and now has a case to be ranked number one.
#5 Stanford-21 Utah-27
Kevin Hogan now has his first loss as Stanford’s starting quarterback as the Cardinal were upset by Utah. Utah’s offense had a great scheme coming in and kept the Cardinal guessing all night. The hard-nosed Stanford defense had no answer for Utah running back Bubba Poole as he ran for 111 yards and also had 75 receiving yards. The Stanford offense was never able to find rhythm and two second half fumbles hurt them tremendously. The Cardinal offense was only able to find the endzone twice and the other touchdown was a Ty Montgomery kickoff return. Late in the game Stanford had one final drive and Hogan brought them to the six yard line. On fourth down the Utes brought heavy pressure and Hogan overthrew Devon Cajuste. This was Utah’s biggest win since joining the PAC-12 and the biggest home win in school history.
Colorado- 13 Arizona State- 54
After starting the season 2-0 Colorado has dropped their last three games, and they haven’t even been close. At the half Arizona St. had the lead 47-6 and was able to relax in the second half. ASU had 532 total yards and only gave up 268. The ASU defense played hard and fast forcing four turnovers and suffocated the Buffalo offense. After a first quarter interception Colorado replaced quarterback Connor Woods with freshman Sefo Liufau. Liufau was not any better for Colorado as he threw two of his own interceptions.
Cal- 10 #11 UCLA- 37
UCLA quarterback Brett Hundley was the difference for the Bruins as he threw for 410 yards and three touchdowns. With the running game struggling Hundley had his best game as a Bruin to get the win. The Bruins only managed 78 yards on the ground with running back Jordan James hurt, but luckily for UCLA they did not turn the ball over once. Both teams played undisciplined football as they combined for 18 penalties for 151 yards. UCLA was able to take advantage of Cal turnovers and the defense was able to keep the Golden Bear offense at bay. Coming off a 400 yards game Cal quarterback Jared Goff threw for 215 yards and a pick.
Oregon State- 52 Washington State- 24
Going into the fourth quarter the game was tied at 24 and the Cougars looked to upset the Beavers in front of their home crowd. They did not. Oregon State had 28 unanswered points in the fourth quarter and shutdown the Cougar offense. Oregon St. quarterback Sean Mannion played great throwing for 493 yards, four touchdowns, with one interception. Conor Halliday did not play so well as managed 248 yards, one score, and three costly interceptions. Washington State had six total turnovers and that was obviously the biggest factor in their loss.
All twelve teams in the conference played this weekend and it brought us a lot of exciting football. Utah is now considered a serious threat after coming close to UCLA last week and outplaying Stanford this week. USC showed they are not giving up on their season yet as they played invigorated football against Arizona. Finally Oregon showed why they should be ranked number one and it was behind the arm of Heisman hopeful Marcus Mariota. Week seven brought a lot of fun and we can only expect more from week eight.