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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

Arizona Wildcats rise in Pac-12 power rankings

Ryan+Revock+%2F++The+Daily+Wildcat%0A%0AUA+running+back+KaDeem+Carey+runs+the+ball+at+home+against+Utah+on+Oct.+19.++
Ryan Revock
Ryan Revock / The Daily Wildcat UA running back Ka’Deem Carey runs the ball at home against Utah on Oct. 19.

1. No. 3 Oregon (8-0, 5-0 Pac-12 Conference) Last week: 1

The Ducks were off last week and didn’t get a chance to rise in the BCS standings. However, Thursday, Oregon travels to No. 5 Stanford to play in the conference game of the year, with the opportunity to make the biggest statement of the season.

2. No. 5 Stanford (7-1, 5-1) LW: 2

The Cardinal had a bye as well. Stanford slipped on the road in Utah on Oct. 12 but since has shown that was just a fluke, beating nationally ranked schools in back-to-back weeks following the loss. A win over Oregon will make up for that mid-season flub and will give it the advantage over the Ducks in the chase for the conference title.

3. No. 22 ASU (6-2, 4-1) LW: 3

Early in the season, ASU was one of the most inconsistent schools in the conference. With the season coming to an end, ASU is hitting its stride, demolishing three consecutive opponents with 53 or more points in each game. With Utah and Oregon State next on the schedule, the trend should continue.

4. No. 19 UCLA (6-2, 3-2) LW: 5

After dropping two consecutive games to then-No. 13 Stanford and No. 3 Oregon, the Bruins got back on track with a softball victory over Colorado at home. Still, UCLA’s offense has struggled to run the ball recently, a weakness that could plague a Bruins team that can’t afford to lose on the road at Arizona.

5. Arizona (6-2, 3-2) LW: 6

It wasn’t pretty, but a road conference win at Cal is a win that head coach Rich Rodriguez will happily take. The Wildcats are walking a tightrope and will almost certainly be eliminated from conference championship contention with a loss this week against UCLA. Arizona has improved greatly since its Oct. 10 loss to USC, but Saturday is the perfect opportunity for UA and Heisman hopeful Ka’Deem Carey to make a statement.

6. USC (6-3, 3-2) LW: 7

The Trojans’ offense has been inconsistent all season. Injuries and a change of head coach have caused instability. This past Friday, USC finally had someone new step up, as running back Javorius Allen ran for 133 yards and three touchdowns in USC’s 31-14 win over Oregon State. But with Stanford and UCLA left on their schedule, the Trojans are still very much in the thick of the Pac-12 South race.

7. Oregon State (6-3, 4-2) LW: 4

The Beavers’ six-game winning streak after being upset by FCS Eastern Washington was obviously deceptive, as they have had two straight losses since to legitimate opponents in Stanford and USC. Now that fans have a better grasp of how average this OSU team is, a road victory at No. 22 ASU this week looks unlikely.

8. Washington (5-3, 2-3) LW: 8

The Huskies are one of the most talented teams in the conference, but three straight losses to Stanford, Oregon and ASU have shaken the once- nationally ranked Washington team. UW is coming off a bye week and plays a less-talented Colorado team at home this week. Don’t expect to see the Huskies move much in the power rankings any time soon.

9. Utah (4-4, 1-4) LW: 9

The Utes’ goal of winning the Pac-12 South is in the toilet. But with four games remaining, two against beatable teams, there’s still a chance for Utah to save face and reach a bowl game.

10. Washington State (4-5, 2-4) LW: 10

The Cougars probably won’t reach a bowl game, but they are 10th in the rankings for their strong start to the season and upset road win at then-No. 25 USC on Sept. 7.

11. Colorado (3-5, 0-5) LW: 11 and California (1-8, 0-6) LW: 12

These two schools will remain tied for 11th until Nov. 16, when they play one another for their biggest game of the season. The loser will most likely finish the season with zero conference wins.

—Follow Luke Della @LukeDella

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