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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Week 4 Pac-12 football power rankings

Amelia McAnear

DJ Warnell Jr., a safety on the Arizona football team, hypes up the crowd at the game against the University of Colorado Boulder on Saturday, Oct. 1, at Arizona Stadium. The Wildcats would go on to win the game 43-20 and advance their record to 3-2.

The opening week of Pac-12 play was nothing short of thrilling, with three highly-anticipated ranked matchups taking center stage. In addition, three out of the six conference games were one-possession games, adding to the excitement and tension of the conference play for the Pac-12. This level of competitiveness and intensity in the opening week sets the tone for what promises to be an outstanding season for college football fans.

Arizona 21 – Stanford 20 

DJ Williams’ go-ahead touchdown in the fourth quarter completed Arizona’s fourth-quarter comeback to beat Stanford University 21-20. The Wildcats trailed most of the night, but a late rally gave Arizona its first win in conference play.

  • Arizona 3-1 (1-0)

The Wildcats beat Stanford for the first time since 2009, snapping a six-game losing streak against the Cardinal. Backup quarterback Noah Fifita led Arizona’s game-winning drive after starting quarterback Jayden de Laura left in the fourth quarter with a leg injury. Arizona’s defense, initially a major concern at the beginning of the season, continues to assert its dominance in the Wildcats’ recent victory. The defense played a pivotal role by holding their opponent to less than 400 yards for the fourth consecutive game. The Wildcats will be tested when they face No. 8 University of Washington on Saturday, Sept. 30, at 7 p.m.

  • Stanford 1-3 (0-2): 

Even though the game ended in a loss, Stanford put up a great fight, delivering a well-rounded performance on offense and defense and keeping the game competitive from start to finish. Ashton Daniels and Justin Lamson shared the quarterback position for the Cardinal, with Daniels throwing for 198 yards and Lamson completing 48 passing yards and 57 rushing yards. The decision to alternate quarterbacks proved smart, as it kept the Wildcat’s defense guessing and on their toes. Stanford hosts the University of Oregon on Saturday, Sept. 30, at 7:30 p.m.

No. 10 Oregon 42 – No. 19 Colorado 6

The No.10 Oregon handed the No. 19 University of Colorado its first season loss in a 42-6 rout. The Ducks held one of the nation’s top offenses to only 199 yards, giving coach Prime and the Buffaloes a reality check as Pac-12 play begins.  

  • No. 10 Oregon 4-0 (1-0):

Bo Nix and the Oregon Ducks jumped out early and never looked back, sending the 19th-ranked Buffaloes home looking for answers. Nix had an impressive game with 276 yards passing and three touchdowns, completing 85% of his passes. Oregon’s wide receiver Troy Franklin also had a standout performance with eight receptions for a season-high 126 yards and two touchdowns. The Ducks’ offense has been dominant throughout the first four weeks of the season, ranking second in yards per game (570) and points per game (54). Oregon travels to Stanford to play the Cardinal on Sept. 30, at 3:30 p.m.

  • No. 19 Colorado 3-1 (0-1):

The Buffaloes’ Cinderella story came to a halt as they were outplayed by one of the nation’s best offenses. Shedeur Sanders, the Colorado quarterback, entered Saturday’s matchup averaging 417 passing yards but was held to a season-low 159 yards. It was evident that the Buffaloes missed their two-way star Travis Hunter, who had exited last weekend’s game with an injury that sent him to the hospital. However, Colorado must find ways to fill his absence over the next few games until his return. Unfortunately, the Buffaloes will be tested again when they host No. 5 Southern California on Saturday, Sept. 30, at 9 a.m. 

No. 11 Utah 14 – No. 22 UCLA 7

The University of Utah’s excellent defense proved to be the deciding factor in their 14-7 victory over UCLA

  • No. 11 Utah 4-0 (1-0):

Utah started the game with a touchdown on the opening play. Linebacker Karene Reid intercepted a pass from UCLA quarterback Dante Moore and ran it back for 21 yards giving Utah the lead early. Reid’s interception ended up being the deciding factor in the game, as both teams struggled to put points on the board. Utah quarterback Nate Johnson threw for 117 yards and one touchdown. Utah is eager for the return of their starting quarterback Cam Rising, who tore his ACL in last season’s Rose Bowl. The Utes travel to Corvallis to face the No. 19 Oregon State on Friday, Sept. 29, at 6 p.m.

  • No. 22 UCLA 3-1 (0-1):

The Bruins spent the entirety of the game trying to catch up after falling behind early. UCLA’s freshman quarterback, Dante Moore, threw for 234 yards and one touchdown but also had a costly interception that was returned for a Utah touchdown. UCLA managed to shut down Utah’s offense, holding them to 219 yards, their lowest of the season. However, they failed to counter, producing only 243 yards of offense while scoring a season-low seven points. The Bruins’s next matchup is not until Oct. 7, when they host Washington State.

No. 21 Washington State 38 – No. 14 Oregon State 35

Washington State outlasted Oregon State 38-35 in the battle of the final two remaining Pac-12 teams following this season.The Cougars fended off a late rally by the Beavers to remain unbeaten and pick up their second top-25 win.

  • No. 21 Washington State 4-0 (1-0): 

Although a close game, the Cougars controlled the entire game, never trailing. Washington State quarterback Cameron Ward threw for 404 yards and four touchdowns. Receivers Kyle Williams and Josh Kelly collected career-high performances in receptions yards. Williams hauled in seven receptions for 174 yards and one touchdown, while teammate Kelly had eight for 159 yards and three touchdowns. The Cougars enter their bye week 4-0, with their next matchup on the road against UCLA on Oct. 7. 

  • No. 14 Oregon State 3-1 (1-0):

The Beavers’ late rally fell short after nearly overcoming a 21-point deficit in the fourth quarter. DJ Uiagalelei had a rough start but managed to find his pace in the latter part of the fourth quarter, ultimately throwing for 198 yards and one touchdown. The Beavers, on the other hand, thrived in their running game, amassing a total of 242 rushing yards with Deshaun Fenwick leading the pack with 101 rushing yards on 11 carries and scoring one touchdown. The Beavers will look to rebound when they host No. 10 Utah on Friday, Sept. 29, at 6 p.m. 

No. 8 Washington 59 – Cal 32

Washington’s top-ranked offense led the way, as the Huskies cruised past the University of California 59-32. Through the first four games, Washington has scored 199 points, the most since 1944. 

  • No. 8 Washington 4-0 (1-0): 

Michael Penix Jr. had an impressive performance yet again, throwing for 304 yards and four touchdowns. He currently leads the nation with 1,636 passing yards. The Husky offense has also been exceptional with an average of 593 total yards, which is the highest in the country. The Huskies were able to take a 14-0 lead before Penix even touched the ball, thanks to a 45-yard interception return, followed by an 83-yard punt return and back-to-back touchdowns. The Huskies look to stay hot when they travel to Tucson to face Arizona, on Saturday, Sept. 30, at 7 p.m.  

  • Cal 2-2 (0-1):

Cal’s struggles in the first half put them in a hole early. However, the Golden Bears were able to move the ball more efficiently in the second half, scoring a touchdown on three of their five drives in the half. Ben Finley and Sam Jackson V split quarterback duties for the Golden Bears. Finley threw for 207 yards, two touchdowns and three interceptions while Jackson V threw for 156 yards and one touchdown. Cal will look to rebound when they host Arizona State, on Saturday, Sept. 30, at noon.

No. 5 USC 42 – Arizona State 28

USC outlasted a tough road test by Arizona State, knocking off the Sun Devils 42-28 to stay undefeated. Arizona State hung around, cutting the gap down to seven points in the closing minutes before ultimately losing by 14 against one of the nation’s best teams. 

  • No. 5 USC 4-0 (2-0):

USC escaped its first road test of the season, after coming off of the bye week the previous weekend. Trojan quarterback Caleb Williams threw for 322 yards and three touchdowns, while also rushing for two touchdowns. The reigning Heisman winner remained perfect, having not thrown an interception through the first four games of the season. USC running back MarShawn Lloyd rushed for 154 yards on 14 carries, while receiver Brendon Rice hauled seven receptions for 133 yards and two touchdowns. The Trojans travel to Boulder to face Colorado on Saturday, Sept. 30, at 9 a.m.

  • Arizona State: 1-3 (0-1):

The Sun Devils, coming off of their first shutout loss since 2008, entered their matchup against the Trojans -34 point underdogs. Despite this, the Sun Devils battled the Trojans, keeping the game close the entire way. Drew Pyne had a solid performance, throwing for 221 yards, two touchdowns and one interception. Arizona State running back Cameron Skattebo had an impressive game, rushing for 111 yards on 20 carries and scoring one touchdown. The Sun Devils will look to get back into the win column when they travel to face Cal on Saturday, Sept. 30, at noon.

Pac-12 Power Rankings:

  1. No. 7 Washington 4-0 (1-0)
  2. No. 9 Oregon 4-0 (1-0)
  3. No. 8 USC 4-0 (1-0)
  4. No. 10 Utah 4-0 (1-0)
  5. No. 16 Washington State 4-0 (1-0)
  6. No. 19 Oregon State 3-1 (0-1)
  7. UCLA 3-1 (0-1)
  8. Arizona 3-1 (1-0)
  9. Colorado 3-1 (0-1)
  10.  California 2-2 (0-1)
  11. Arizona State 1-3 (0-1)
  12. Stanford 1-3 (0-1)

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