As the season reaches the midway point, the Pac-12 is inevitably inching closer to the crescendo that will result in peak chaos. It seems we learn more and more about the teams in this conference with each passing week, and it is likely we'll be unearthing something new about them this week, too. Let's take a look at the Week 7 matchups and what to expect in each matchup.
No. 18 UCLA Bruins (4-1, 1-1 in Pac-12) @ No. 15 Stanford Cardinal (4-1, 3-0)
The Cardinal have rebounded since falling in Week 1 at Northwestern, and are vying to be considered the top team in the conference. Since Jim Mora has been at the helm of the Bruins, UCLA has struggled to overcome Stanford. With the Cardinal rolling, and the Bruins coming off a bye week following their first loss of the year, we'll bet that history reflects itself in the final scoreline.
Prediction: UCLA 20, Stanford 28
Oregon State Beavers (2-3, 0-2) @ Washington State Cougars (3-2, 1-1)
The Cougars are coming off of a surprising overtime win over the Ducks and seem to finally be putting it together as a wholesome unit. The Beavers were simply outmatched by Arizona last week, and they struggled to rebound from their bout with Stanford. Should the Cougars play the way they did during their win over Oregon, we like them to come away victorious here, too.
Prediction: Oregon State 24, Washington State 42
USC Trojans (3-2, 1-0) @ No. 14 Notre Dame Fighting Irish (5-1)
The Trojans will now be led by Clay Helton moving forward this season in wake of Steve Sarkisian's firing. With a somewhat new face leading the team, it will be interesting to see if the players will be able to overcome the change this week, especially with having to travel to South Bend and face a very talented Notre Dame team.
Prediction: USC 17, Notre Dame 31
Arizona Wildcats (4-2, 1-2) @ Colorado Buffaloes (3-3, 0-2)
With Anu Solomon back under center last week, the Wildcats were able to dominate on the offensive side of the ball in a 44-7 rout over Oregon State. This week, they travel to Boulder to take on the Buffaloes, who are coming off of a 48-23 loss against Arizona State. Colorado may actually put up some resistance this week, but ultimately the Wildcats are too good of a team to falter this week.
Prediction: Arizona 44, Colorado 27
Arizona State Sun Devils (4-2, 2-1) @ No. 4 Utah Utes (5-0, 2-0)
The Sun Devils seem to have finally woken up, earning two straight wins over Pac-12 opponents. This week, ASU will face the No.4-ranked Utes, who are coming off a 30-24 win over California during which they forced six turnovers while intercepting Golden Bears quarterback Jared Goff four times.
The two teams were interlocked in a game that needed overtime last year that went in favor of the Sun Devils, and they have a very good chance of earning the upset this weekend. Even still, the Utes are a more experienced team than they were last year, and deservedly enter the favorites.
Prediction: Arizona State 24, Utah 27
Oregon Ducks (3-3, 1-2) @ Washington Huskies (3-2, 1-1)
These two come into the tilt having been on separate sides of upsets the week before. The Huskies were able to defeat USC on the road in a mid-week matchup, while the Ducks fell in overtime to Washington State after holding a lead late in the game.
The Oregon offense has been searching for any type of form, but against a young-but-stout Washington defense, their success isn't guaranteed. The difference in the game will more likely be decided by the play of Washington's offense against an average (at best) Oregon defense.
Prediction: Oregon 31, Washington 34