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Pac-12 Football: Week 3 Narratives and Predictions

Here's a look into this week's Pac-12 matchups.

Joshua Dahl-USA TODAY Sports

Conference play is finally here! Sort of. For the third straight week, the Pac-12 will take part in a primetime matchup, except this time it will feature two members of the conference when Stanford and No. 6 USC face off. Here's a look into this week's contests.

New Mexico @ Arizona State

To follow up their opening loss to Texas A&M, the Sun Devils delivered their fans a scare as they managed to edge out Cal Poly. While New Mexico provides another option-based attack, we expect ASU to kick into gear and really run away with this one.

Prediction: New Mexico 24, Arizona State 45

Georgia State @ No. 12 Oregon

Oregon's loss to Michigan State last weekend was an abrupt reminder that Vernon Adams Jr. isn't quite what Marcus Mariota was. Regardless, considering the fight that the Ducks put up in East Lansing (despite subpar quarterback play by recent standards), it would be odd to think this one would be anything other than a tune-up game to get the team back on track.

Prediction: Georgia State 21, Oregon 48

Utah State @ Washington

The national narrative surrounding the Huskies at the moment is the intriguing play of true freshman quarterback Jake Browning, but the defense has also played extraordinarily well, too. After holding Boise State to 16 points, Washington shut out Sacramento State the following week (okay, it's Sacramento State, but the Hornets did put up 41 points in their opener themselves).

Coming off of a rivalry game loss to Utah during which the Aggies only put up 14 points and only 12 points in their opening win over Southern Utah, it can be assumed the Huskies should be able to pull off a win this week.

Prediction: Utah State 10, Washington 27

Colorado @ Colorado State

Since 2011, the two schools have alternated wins, and if we're being superstitious, then that means it's Colorado's turn to take the victory in the Rocky Mountain Showdown. However, Colorado State took the win 31-17 last year, and coming off of a 23-20 loss in overtime to Minnesota last weekend, the Rams may be ready to end the pattern at home. With Colorado coming off of a good win as well, it should be a fun contest.

Prediction: Colorado 24, Colorado State 27

California @ Texas

To this point, the Golden Bears haven't been faced with the stiffest of competition, and the way the Longhorns performed this season, it remains to be seen whether that will change. Cal has scored 73 and 35 points, while Texas has given up 38 and 28 points in two games. We'll see if the Golden Bears are up to the challenge of beating a galvanized Longhorns unit.

Prediction: California 35, Texas 31

Stanford @ No. 6 USC

So far, the conference is 0-2 in primetime games this year. Regardless of who wins, that record will become 1-3. USC finally gets a chance to prove how great this team is. Stanford gets a chance to recover from its Week 1 defeat to Northwestern. Considering last year's game came down to the final possession, this year's should be a good one.

Prediction: Stanford 20, USC 26

San José State @ Oregon State

Oregon State only managed to put up one touchdown against Michigan last week, but considering everything that was going on internally, if it's handled the Beavers could very well return to promising form this week. They'll need to average more than 264 yards a game moving forward, though.

Prediction: San José State 24, Oregon State 28

Wyoming @ Washington State

Washington State managed to come through late in the contest with Rutgers, and their offense is clicking. The Cougars come in as a 24-point favorite, and deservedly so. Here's to what should be a shootout.

Prediction: Wyoming 20, Washington State 52

No. 19 BYU @ No. 10 UCLA

In the absence of potential Heisman candidate Taysom Hill, Tanner Magnum has become a national darling completing two Hail Mary's in as many games. BYU is going to make this game competitive, UCLA Bruins will have a chance to show how good they really are before conference play.

Prediction: BYU 20, UCLA 24

No. 21 Utah @ Fresno State

Utah has started off the year in impressive form. The Utes are on a quest to prove they belong in the conversation for who dominates the conference, and shouldn't find too many bumps in the road along the way en route to defeating the Bulldogs.

Prediction: Utah 26, Fresno State 17

Northern Arizona @ No. 20 Arizona

After struggling with UTSA, Arizona managed to close out Nevada before claiming the team's second victory of the season. In 2013, Northern Arizona was shut out, 35-0 against the Wildcats. Arizona seems to have finally found form offensively, and that trend should continue this week.

Prediction: Northern Arizona 13, Arizona 34