Two of the Pac-12’s best teams were on bye during week seven in Stanford and Washington, but there was still plenty of shake-up in our weekly power rankings.
Let’s take a look at how the conference stacks up after seven weeks of football:
PAC-12 Power Rankings Week 8
|1||Washington||Stanford (+1)||Stanford (+1)|
|2||Stanford (+1)||UW (+2)||ASU (+2)|
|3||Washington State (+1)||Washington State (+2)||Arizona|
|4||USC (-3)||USC (-3)||Washington (+1)|
|5||ASU (+2)||ASU (+1)||Washington State (+3)|
|6||UofA (-1)||UofA (+2)||USC (-5)|
|7||UCLA (+1)||Utah (-4)||Utah (-1)|
|8||Utah (-2)||UCLA (+1)||Cal (-1)|
|9||Cal (-1)||Cal (-2)||UCLA|
|12||Oregon State||Oregon State||Oregon State|
A closer look:
Madden: Washington and Stanford are still the best teams in the conference, even though they didn’t get a chance to prove it this weekend. WSU had a nice rebound blowout victory over an increasingly-lowly Colorado squad and ASU once again shocked the conference. I have USC just a tick ahead of the Sun Devils solely because the talent level with the Trojans is higher — that doesn’t mean I’ll be picking them to win this weekend, though. Arizona has been good, but Tate has been punishing really poor defenses and the U of A defense is still pretty abysmal. UCLA is the last average to below-average team before the Pac-12 completely drops off.
Destin: Ranked at No. 20 in the nation — while they didn't play Saturday — the Cardinal are playing like a top-5 program this season. Stanford has won four games in the row (longest streak in the Pac-12), while USC, Washington and Washington State have suffered rough losses. On the other hand, the Arizona schools are both on the rise, and it's tough to swallow, but both Arizona State and Arizona are in the hunt for a Pac-12 South championship. Washington and Washington State regained top spots in my ranking partially because we've been refreshed two weeks now after each were upset, and because Utah self destructed.
Tonis: A second dominant performance in a row for ASU, combined with USC being dismantled in South Bend lead to a new top three. Stanford and Washington both sat and watched this week, moving up the ranking in the process. The Sun Devils edge out the Wildcats due to strength of schedule and the Trojans haven't put together a convincing win outside of Oregon State since week two. The bottom half of the conference has been either uneven or downright bad since Pac-12 play began, making it hard to read exactly where they stand compared to each other. With Stanford playing the Washington schools in two and three weeks, the North picture will be a lot clearer then, but the South could stay close until the Territorial Cup, the way things are going.