Pac-12 Football - The good, the bad & the unknown: Stanford and Washington go down to the wire and raise questions

Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports

Marcus Mariota, Keith Price and Ty Montgomery had epic games in an exciting week of Pac-12 play.

The Good

Marcus Mariota - Mariota has had some fine days as a Duck, but Saturday may have been the best of them all as he came up just two yards short of having 500 total yards and put up seven touchdowns. It may have been against Colorado, but those are the kind of numbers that will win you the Heisman.

Keith Price - Price may not have been quite as prolific as Mariota, but he played arguably his best Pac-12 game as a Husky against Stanford. Price threw for 350 yards and two touchdowns and also made a number of unbelievable plays with his feet to escape pressure and keep the Huskies alive while dealing with what appeared to be a very painful thumb injury.

Ty Montgomery - Montgomery has flashed his abilities throughout his career at Stanford, but finally put together a full performance in which he looked like a budding star and pretty much single-handedly saved the Cardinal from losing to the Huskies. Montgomery took the opening kickoff for a touchdown, made a great touchdown grab just before the half and nearly took back another kickoff in the third quarter that set up a touchdown and stole momentum away from the Huskies.

The Bad

Pac-12 referees (Land Clark's crew) - I have repeatedly called out Jay Stricherz and his crew as being the worst in the country and while they will probably never be usurped from that seat, the flag-happy Land Clark crew continues to make a name for themselves. Washington has been sloppy with penalties all season, but Clark's crew seemed overzealous with just how much laundry they were putting on the field and made a reversal of catch that definitely looked questionable, though probably not inconclusive and was overturned, ending a Pac-12 game in controversy once again.

Washington's special teams - It's hard to lose a game when you outgain a team by more than 200 yards and don't lose the turnover game, but Washington's special teams unit made sure that happened. The Huskies were impressive on offense and defense against the Cardinal, but gave up a kick return for a touchdown, nearly gave up a second and gave a touchdown right before the half because of a disastrous pooch kick.

Cal - Anyone who thought that Cal had just started out the season poorly due to a nightmare schedule probably had to come back to Earth Saturday when the Bears got dismissed by Washington State 44-22 at home. The Bears are definitely the worst team in the North and now face a schedule where they probably won't be favored in a game until mid-November when they head to Boulder.

The Unknown

Washington & Stanford - Washington essentially outplayed the Cardinal in Palo Alto as they took them down to the wire and a knee jerk reaction would be to automatically assume that it simply means that the Huskies are for real and bordering on being an elite Pac-12 team, but it's never that simple. Does the outcome in fact mean that? Or does it mean that Stanford isn't as good as many thought, or was it simply a good matchup for the Huskies, as it was in 2012, and both teams are still who they were last season? We probably won't know any of this for sure for a while.

Arizona State - The Sun Devils have appeared to be teetering on the edge of being a legitimately ranked team, but they might be teetering off that ledge after losing to a very average Notre Dame in Arlington, Texas. It was a close lose and the Arizona State passing game looked great, but the Sun Devils alarmingly couldn't stop an Irish offense that had been moribund all season thus far. Will the Sun Devil defense be good enough for them to take the next step forward this season?

De'Anthony Thomas - Thomas predictably sat out of Oregon's scrimmage, I mean game, against Colorado Saturday after spraining his ankle the week before, but with the Ducks' showdown at Washington looming Saturday, will he return? And how much will he be used?

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