Pac-12 Game of the Week - Oregon at Stanford - Thursday 6 PM ESPN
AK - Game of the week of the century. This is a battered Cardinal team, but unlike any other Pac-12 team they have the confidence to know they can slow Oregon down. Can Stanford impose their will on their home turf?
JF - Stanford seems like the good world's last hope of keeping Oregon out of the BCS Championship game. The Cardinal are the only team in the Pac-12 to be able to stop the Ducks in a long time and their size and strength up front on defense matches up about as well as conference team can. If the Cardinal defense can play as well as they did in 2012, and keep it a low-scoring game while holding on for four full quarters, we could get another classic between the two best teams in the Pac-12.
2. UCLA at Arizona - Saturday 7 PM ESPN
AK - UCLA isn't quite in early season form, which makes them vulnerable on any sort of road trip. The Wildcats are always a trap with Rich Rod and that offense can get rolling in the desert. Could the Bruins get caught looking ahead?
JF - The best game on Saturday this week, these teams are actually tied in the Pac-12 South standings and Arizona's running game is becoming a monster. I think the Bruins are better than the Wildcats, but it's on the road, the Bruins have looked shaky against quality competition lately and Rich Rodriguez' offense has the potential to win a shootout with just about anybody, especially a team that has a shaky of a defense as the Bruin.
3. Arizona State at Utah - Saturday 1 PM Pac-12 Network
AK - ASU finally proved they can win on the road, and now they face a Utah team that can beat no one in the Pac-12 other than Stanford. That being said, Salt Lake City is no easy place to win.
JF - Upset watch. I think the Utes may have already spent their upset allotment against Stanford, but the Sun Devils are still questionable on the road and the Utes have at least challenged everybody who has come to Salt Lake City. If Travis Wilson can play well in the face of a fearsome Arizona State front seven, this one could end up being a shootout.
4. USC at Cal - Saturday 12 PM FOX
AK - Cal looked semi-competitive for the first time in two months! Unfortunately for them, USC looks like they're peaking like Trojan teams of old in November. Will be tough for the Bears to break a decade-long streak of futility.
JF - Cal showed signs of life against Arizona, but the Trojans have a defense that is quite a bit better than the one that the Wildcats brought to town. Still, the Trojans are an unpredictable bunch that I have the feeling are going to have a game where they start to underwhelm again and if the Bears can somehow find a way to keep pressure off of Goff, they might have a chance.
5. Colorado at Washington Saturday 5 PM Pac-12 Network
AK - Buffs are starting to look like a decent enough football team. Unfortunately for them, even good Pac-12 teams usually get dogged in Seattle.
JF - The Buffs are getting better and the Huskies are well getting... well, staying the same I guess and as long as they are stagnant under Steve Sarkisian, I'm not surprised to see anything happen in their games, including possibly getting into a tight one with Colorado in Seattle.