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Pac-12 The Good, The Bad and The Unknown week 10: Arizona State and Oregon look like division winners

We learned a lot in this week of Pac-12 action.

Ralph Freso

The Good

Arizona State's toughness - The Sun Devils won their third-straight grind-it-out game against a tough opponent with a nasty defense. I'll be honest in that I was wrong in thinking that the Sun Devils would take a step back this year, having to rebuild their defense, because the Sun Devils are showing that they can still punch it out with anyone.

Todd Graham - Following up on my first point, Graham might be the best overall coach in the conference. He has the Sun Devils playing great football, completely rebuilt a defense on the fly, dealt with losing his star quarterback and has the Sun Devils one win away from becoming a national title contender.

Oregon's efficiency - The Ducks aren't as explosive as they were in the Chip Kelly years, but they are damn efficient. They are especially deadly on third and fourth down which deflates opponents' defenses maybe even more than long touchdown runs and was where Stanford had controlled them in recent seasons, but that was far from the case this year.

Oregon's Playoff chances - The dominoes keep falling for the Ducks nationally and other than maybe Arizona State in a potential Pac-12 Championship Game match-up, I don't see anyone left on their schedule that has that combination of scoring ability and defense to take them down right now.

UCLA's defense coming alive - UCLA's defense performing so poorly while being so talented was one of the biggest mysteries to me of the 2014 season thus far, but they played their best game of the season in snuffing out Arizona in the Rose Bowl. The Bruins could do some serious damage in November if their defense can keep playing like they did Saturday.

Brett Hundley - It has been a tough season for Hundley, but I loved what he did against Arizona - passing the ball efficiently and putting the game in his hands on the ground to give the Bruins the edge in a must-win game.

Daniel Lasco and Cal's ground game - Lasco and the Cal ground game in general made the Bears offense so much more dangerous and pushed them over the edge against Oregon State in a game that gets them atop the heap in the bottom half of the North.

Cody Kessler - Kessler bombed the Cougars with ease and is quietly putting together an excellent season. I give him additional points for a nice move by giving Connor Halliday respect when he was still on the field with his tough, tough injury.

Nelson Agholor - Agholor has had a bit of quiet season, but he blew up against Washington State - getting the Trojans started with a long punt return for a touchdown and then putting the Cougars down with a long catch-and-run for a touchdown.

Shaq Thompson - Thompson is everything to the Huskies. He might have had the best game of any running back in the Pac-12 Saturday and he is a god damned linebacker. Thompson should be getting 10 times the hype that Myles Jack did last year.

The Bad

Colorado's chances of winning a Pac-12 game - And it is sad. Mike MacIntyre has done wonders with the Buffs and they are a solid team, but getting a Pac-12 win this season is going to be tough for them with their remaining schedule looking brutal. This is made worse by the fact that they easily could have three conference wins right now had they gotten some breaks.

Connor Halliday's injury - Halliday's brutal injury was tough to watch and it is unfortunate that we aren't going to get to watch him finish off a fantastic senior season.

Stanford's scoring ability - Watching the Cardinal try to compete with a team that could score against their defense had to be painful for Stanford fans. They were able to move the ball a bit against a not very good Oregon defense, but their struggles on offense continue to make them very easy to defend in the red zone and they clearly had almost no shot in the game once Oregon showed they were going to put up a good amount of points in the game.

Arizona in the Rose Bowl - For whatever reason Rich Rodriguez doesn't seem to be able to get his potent offense off of the ground in the Rose Bowl as the Wildcat offense once again got shut down by the Bruins in Pasadena.

Utah's passing game - Throwing for less than 60 yards in this day and age of college football is simply inexcusable, especially in a game that goes to overtime. The Utes have no shot of upsetting Oregon next week and staying in the South race if they can't find a way to throw the ball with more success.

The Unknown

Can anyone stay with Oregon? The Ducks just dashed their biggest nemesis and now their biggest hurdle in the regular season appears arrive next week in the form of a team that is basically the one that they just easily dismissed, but with much less talent. Right now, it would take a major surprise for anyone in the Pac-12 to upset the Ducks.

Can Arizona State become a major Playoff contender? The Sun Devils are alone atop the South and with Notre Dame coming to town, are a win away from becoming a serious Playoff contender. Can they take care of a program that seems to give everyone in the Pac-12 outside of USC fits?

Are the LA schools back? The Bruins got a very impressive win over Arizona and the Trojans blew out Washington State on the road while a Utah loss put both LA schools just a game behind Arizona State for the top of the South with the Bruins holding the tie-breaker against the Sun Devils. Can one of these teams put it together enough to have a legit shot at winning the South if they win their showdown in a couple of weeks?