Pac-12 Game of the Week - Notre Dame at Arizona State - 12:30 p.m. ABC
JF: This one has become huge in the past few weeks, essentially becoming a Playoff contender elimination game. The Irish for whatever reason seem to play non-USC Pac-12 teams very well, but the Sun Devils have beaten three-straight big physical, defensive-driven teams in a row and get the Irish in Tempe. This could be the national game of the week.
AK: Huge consequences for the playoff race. The loser can count themselves almost out, and can by proxy make other teams (Florida State, Pac-12 champion) look a slight bit worse come playoff judgment time. ASU's defensive weakness is strong pro-style offense, so I think Notre Dame should be able to put up the points with the Sun Devils. The question is whether the Notre Dame defense has any idea of how to figure out how to stop the Sun Devils in the desert--the Irish are hemorrhaging points, including giving up 39 to Navy!
2. Oregon at Utah - 7 p.m. ESPN
JF: This is likely the last chance for the Ducks to get upset in the regular season. The Ducks are fresh off of bashing a Stanford team that has a lot in common with Utah, but there are some variables here that give some hope for the Utes to make a game of it, most obviously having it be in Salt Lake City. If the strong Utah front seven can slow the Ducks and their offense can find a way to score some points, this could be a very good one.
AK: I'd be scared if I were the Ducks. Utah's front seven has taken the mantle from Stanford's as the most physical and imposing in the Pac-12, and they are extremely tough and imposing. The big question is if Utah is capable of holding Oregon to under 30 points, because I think that this is all this Ute offense is capable of playing at peak level. Oregon has been very good at keeping most opponents out of the end zone and will be happy to let Utah grind down the field and settle for 3s.
3. UCLA at Washington - 4 p.m. FOX Sports 1
JF: I would not be surprised if this actually ends up being the best game of the weekend. Two teams that are talented, but flawed and inconsistent meeting up in Husky Stadium in a game that both need to win to have a hope for living up to preseason aspirations. Extra points for it being Jim Mora's first game as a coach in Husky Stadium, the home base of his "dream job."
AK: It's the Pac-12 Two-Way Player of the Year showcase! I doubt either Shaq Thompson or Myles Jack actually win the Defensive Player of the Year (Nate Orchard and Scooby Wright have been that good) but it should be fun to see what either team is capable of in Seattle with their best talents. This is exactly the type of game the Bruins usually win, then nearly lose, so they'll probably win by 3 like they always do. I shudder to think how UCLA's offensive line is going to handle that Washington front seven though.
4. Colorado at Arizona - 5 p.m. Pac-12 Network
JF: The Buffs are good enough to where they should win a Pac-12 game, but as time goes by it keeps looking more and more like they won't. However, Arizona looked very beatable against UCLA and they cannot afford to overlook Colorado at all. Watch out if the Wildcats looks past Colorado.
AK: Colorado probably gets whipped, but the Buffs have not quit in any of their losses this season and might catch bruised Arizona with their pants down. The Buffs offense is no joke and probably matches up well. I have no idea how that defense stops Anu Solomon though, especially on the road.
5. Washington State at Oregon State - 1 p.m. Pac-12 Network
JF: A game between a team that seems like it might just want the season to be over and a team that no offense intended, might be the least-interesting in the conference doesn't seem like a must-see. However, seeing if Luke Falk can get something going in Washington State's air raid and seeing Oregon State battle to save any hope of getting to a bowl game are reasons to tune in.
AK: Two teams in various states of misery. Oregon State probably has to win this if they want any shot at a bowl. Washington State just wants to win football games at this point with Luke Falk as they turn the page to 2015. This is low on my list of to-watch games, because I don't see high quality football being played here outside of Sean Mannion throwing downfield bullets.