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Pacific Takes Pac-12 power rankings 9/4: top teams hold steady

Oregon, Utah, and Washington still look like the Pac-12’s best.

NCAA Football: Eastern Washington at Washington Jennifer Buchanan-USA TODAY Sports
  1. Washington 1-0 (Last week: 1) - The Huskies, and most-importantly Jacob Eason, did as much as they could to instill confidence against Eastern Washington. Eastern is usually one of, if not the best, FCS team in the nation so a seamless win with Eason showing out was big for Washington. Next week: Cal - no time for the Huskies, and Eason, to rest as they face off against Cal and their world class defense that led them to an upset of the Huskies last season.
  2. Utah 1-0 (Last week: 2) - The Utes did what they needed to do, taking care of BYU on the road in what was an underrated tough game. They looked just like they did last year and that’s a good thing. Next week: Northern Illinois - The Utes won a slugfest last year at NIU, but I expect them to have an easier time this year in Salt Lake City.
  3. Oregon 0-1 (Last week: 3) - No shame in Oregon losing a tough one to Auburn in Texas. The Ducks still look like they should be right there with Washington and Utah. They just need to be able to bounce back and they’re going to have to win a couple tough games on the road to win the conference. Next week: Nevada - the Ducks can’t take this week off after a brutal contest last Saturday as Nevada is strong, beating Purdue in their opener.
  4. Washington State 1-0 (Last week: 4) - Like Washington, the Cougars did everything they could to impress against a low-level opponent. Anthony Gordon looked electric as their new quarterback, their receivers were great, and their defense tight. Next week: Northern Colorado - It should be more warm up for the Cougars as they look to get to 2-0.
  5. Stanford 1-0 (Last week: 5) - The Cardinal scored a quietly-impressive win, downing Northwestern 17-7. The Stanford defense looked stiff and that could go a long way toward them getting back to their old ways. Next week: at USC - USC losing JT Daniels makes this a much-easier game for Stanford, but it looks like the Cardinal will be without KJ Costello again, so it should be a tough game.
  6. Cal 1-0 (Last week: 6) - The Bears are still the best non-Top 25 team in the conference even though they weren’t great against UCDavis, especially on offense. The Bears still need to find some kind of spark on offense if they want to climb the Pac-12 ladder. Next week: at Washington - The Bears get a very difficult Pac-12 opener in just week two, playing at Washington, who should be fired up given the Bears upset them last year.
  7. Arizona State 1-0 (Last week: 7) - The Sun Devils looked good against Kent State. That’s not saying much, but it was good to get Jayden Daniels broken in and they still look like the team with the best shot in the South for taking down Utah. Next week: Sacramento State - The Sun Devils should get another valuable week to break in Daniels and their new starters at every other position.
  8. USC 1-0 (Last week: 9) - JT Daniels’ aforementioned injury is even tougher for the Trojans as I thought they were looking good in their new air raid offense with him. Now almost any win is going to be a challenge for the Trojans. Next week: Stanford - The Trojans get a break in getting Stanford without Costello, but let’s see how good they will be without Daniels for an entire game against a top Pac-12 opponent.
  9. UCLA 0-1 (Last week: 8) - The Bruins looked rough against Cincinnati, but Cincinnati is pretty good and it was a road game. I think they can start to turn things around. Next week: San Diego State - the Bruins get a chance to turns things back to the positive against a San Diego State team that didn’t look good on offense in week one either.
  10. Colorado 1-0 (Last week: 10) - The Buffs showed well by downing Colorado State. Their offense should give other Pac-12 teams trouble all season. They just need to show they can play tough D. Next week: Nebraska - The Buffs and Mel Tucker get a chance to make a major statement when Nebraska comes to town.
  11. Oregon State 0-1 (Last week: 12) - I gave the Beavers the slight edge over Arizona. Yes, they got shelled by Oklahoma State, but Oklahoma State is good and I think the Beavers will be hard to stop all season. Next week: at Hawaii - the Beavers need to avoid being the second Pac-12 team to go out to Hawaii to get beat.
  12. Arizona 0-1 (Last week: 11) - The Wildcats just need to start winning some games to get back out of the cellar. Next week: Northern Arizona - the Wildcats can get back on their feet this week against an FCS opponent.