It's a lite week in the Pac-12, with only 9 teams in action, and only 4 conference contests, as Arizona and USC, who is in the midst of regrouping after the airport parking lot firing of former coach Lane Kiffen, join Oregon St. in taking the week off.
The 'Cats and Trojans are in the long preparation period that preceeds their meeting next Thursday in the Coliseum, while the Beavers are resting up after a 4-1 start to the season, and before hitting the road for back to back Pac-12 North contests.
#12 UCLA (3-0, 1-0) and Utah (3-1, 0-1) kick off the week with an 8 PM MDT (7 PM PDT) late into the night Thursday night Pac-12 South showdown in Salt Lake City, and Fox Sports 1 will be there. Both teams had last weekend off to prepare for the mid-week game.
The Bruins blasted a bad New Mexico St. team 59-13, as Brett Hundley threw for 280 yards and 3 touchdowns, though he did also toss 2 interceptions, and Jordan James ran for 164 more yards, and an additional 2 scores.
The UCLA defense also allowed only 146 yards through the air, and had a shutout going until in the 4th quarter, and the lead was 45 points.
The Utes bounced back from their overtime loss to Oregon St. to claim their 4th consecutive Holy War, beating BYU 20-13 in Provo. Travis Wilson thew for 273 yards and 2 touchdowns, including 8 completions to Dres Anderson, for 141 yards.
But it was the Utah defense, which held the Cougars out of the end zone for nearly 55 minutes that really won the game. BYU's Taysom Hill was only able to complete 18 of 48 passes, and though he ran for 99 more, he wasn't able to account for any touchdowns.
Utah had won 2 in a row against the Bruins before UCLA turned the tables with a competitive 21-14 win last year.
Saturday's slate starts when Washington St. (3-2, 1-1) visits Strawberry Canyon to take on California (1-3, 0-1) at 1 PM PDT, and Fox Sports 1 will be there as well. It's a surprising choice of games for a premier national broadcast slot, given both the Cougs and Bears were blown away in storms, and by the best teams in the conference, last weekend in the stormy northwest.
The Cougars Couged it in their annual road game of a home game, losing 55-17 to Stanford in Seattle, and getting quarterback Connor Halliday knocked out of the game in the process.
The Cardinal shredded what had been a pretty solid Washington St. defense, which loaded up to stop the Stanford run. And the Cougs did a pretty good job of that, with no Cardinal back rushing for as much as 60 yards, though in aggregate, Stanford still ran for 238 yards.
But with the Washington St. safeties up most of the night, Kevin Hogan went over the top for 3 long touchdowns, the first 2 to Devon Cajuste, for 57 and 33 yard scores.
The Bears were obliterated about as badly by Oregon, as the Ducks flew to a 55-3 lead not 5 minutes into the second half, and floated to a 55-16 win in a monsoon in Eugene.
Oregon shook off losing De'Anthony Thomas to a sprained ankle on the opening kickoff, but California contributed considerably to their own demise. The Bears were anything but Golden, fumbling on their first 4 possessions, and committing turnovers on 5 of their first 6 series.
Cal also turned the ball over on downs 3 times, and when they did punt, it backfired as well, as Bralon Addison returned 2 of them for more Oregon touchdowns, earning himself Pac-12 Special Teams Player of the Week honors in the process.
Freshman Jared Goff, who came into the game leading the nation in passing yards was benched in the 1st quarter, after committing a pair of the fumbles, and throwing for just 11 yards.
California has won the last 8 in a row in the series, but if Halliday is healthy, it will be Washington St.'s best chance in recent times to turn the tables.
The Ducks didn't miss a beat without Thomas, as Byron Marshall ran for 130 yards and 2 touchdowns, and Thomas Tyner added another 94 yards, and another score. Marcus Mariota still threw a pair of touchdowns in the weather that wasn't even fit for a Duck, and ran for 1 as well.
The win was the 4th game in a row that Oregon has scored more than 50 points, something even their high powered offense had never done before. It's likely the streak will be extended to 5, even with Thomas out of action this week (a visit to Washington is looming next week). Last year the Ducks flew by the Buffs 70-14.
The Buffs proved to not be ready for a big time offense, as Oregon St.'s Sean Mannion threw for 6 touchdowns and 414 yards, and picked up the Pac-12 Offensive Player of the Week as well as a 44-17 win in the process.
Connor Wood did throw for 146 yards and 2 touchdowns, but 9 of his 14 completions, and 115 of those yards, as well as both scores, came in the 4th quarter, after the Beavers had gone ahead 38-3.
Colorado did appear to find a rushing threat though, as Michael Adkins ran for 98 yards.
All the non-conference games are done except for those involving Notre Dame, and the first of three involving the Domers is this week, when #22 Arizona St. (3-1, 1-1) takes on the Irish (3-2) at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, TX at 6:30 PM CDT (4:30 PM PDT). Being a Notre Dame game, its on NBC.
The Sun Devils equaled the all-time record for points scored against USC, beating the Trojans 62-41. That cost former Trojan coach Lane Kiffen his job, as USC Athletic Director fired Kiffen in the airport parking lot as the Trojans were returning home from their disaster in Tempe.
Arizona St. ran off 4 consecutive touchdowns in the 3rd quarter, after USC's Tre Madden had put the Trojans ahead 21-20 with his second of 3 scores. Both Madden, who had 128 yards rushing, and 66 in the air, and Justin Davis, who ran for 122 yards and 3 touchdowns, had huge nights for USC, but it wasn't nearly enough to overcome the explosive Sun Devil offense.
The Irish trailed all the way against Oklahoma, falling behind 7-0 less than a minute into the game, and never catching up during the Sooners' 35-21 win in South Bend.
Oklahoma topped 200 yards both in the air and on the ground against Notre Dame, and the Sooner defense held Irish quarterback Tommy Rees to just 9 completions and 104 yards passing. Rees threw more interceptions, 3, than scoring passes, 2.
The Arizona St. defense is vulnerable, but the Sun Devil offense should more than make up for it against the Irish.
The best game of the weekend is the ESPN evening national game, when #15 Washington (4-0, 1-0) visits #5 Stanford (4-0, 2-0) at 7:30 PM. It's a battle of 2 of the best rushing offenses in college football.
The Huskies trampled Arizona 31-13, behind a punishing rushing attack. Bishop Sankey ran 40 times, a Washington school record, for 161 yards and a touchdown, and Jesse Caillier backed him up with 11 more carries for 54 yards and another score.
Keith Price only completed 14 of 25 passes in the typhoon that blew into Husky Stadium, but is still 7th in the country in completion percentage.
Arizona's Ka'Deem Carey did run for 132 yards and touchdown on the Washington defense though.
The Cardinal will get David Yankee, their best offensive lineman back this week, which should help a running back committee that saw 7 Stanford players combine for 240 rushing yards in the win over Washington St.
Stanford's throwing for 322 yards on just 17 completions was especially impressive given the storm in Seattle, as the lack of a big play, deep passing game was the one thing the Cardinal had appeared to lack.
Stanford had won 6 of the last 7 games between the 2 teams before Washington upset the Cardinal 17-13 last year in Seattle.