Some quick notes to get you through the hours until Saturday. Many thanks to ESPN Stats & Information.
The Pac-10 continues to be the No. 1 ranked conference according to the Sagarin Ratings. Five Pac-10 teams are ranked in the Top 25 -- Oregon and Stanford are Nos. 1 and 2 -- and the eight toughest schedules belong to Pac-10 teams.
Oregon will clinch the Pac-10 title and a BCS bowl berth -- Rose or national title game -- if California beats Stanford. The Ducks are off this week.
If Oregon ends up winning the Pac-10 and playing for the national title, then the Rose Bowl would be obligated to take the highest ranked of Boise State and TCU, assuming one of them is in the final BCS top 12 but not ranked 1 or 2. If one of those teams is playing for the national title, then the Rose has no obligation to take a non-AQ this season.
This will be the 113th Big Game between California and Stanford, and the Bears have dominated lately. They have won seven of the last eight in the rivalry and in only one of those eight meetings have they allowed more than 20 points. Stanford hasn’t won at Cal since 2000.
This game matches up a high-scoring offense coming off its lowest output of the season against a team that HELD a high-scoring offense its lowest output of the season. Stanford was held to 17 points, by far its lowest point total of the season (previous low: 31 against Oregon), last week at Arizona State. Cal held Oregon to 15 points, 40 points below its scoring average (54.7 PPG entering) last week.
Last week was the first game this season where Andrew Luck didn’t throw a TD pass. It will be interesting to see how much pressure he gets in the pocket: Stanford is tied for first in FBS in sacks allowed (0.4 per game) but Cal is tied for sixth in FBS in sacks (3.0 per game).
If Cal loses this game, it will have to win next week against Washington to become bowl eligible. The Bears haven’t missed out on a bowl game since 2002, Jeff Tedford’s first season as coach. A loss would also give them six losses on the season, tying the team’s most under Tedford.
USC has lost four in a row in the state of Oregon.
The Trojans have played in five games decided by three or fewer points this season, the first time that's happened in school history. They are 3-2 in those games.
A week after giving up four sacks at Arizona State, the Trojans didn't give up any at Arizona, which had been averaging three sacks per game.
The Trojans have won 32 of their last 35 meetings with Oregon State, but the Beavers have won two of the last four. In 2000, Oregon State beat USC and ended a Pac-10 record 26-game losing streak in the series.
Oregon State lost its first fumble of the season against Washington State. The Beavers had three turnovers against Washington State; they had just 12 turnovers in their previous 20 games. Still, their seven turnovers this season remain tied for fewest in the nation.
Beavers running back Jacquizz Rodgers currently ranks 12th on the Pac-10 career rushing list with 3,589 yards. The junior needs 101 rushing yards to break into the top 10. He needs 37 yards to eclipse former Beaver Steven Jackson and move into 11th place.
The Beavers had just two sacks in their first three games. They've had 23 in their last six games.