Tuesday, September 4, 2012
Pac-12 power rankings: Week 2
By Ted Miller
There is more movement than we expected with the power rankings, as number of teams underwhelmed in Week 1.
The theme this week? "OK, but let's see what you do Saturday."
You can review the Week 1 power rankings here.
1. USC: A dominant win over Hawaii. And no major injuries. Just what USC wanted.
2. Oregon: The Ducks actually closed the perceived distance between them and USC with quarterback Marcus Mariota's performance. While it was easy to suspect he would be more than a game manager, he pretty much proved it against overmatched Arkansas State.
3. Utah: The Utes did what they needed to do, dominating a bad Northern Colorado team on both sides of the ball. It wasn't pretty all the time on offense, but it was effective.
4. UCLA: It was hardly a perfect, or even a very good, performance at Rice, but the Bruins offense rolled up huge numbers with redshirt freshman quarterback Brett Hundley and the defense pitched a second-half shut out on the road. Now let's see what happens with Nebraska.
5. Washington: The Huskies looked shaky after a strong start against San Diego State, but it was the offense more than the defense that disappointed. The defense, in fact, was the pleasant surprise of the game. Now let's see what happens at LSU.
6. Stanford: The Cardinal gets a big demotion for a poor effort at home against a weak San Jose State team. Part of that demotion is the mediocrity of perceived strengths: The defense and the running game. The Cardinal can move back up if it gets back to its physical ways against Duke on Saturday.
7. Arizona: Quarterback Matt Scott put up huge numbers and the defense exceeded expectations -- albeit exceedingly low expectations -- in an overtime win over Toledo. A decent win, but it didn't provide much reason for hope against Oklahoma State on Saturday.
8. Arizona State: The Sun Devils not only dominated Northern Arizona, they turned in a pretty clean sheet -- one turnover, four penalties for 30 yards. The next two games are measuring sticks with Illinois at home and Missouri on the road.
9. Oregon State: The Beavers didn't play so their debut will be Saturday at home against Wisconsin. Whether the postponement of the opener proves to be a negative or positive will be based on how the Beavers look against the Badgers, who whipped them 35-zip last year.
10. California: The Bears celebrated the opening of their renovated stadium by getting pushed around in a 31-24 loss to Nevada. The disappointing part about it was it's impossible to call it a fluke.
11. Washington State: The Mike Leach Renaissance won't happen overnight, at least based on a flat performance at BYU. The Cougars of Provo looked pretty good, but the way the Cougars of Pullman reacted to early adversity is the real problem.
12. Colorado: Colorado State looked like a game that was a must-win for bowl hopes. So those hopes took a major hit, as the Rams asserted themselves in the second half and seemed to physically handle the Buffaloes on both sides of the ball.