Monday, November 4, 2013
Quick look at Week 11 in the Pac-12
By Ted Miller
Here's a quick look at Week 10 in the conference. All times are ET.
No. 3 Oregon (8-0, 5-0) at No. 5 Stanford (7-1, 5-1) 9 p.m., ESPN: Stanford leads the series, 45-30-1, including a 28-14-1 mark at home, but the Ducks have won nine of the last 11 overall meetings and four of the last five on “The Farm”. Of course, the Cardinal dealt the Ducks their only 2012 loss, 17-14 in overtime at Autzen on Nov. 17. Oregon has won 18 straight non-neutral site away games since falling, 51-42, at Stanford on Nov. 7, 2009. Stanford is 11-1 (.917) at home against opponents ranked in either the AP or USA Today Coaches polls since 2009 (3-1 vs. top 10). Stanford’s active 13-game home winning streak is the third longest in the nation behind Michigan (19) and South Carolina (15). Oregon QB Marcus Mariota has attempted a Pac-12 record 293 passes without an interception, including all 225 attempts this season. His last pick came last year against Stanford. He has passed for at least one touchdown in all 21 games of his career. The Ducks did not have a single player with 500 receiving yards last season. They already have two through eight games this year in Josh Huff (703) and Bralon Addison (609). Oregon offensive coordinator Scott Frost played quarterback for two years at Stanford under head coach Bill Walsh. Scott Frost’s brother, Steve, is the Stanford Stadium public address announcer. The two will be seated in adjacent rooms Saturday in the Stanford Stadium press box. In fact, Frost’s first collegiate touchdown pass was caught by David Shaw when Stanford played Oregon in 1994. Oregon ranks second nationally in scoring offense (55.6), rushing offense (331.5) and total offense (632.1), and fourth in turnover margin (1.63). The Ducks are seventh in the nation in scoring defense (16.9) and yards allowed per play (4.41), sixth in passing efficiency defense (101.79), and second in yards allowed per passing attempt (5.3). Stanford is 10th in the nation in run defense (103.3), 19th in scoring defense (19.4 ppg) and 33rd in pass efficiency defense.
USC (6-3, 3-2) at California (1-8, 0-6) 3 p.m., Fox: USC leads the series, which dates back to 1915 and is uninterrupted since 1926, 64-30-5 (not including the Trojans’ 2005 victory that was vacated due to NCAA penalty; original record: 65-30-5). The Trojans have not lost to the Bears since 2003, and Cal has averaged just 10.2 points in those games. USC needs one more victory to become bowl eligible. California is the only Pac-12 team that can't become bowl eligible. Trojan defensive coordinator Clancy Pendergast served in the same role at Cal the previous three seasons under Jeff Tedford. Under him, USC’s defense is among the nation’s best, ranking in the top 25 in total defense, rushing defense, scoring defense, pass efficiency defense, sacks, tackles for loss, interceptions, red zone defense, third down conversion defense and first down defense. The Bears rank in the nation’s bottom five in total defense, scoring defense and turnover margin. They have allowed nearly 530 total yards and 43 points per game.
No. 22 Arizona State (6-2, 4-1) at Utah (4-4, 1-4) 4 p.m., Pac-12 Network: Arizona State leads the series against Utah, 18-6, with a 14-3 advantage at home and a 4-3 advantage in Salt Lake City. The Sun Devils have won nine straight against the Utes, the second-longest active winning streak by one current Pac-12 program over another, though that's spread across a span of 36 seasons. The Utes last beat ASU 31-28 win in Tempe in 1976. The Sun Devils won 37-7 in Tempe in 2012. Utah co-offensive coordinator Dennis Erickson was the head coach at ASU from 2007-11, and his team beat the Utes the last time the Sun Devils visited Salt Lake City in 2011. ASU has held its last three opponents to under 100 yards rushing (Colorado, Washington and Washington State) after holding WSU to just two total yards. The last time ASU accomplished that in three straight games was in 2009. ASU is 10-1 under coach Graham when rushing for more yards than the opponent. Against Pac-12 South division teams, the Utes are 0-3 this season and 3-10 overall. Utah is 1-1 this season and 5-5 overall against the Pac-12 North. Utah has won its last 49 games when leading at halftime, which is the second-longest streak in the country behind Oregon (58). Sun Devils RB Marion Grice is No. 1 nationally in scoring (13.5), No. 11 in all purpose yards (162.25) and No. 4 in rushing TDs (12).
Colorado (3-5, 0-5) at Washington (5-3, 2-3) 8 p.m., Pac-12 Network: Washington leads the series 7-5-1, including four consecutive victories, the last two as Pac-12 foes. In last year's game, Huskies QB Keith Price threw five TD passes and the defense held the Buffaloes to just 141 yards. Huskies RB Bishop Sankey enters the week as the nation’s No. 3 rusher with 145.3 yards per game. His last time out, he rushed for a career-best 241 yards vs. California. Sankey, one of only four Huskies to surpass 1,000 yards in more than one season, also ranks No. 4 in the nation in rushing touchdowns, with 12. Colorado kicker Will Oliver has been named as one of 20 semifinalists for the 2013 Lou Groza Award, handed out annually to the nation's top kicker. Oliver has connected on 78 percent of his field goal attempts, including makes from 53 and 52 yards out, and has been perfect on extra points. Huskies QB Keith Price moved into the No. 2 spot in UW career passing yards in Arizona State game. He now has 8,122 career yards, having moved past Jake Locker (7,639) on the career chart. The UW has scored on its opening drive of the third quarter in seven of eight games this season. The Huskies have turned the ball over nine times this year, and have allowed only one of those turnovers to be converted into a touchdown. Conversely, the UW has converted seven of 11 takeaways into touchdowns. Colorado ranks 11th in the Pac-12 in scoring defense (38.1 points per game) and 10th in scoring offense (26.4 ppg), but those totals are significantly better than 2012 (46 ppg and 17.8 ppg)
No. 19 UCLA (6-2, 3-2) at Arizona (6-2, 3-2) 10 p.m., ESPN: UCLA leads the series 20-15-2, but the Bruins are looking to win for the first time in Tucson since 2003. In fact, the Bruins have lost five of the last six matchups overall and have lost the last four meetings played in the desert. UCLA has played 18 true freshman so far this season, a school record and the most in the nation (Texas A&M 17), and started seven true freshmen position players (three on the offensive line) in each of the last two games (at Oregon, Colorado) and also has a true freshman punter. Arizona RB Ka'Deem Carey leads the nation in rushing with 153.1 yards per game. He also has scored 10 TDs in seven games (he was suspended for the season opener). The Wildcats are second in the Pac-12 with 275.4 yards rushing per game. UCLA QB Brett Hundley had his 10th career 300-yard total offense game against Colorado (ran for 72 and passed for 273). Hundley’s dad (also named Brett) attended the Arizona and was on the football team as a running back in the mid-1980s. The Wildcats rank 11th in the conference in passing efficiency and have thrown the fewest TD passes (nine), though QB B.J. Denker has thrown seven of those in the last four games with just one interception. The Bruins are 13-0 under head coach Jim Mora when ahead at the half. UCLA OLB Anthony Barr has 34.5 tackles for loss in his two seasons as a defensive player. He has had at least 0.5 tackles for loss in all but one of his 22 games as a LB. He is second in the nation in forced fumbles at 0.50/g; Barr is ranked seventh in TFLs 1.6/g; Barr is 10th in the nation in fumbles recovered (0.38).