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Bottom 11: Week Two- The PAC is back!

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Who is good enough to be second best?

Colorado v Nebraska Photo by Steven Branscombe/Getty Images

BOTTOM 11

WEEK TWO

We all know Oregon has the best fans, atmosphere and mascot, so in this weekly article we rank the other PAC-12 schools. Think of it like a power ranking, but incredibly biased and fueled by pettiness, insecurity, hate and fear.

Rest assured, the huskies will always be ranked at the bottom of the bottom.


No. 12 - washington huskies (1-1)

North Dakota v Washington Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images

OPPONENT: Home against North Dakota Fighting Hawks

RESULT: Win, 45-3

As always, the hapless huskies come in at the bottom of the Bottom 11. After losing a close one to Auburn, the sun dodgers expected to return home for an easy win over an FCS opponent, and in the end they did. However, at halftime the score was an unsettling 17-0, and veteran QB Jake Browning looked mediocre at best (23/37, 313 YDS, 2 TD, 2 INT).

Next week’s game in Salt Lake City could create some serious quarterback controversy in Seattle should they lose or look unimpressive in a win. The Utes offense is straight bad, but their defense appears to be one of the best in the PAC-12. If Browning turns in another pedestrian performance, fans will be clamoring for redshirt freshman Jake Haener to make an appearance, especially after his cameo in the win over the Fighting Hawks (7/7, 110 yards, 1 TD).

NEXT UP: @ Utah Utes


No. 11 - ARIZONA WILDCATS (0-2)

NCAA Football: Arizona at Houston Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

OPPONENT: @ Houston Cougars

RESULT: Loss, 45-18

Kevin Sumlin doubled down on his ‘let’s make Khalil Tate a pocket passer’ approach, and it failed. After their loss to BYU in which they threw the ball 34 times, the Wildcats elected to throw the ball 45 times against Houston.

The 45-18 score looks better than the Wildcats played; the Cougars had a 31-0 lead at the half. The real question is how long will this experiment last? It’s one thing to develop Tate’s passing ability, but giving the Nation’s best rushing quarterback 15 carries in two games is bound to end in disaster for Sumlin.

NEXT UP: vs Southern Utah Thunderbirds


No. 10 - UCLA BRUINS (0-2)

NCAA Football: UCLA at Oklahoma Mark D. Smith-USA TODAY Sports

OPPONENT: @ No. 6 Oklahoma Sooners

RESULT: Loss, 49-21

You know things are bad when a 49-21 loss is a better result than expected. There’s not much to be said about Chip Kelly’s second game (and second loss) at UCLA. True-freshman Dorian Thompson-Robinson seems like someone who can develop in Kelly’s offense, and there’s no reason to believe that Kelly wont eventually be successful in Westwood. However, should they lose to Fresno State this Saturday, the horror of a winless season could be a reality for the Bruins.

NEXT UP: vs Fresno State Bulldogs


No. 9 - UTAH UTES (2-0)

NCAA Football: Weber State at Utah Jeff Swinger-USA TODAY Sports

OPPONENT: @ Northern Illinois Huskies

RESULT: Win, 17-6

Yes, the Utes won on the road. Yes, it appears their defense is top of the PAC-12. But Utes fans should fear the beginning of conference play due to a disorganized offense. Utah was held scoreless for the entire first half against Northern Illinois, and it took a last second pick-six by Chase Hansen to put the game away.

Now they face a different group of huskies. The Utes have a chance against the preseason PAC-12 favorite, but it will require zero turnovers, near perfect defense, and a better performance from QB Tyler Huntley. One thing’s for sure, every Duck fan will be rooting for Utah this Saturday!

NEXT UP: vs #10 washington huskies


No. 8 - USC TROJANS (1-1)

USC v Stanford Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

OPPONENT: @ #10 Stanford Cardinal

RESULT: Loss, 17-3

The Trojans are the first team with a PAC-12 loss, as the Cardinal basically sat on them for four quarters. JT Daniels was not entirely terrible in his conference debut, but the Stanford defense took away the run game, and the true freshman was understandably not able to will his team to a win... or even a touchdown.

USC has a great opportunity to win back some respect, by beating another forever-over-hyped foe, Texas.

NEXT UP: @ Texas Longhorns


No. 7 - OREGON STATE BEAVERS (1-1)

NCAA Football: Oregon State at Ohio State Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

OPPONENT: Home against Southern Utah Thunderbirds

RESULT: Win, 48-25

The Beavers won a game! Something they haven’t done since September 2nd of last year against Portland State (0-12). Next week against Nevada will be their Super Bowl, seeing how that could be their last winnable game of the season. Then again, who knows what PAC-12 madness awaits us.

NEXT UP: @ Nevada Wolf Pack


No. 6 - WASHINGTON STATE COUGARS (2-0)

NCAA Football: San Jose State at Washington State James Snook-USA TODAY Sports

OPPONENT: Home against San Jose State Spartans

RESULT: Win, 31-0

Washington State continues its transformation into a defensive-minded team. San Jose State only amassed 100 yards in the air and nine yards on the ground. Of course, the blanking of the Spartans should be taken with a grain of salt, as SJSU is a very not good team. It will be interesting to see what Oregon is able to do against the Spartans as a sort of unreliable measure of how the Ducks stack up with the rest of the conference.

NEXT UP: vs Eastern Washington Eagles


No. 5 - CALIFORNIA GOLDEN BEARS (2-0)

NCAA Football: California at Brigham Young Jeff Swinger-USA TODAY Sports

OPPONENT: @ BYU Cougars

RESULT: Win, 21-18

Justin Wilcox has yet to lose to an out-of-conference foe. California’s offense still has some questions, but their defense has proven themselves as a reliable unit. Last year’s starter Ross Bowers rode the bench after a poor showing in week one, making way for redshirt freshman Chase Garbers. Eventually, the Golden Bears shaky offense will cost them a close game (just like it did several times last season), but for now, Cal has successfully strung together drives when they are most needed late in the game.

NEXT UP: vs Idaho State Bengals


No. 4 - STANFORD CARDINAL (2-0)

NCAA Football: Southern California at Stanford Neville E. Guard-USA TODAY Sports

OPPONENT: Home against #17 USC Trojans

RESULT: Win, 17-3

The only real question surrounding the Cardinal right now is not if they will win but how they will win. In week one, San Diego State successfully took Bryce Love out of the equation (18 carries for 29 yards), so Stanford burned them in the air to coast to a 21-point victory.

Against the Trojans, KJ Costello and JJ Arcega-Whiteside came back to earth and struggled to rekindle their previous offensive magic, so the Stanford defense stepped up and completely dismantled the Trojans’ offensive line. Bryce Love also found his stride, earning 136 yards and a touchdown on 22 carries.

While it’s only been two weeks, Stanford appears to be the best in the West, and if anyone hopes to dethrone them they will need to find success on both sides of the ball.

NEXT UP: vs UC Davis Aggies


No. 3 - COLORADO BUFFALOES (2-0)

Colorado v Nebraska Photo by Steven Branscombe/Getty Images

OPPONENT: @ Nebraska Cornhuskers

RESULT: Win, 33-28

After much contemplation, I’ve decided to place the Buffaloes at number three. Luckily, Steven Montez and company don’t give a crap about what some sports writer think, after beating the Cornhuskers in front of a massive home crowd. These ancient rivals fought hard in one of the most entertaining games of the day. Ultimately, it came down to Nebraska’s sloppy play (losing the turnover battle 3-0, and committing 11 penalties for 95 yards) and a heroic last drive by (PTSD alert) Steven Montez for the win.

Colorado was picked by many to be last in the PAC-12 South, but a quick look at their schedule reveals a clear path back to the conference championship game.

NEXT UP: vs New Hampshire Wildcats


No. 2 - Your Bottom 11 Champion...

ARIZONA STATE SUN DEVILS (2-0)

Michigan State v Arizona State Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images

OPPONENT: Home against #15 Michigan State Spartans

RESULT: Win, 16-13

As the commentators stated over and over again, Herm Edwards was deemed an insane hire by ASU due to his lack of college football coaching experience, his recent history as a commentator, and his folksy, outspoken energy.

Two weeks into the season, fellow new hires Chip Kelly and Kevin Sumlin have zero wins while Edwards is undefeated and has a win over a top-25 team. His game planning was masterful, employing a perfect blend of classic Sun Devil blitzing and a new wrinkle of a thing called “covering the pass.” He also showed an impressive ability to take what the defense gave him, passing when they loaded the box and running to close out the game. His clock management was especially impressive in the final minutes of the game, resembling a chess match with Spartans coach Mark Dantonio.

Quarterback Manny Wilkins was by no means perfect, but he’s experienced and knows how to keep his team in competitive striking distance. It also helps that he can regularly target quite possibly the best receiver in the nation, N’Keal Harry.

This team is the embodiment of PAC-12 chaos, and they wouldn’t have it any other way.

NEXT UP: @ San Diego State Aztecs