The Pac-12 North might be one of the best divisions in the Football Bowl Subdivision. I know that statement might make some folks in SEC country vomit in their mouths a little. But outside of California right now, which is in the first year of the Sonny Dykes era, the North is quite competitive.
Oregon and Stanford are still top-10 teams. Oregon State is heading into the time of year when it typically gets hot, even after the loss to Eastern Washington. Washington is much improved so far this season, and Washington State is playing hard every week and is in more games this season.
It’s worth monitoring the situation the rest of the season to see what comes of it. Let’s take a spin around the conference.
UCLA 34, Utah 27: Brett Hundley beat Utah singlehandedly on Thursday night. Well, that may not be 100 percent accurate, but it is close. Hundley threw for one touchdown, ran for another and also caught a touchdown pass in the victory. He finished with 303 yards of total offense. Utah’s quarterback Travis Wilson threw six interceptions in the loss.
Washington State 44, California 22: Washington State still can’t seem to run the ball/chooses not to run the ball, but it hasn’t mattered lately, as quarterback Connor Halliday threw for 521 yards and three touchdowns. Cal quarterback Jared Goff threw for 504 yards, 216 of them going to wide receiver Chris Harper. Cal’s only win this season was against FCS Portland State.
Oregon 57, Colorado 16: Oregon quarterback Marcus Mariota still has not played a full game this season, but he hasn’t needed to. Colorado went up 10-8 early in the first quarter. Oregon then scored 21 straight points to assert control quite quickly. This week against Washington might be the first game where Oregon will be tested.
Notre Dame 37, Arizona State 34: The Sun Devils had a devil of a time with the Fighting Irish in a neutral site game in Arlington, Texas, as they lost a back and forth game with Notre Dame. The Sun Devils turned the ball over three times, including two interception tossed by Taylor Kelly. The second interception was returned for a touchdown with 1:08 left in the game.
Stanford 31, Washington 28: Ty Montgomery made quite an impact Saturday night in Palo Alto. He opened the game by returning Washington’s opening kickoff 99 yards for a touchdown, and closed the first half with a 39 yard touchdown reception. He finished the game with 290 all-purpose yards and those two touchdowns. Stanford led wire to wire, but Washington fought hard all game until Keith Price’s final pass was ruled incomplete on replay review.
Player of the Week: Keith Price, Washington. Price completed 33 for 48 passes for 350 yards with two touchdowns and one interception. Yes, his team ultimately lost the game. But Price made several key plays with his feet, helping to extend plays and drives with his decision-making and physical skills. He also managed to do this with an injured thumb. It was a gritty effort and demonstrated exactly how far he has come from last year.