Here are some things to watch this week in the Pac-12 Conference:
GAME OF THE WEEK: Oregon took control of the North Division when it rallied for a 35-31 victory at Washington. The 11th-ranked Ducks face another difficult challenge Saturday when they host Washington State. The Cougars have a four-game winning streak over the Ducks and snapped a three-game losing streak with a win against Colorado. This is a matchup of the two players that are the top contenders for the conference’s Offensive Player of the Year. Oregon’s Justin Herbert is one of only two QBs in FBS with 20 or more touchdown passes and one or fewer interceptions. Washington State’s Anthony Gordon leads the nation in passing yards (2,918) and has five 400-yard games this season.
MATCHUP OF THE WEEK: USC is tied for the lead in the South Division but has the inside track to the conference title game with its win over Utah. The Trojans (4-3, 3-1) are still seeking their first road win of the season going into Friday night’s game at Colorado (3-4, 1-3). Freshman QB Kedon Slovis has completed 73.6% of his passes, which is sixth nationally. The Buffaloes (3-4, 1-3) have dropped three straight including their last two by an average of 36.5 points. RB Alex Fontenot had 11 carries for 105 yards last week at Washington State.
INSIDE THE NUMBERS: The last time Stanford started three quarterbacks in a season until this year was 1974. … Arizona and Stanford meet Saturday and have started 12 freshmen this season. Stanford leads the conference with seven, which is tied for second nationally, and Arizona has five. … Utah’s defense has allowed just 30 points during the second half. … California has held 14 straight opponents under 25 points, which is the longest active streak. … California LB Evan Weaver leads the nation with 15.0 tackles per game.
PLAYER TO WATCH: Washington State running back Max Borghi. The sophomore is the first Cougars running back to have three 100-yard games in a season since Jerome Harrison had eight in 2005. He matched a career high with nine catches last week against Colorado and has four games this year with 100 or more all-purpose yards.
UPSET WATCH: No. 24 Arizona State played its worst game of the season last week at No. 12 Utah. The Sun Devils (5-2, 2-2) go on the road for the second straight week and face UCLA (2-5, 2-2), which played its best game of the season at Stanford.
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