There were no big upsets in the Pac-12 this week, but there was a minor one. Also, the Buffaloes finally got back on the winning track. Here’s how the conference played out this weekend.
No.2 Oregon vs. Washington State: Oregon W 62-38
Oregon redshirt sophomore quarterback Marcus Mariota continued his Heisman campaign by throwing for 327 yards and two touchdowns as well as rushing for 67 yards and another score. Mariota did have a pair of fumbles but those are the only blemishes on what has so far been a perfect résumé. The Cougars decided to forego playing defense against the Ducks, allowing 719 yards, and instead tried to keep up with them. That didn’t work too well. Washington State redshirt junior quarterback Connor Halliday threw the ball a staggering 89 times, completing 58 of them for 557 yards and four touchdowns. However, Halliday also threw four interceptions against one of the best defensive backfields in the country.
No.9 UCLA vs. No. 13 Stanford: Stanford W 24-10
Before this game, UCLA was averaging 45 points per game, but they hadn’t played Stanford’s defense yet. The Cardinal defense smothered one of the top offenses in the country and held the Bruins to only 266 yards on the day. UCLA redshirt sophomore quarterback and fringe Heisman Trophy contender Brett Hundley was held to only 192 passing yards and one touchdown with two interceptions. Stanford also did a good job controlling the clock and keeping the potent UCLA offense on the sidelines, controlling time of possession 37:11 to 22:49. Cardinal senior running back Tyler Gaffney was the workhorse for Stanford, carrying the ball 36 times for 171 yards and two touchdowns.
Oregon State vs. Cal: OSU W 49-17
OSU junior quarterback Sean Mannion continues to light up scoreboards with his arm and he did so again against Cal. Mannion threw for 481 yards and four touchdowns as the Beavers blew the Golden Bears out from the start. When Mannion dropped back he continued to get the ball to junior wideout Brandin Cooks, who caught 13 passes for 282 yards and a touchdown. For Cal, things just keep getting worse and worse. The Golden Bears used two different quarterbacks but neither were particularly effective. Freshman Jared Goff was 21 of 31 for 220 yards with an interception and freshman Zach Kline threw for only 71 yards but had two touchdowns and one interception. The Golden Bears’ loss is their 11th straight to a FBS opponent.
Utah vs. Arizona: Arizona W 35-24
The Utes were hoping to carry the momentum from the win over then-No. 5 Stanford into their game with the Wildcats. That wasn’t quite the case, though. UA junior running back Ka’Deem Carey ran for 236 yards and a touchdown, the second-best rushing yardage performance of Carey’s career. The Utes lost their starting quarterback, sophomore Travis Wilson, to a hand injury in the first half and had to go to sophomore Adam Schulz, who passed for 142 yards and a touchdown.
USC vs. Notre Dame: ND W 14-10
The Fighting Irish continued their winning ways against the Pac-12 South by knocking off the Trojans on Saturday night in a defensive slugfest. Notre Dame managed to win despite losing the yardage battle to the Trojans 295 to 330. Notre Dame senior quarterback Tommy Rees threw for 166 yards and two touchdowns. The Trojans were led by senior running back Silas Redd who had 112 yards on 19 carries and USC’s lone touchdown of the night.
Colorado vs. Charleston Southern: Colorado W 43-10
The Buffaloes finally knocked off an undefeated team. It was an undefeated FCS team but hey, who’s counting? Colorado freshman running back Michael Adkins ran for 137 yards on 13 carries including a school freshman record four touchdowns. Buffaloes’ freshman quarterback Sefo Liufau made a solid impression in his first career start going 14 of 20 for 198 yards and a touchdown.
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