Staff Predictions: The Pac-10

The college football season is upon us. Predictions, rankings, and analysis abound in cyberspace, print, and the tips of tongues around the country. The staff at decided to take a shot at prophesying the future of Pac-10 football and Beaver football this past week. Here are the results:

Pac-10 Questions

1. Who is going to be the Pac-10's Offensive Player of the Year?

  • Believer Tim - Steven Jackson, OSU, no question.
  • Big Daddy Orange - Steven Jackson, OSU, it won't even be close.
  • Candace Zepp - Steven Jackson, OSU
  • Dan Norz - Steven Jackson, OSU
  • Jake Schubert - Tie between Andrew Walter, ASU and Steven Jackson, OSU
  • Orange Attack - Steven Jackson. OSU
  • Robert Nesta - Steven Jackson, OSU. Should repeat as league rushing champ.
  • Tony Pulicella - Steven Jackson, OSU

Steven Jackson grabbed all the votes for the Pac-10 Offensive Player of the Year.

Summary: Steven Jackson was the unanimous selection as the Pac-10's offensive player of the year although he will receive competition from UW's WR Reggie Williams, UW QB Cody Pickett, USC's Mike Williams, and ASU QB Andrew Walter.


2. Who is going to be the Pac-10's Defensive Player of the Year?

  • Believer Tim - I'm going with DE Haloti Ngata, UO. It took two guys to block him
    last year, this year he'll be better.
  • Big Daddy Orange - LB Richard Seigler, OSU. Richard is also a front-runner for the Butkis award and Pac-10 top talker of the year.
  • Candace Zepp - LB Kevin Mitchell, UO / LB Richard Seigler, OSU
  • Dan Norz
  • Jake Schubert - LB Richard Seigler, OSU
  • Orange Attack - LB Richard Seigler, OSU. I know this may sound like homerism but look at the All-conference 1st teamers last year. The underclassmen were Seig, Matt
    Grootegoed, Terrell Suggs, Rien Long, and Derrick Johnson. Suggs and Long
    have gone to the NFL, and Seig is the best of the three returning players.
  • Robert Nesta - DL Kenechi Udeze, USC
  • Tony Pulicella - DE Issac Brown, WSU

Summary: Four different players were listed with OSU LB Richard Seigler receiving the most credit. Homers, or is Seigler just that good?


3. Who is the best receiver in the Pac-10?

  • Believer Tim - It's a toss-up between the two Williams (USC and UW) and James Newson, OSU, but I'm biased.
  • Big Daddy Orange - James Newson, OSU with my heart, Reggie Williams, UW with my head, and Mike Williams, USC with my spleen.
  • Candace Zepp - Reggie Williams, UW and Mike Williams, USC
  • Dan Norz - Mike Williams, USC
  • Jake Schubert - Mike Williams, USC
  • Orange Attack - Reggie Williams, UW. No question.
  • Robert Nesta - Reggie Williams - UW, One of, if not the best in the country.
    Mike Williams - USC, This guy's only a sophomore?! James Newson - OSU, Doesn't get the juice he deserves because of the two above him, but a star nonetheless. Sammie Parker - UO, Small, but fast and with great hands. Will get more looks this year with TE Wrighster and WR Howry off to the NFL.
  • Tony Pulicella - TIE - James Newson, OSU and Reggie Williams, UW

Summary: Perhaps the hardest category to select. Most people had a difficult time, ranking USC's Mike Williams, UW's Reggie Williams, and OSU's James Newson 1,2, and 3 in no particular order.

Three receivers grabbed all the votes for the best in the Pac-10.

4. Who is the best running back in the Pac-10?

  • Believer Tim - The man-child. Without a doubt. He may be the best in the nation.
  • Big Daddy Orange - Steven Jackson, OSU. Speed, size, power, a devastating stiff-arm, great hair, he's got it all.
  • Candace Zepp - Steven Jackson, OSU
  • Dan Norz - Steven Jackson, OSU
  • Jake Schubert - Steven Jackson, OSU
  • Orange Attack - Steven Jackson, OSU. And it's not even close.
  • Robert Nesta - Steven Jackson, OSU
  • Tony Pulicella - Steven Jackson, OSU

Summary: Another unanimous selection for the preseason All-American RB Steven Jackson. Who could argue?


5. Who is the best quarterback in the Pac-10?

  • Believer Tim - Probably Cody Pickett, UW, though I'd love to see DA (OSU) give him a run for his money.
  • Big Daddy Orange - Cody Pickett, UW or Andrew Walter, ASU. Walter is a better passer but I feel like Pickett is going to have one of those Pac-10 senior quarterback seasons, much like Carson Palmer had last year.
  • Candace Zepp - Andrew Walter, ASU
  • Dan Norz - Andrew Walter, ASU
  • Jake Schubert - Andrew Walter, ASU
  • Orange Attack - I'm going to go with Cody Pickett, UW. A lot of guys will say Walter, but Pickett is the one who set the Pac 10 records last year.
  • Robert Nesta - Andrew Walter, ASU. Although he won't have numbers like last year due to the loss of Shaun McDonald. Cody Pickett - UW, Will reproduce numbers from last year with favorite target Reggie Williams still running routes for UW. The state of the running game will have little affect on this as Pickett attempted a league leading 612 passes with an abysmal running attack in 2002.
  • Tony Pulicella - Cody Pickett, UW

Summary: Split between ASU's Andrew Walter and UW's Cody Pickett although all would like to see OSU's Derek Anderson rise to their level of play.


Richard Seigler grabbed all the spots for the top backer.

6. Who is the best linebacker in the Pac-10?

  • Believer Tim - Richard Seigler, OSU, same as last year (Barnett was awesome but Richard anchored that corps).
  • Big Daddy Orange - Richard Seigler, OSU. Strong, fast, knows the game, and hits like a truck.
  • Candace Zepp - Richard Seigler, OSU
  • Dan Norz - Richard Seigler, OSU
  • Jake Schubert - Richard Seigler, OSU
  • Orange Attack - Richard Seigler, OSU
  • Robert Nesta - Richard Seigler, OSU
  • Tony Pulicella - Richard Seigler, OSU

Summary: Unanimous for OSU's Richard Seigler, one of the best in the country.

7. Who is the best cornerback in the Pac-10?

  • Believer Tim - Too tough to call. There are several. None of them play for the Ducks though.
  • Big Daddy Orange - It's not Dennis Weathersby, for the first time in quite a while, and because it's not Dennis, I refuse to answer this question.
  • Candace Zepp - Jason David, WSU
  • Dan Norz - Derrick Johnson, UW
  • Jake Schubert- Jason David, WSU
  • Orange Attack - Derrick Johnson, UW
  • Robert Nesta - Matt Ware - UCLA, At 6'3" he matches up better than any other corner in the Pac-10 with the tall receivers throughout the conference.
  • Tony Pulicella - R.J. Oliver, ASU

Summary: Very difficult category with a slew of names. This one is up in the air.


8. Who is the best defensive lineman in the Pac-10?

  • Believer Tim - Shaun Cody, USC. Without a doubt.
  • Big Daddy Orange - Shaun Cody, USC if he stays healthy this year. He was dominating before last year's injury. I hate to say it but there isn't much difference between Shaun and Haloti Ngata, UO. They are both great players.
  • Candace Zepp - Kenechi Udeze, USC
  • Dan Norz - Haloti Ngata, UO
  • Jake Schubert - Bill Swancutt, OSU
  • Orange Attack - Shaun Cody, USC
  • Robert Nesta - Haloti Ngata, UO
  • Tony Pulicella - Issac Brown, WSU

Summary: Another question with a variety of responses. The media has USC's Shaun Cody as the big man on campus.

Shaun Cody will be wreaking havoc again for the Men of Troy, who according to most of the staff, is the most overrated Pac-10 team.

9. What Pac-10 team is overrated?

  • Believer Tim - Probably ASU. They lost their best defensive player from a bad defense. They need to show they can stop teams and not rely on outscoring them.
  • Big Daddy Orange - Any team from Los Angeles.
  • Candace Zepp - USC
  • Dan Norz - Arizona, they are going to be worse than most people expect.
  • Jake Schubert - USC-no experience at QB and a lot of people have them as the favorite going into the season.
  • Orange Attack - Arizona State
  • Robert Nesta - USC - Any team still trying figure out who it's starting QB is going
    to be in August, especially when the candidates have no real game experience and
    are trying to replace the Heisman Trophy winner, is not going to win the
    Pac-10 regardless of how good the defense is.

    UW - Too many off season issues and no significant running game. The secondary is overrated, with 5 of last seasons picks coming in one game and at the expense of an inexperienced OSU QB. Throw out that game statistically, and don't expect it to be too much better overall than last season. Not bad, but overrated.

  • Tony Pulicella - USC

Summary: USC and ASU seem to be the consensus, only time will tell.


10. What Pac-10 team is underrated?

  • Believer Tim - Oregon State, of course.
  • Big Daddy Orange - Oregon, Mike B. will NOT let his team have two bad seasons in a row.
  • Candace Zepp - Stanford/Washington State
  • Dan Norz - Oregon
  • Jake Schubert - Arizona State, I think the only conference game they lose is to Oregon State.
  • Orange Attack - Oregon State
  • Robert Nesta - UO - Two quality QB's are vying for the starting job, but that doesn't
    mean there's a problem at QB. Too many times the secondary broke down last year
    contributing greatly to losses. A full year of experience, a couple of new faces, and one of the best defensive coordinators (Aliotti) in the country are the reasons this won't happen again.
  • Tony Pulicella - California

Summary: A selection of teams with Oregon getting the nod with three votes.


11. What Pac-10 team will surprise the league this year?

  • Believer Tim - Possibly UCLA. No one is talking about them and they always have good talent, they just need someone to harness it.
  • Big Daddy Orange - Oregon will surprise the league this year when they choose midseason to unveil another dumb mascot, even dumber than last year, even dumber than the tree.
  • Candace Zepp - Oregon State
  • Dan Norz - Oregon
  • Jake Schubert - USC. Some people expect them to be really good, I think they will be good but not great.
  • Orange Attack -Stanford may actually win a game or two.
  • Robert Nesta - Stanford - A tough, experienced defense will catch some teams by
    surprise. If only the young offense that's trying to replace 8 starters can get the
    ball into the end zone.
  • Tony Pulicella - Stanford

Summary: Stanford jumped to the front of several writers ballots. Could the Cardinal surprise the league as they did in 1999?


Will OSU win their second league title in the new millennium?

12. Who is the Pac-10 champ going to be?

  • Believer Tim - My heart says OSU, my head says USC. Carroll and Chow will come into the season with a plan to minimize rookie mistakes at the QB position and their D will keep them in all of the games.
  • Big Daddy Orange - I guarantee Oregon State will win the Pac-10 championship if they go undefeated.
  • Candace Zepp - Arizona State
  • Dan Norz - USC
  • Jake Schubert - TIE-OSU-ASU (both 7-1 in conference, ASU loses to OSU, OSU loses to USC, yeah I know I said they won't great, but good is a yes I would say, and
    playing them late in the season like we do is bad for Oregon State, good for USC, look for Oregon State to possibly be undefeated going into that game.)
  • Orange Attack - Oregon State
  • Robert Nesta - OSU - Ok, start your Beaver Homer rants, but a soft non-conf schedule combined with a favorable home schedule puts the Beavers into the best position possible since their 11-1 run 3 years ago. Steven Jackson will continue to put pressure on defenses with an all-around game out of the backfield, allowing Derek Anderson to throw when he wants. The offense returns all but 2 players, and the solid and improved line should give Anderson the time he needs to make those throws. The defense needs to replace multiple players, but there is good mix of game experience in
    those stepping in and a whole lot of speed. Look for the Beavers in the Rose Bowl this year.
  • Tony Pulicella - ASU

Summary: A tough call for most people. Like Believer Tim said, my heart says OSU, but head says...

Oregon State staff predictions to be posted on Tuesday.

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