Dirty dozen: The seven dwarfs edition

After a fairytale weekend for the Pac-12, our Dirty Dozen is assigning roles as we whip around the West Coast.



The blue team had an unbelievable, too good to be true start, but the red team had institutional advantages. It was close throughout, but the plucky blue team did just enough to hang on at, yup, Romney Stadium. That could be Utah State over Utah in overtime on Friday, or a dream/nightmare (your choice) scenario come this November, your choice. Either way, the Aggies just pulled an upset of "Dewey beats Truman" magnitude.


Weekends like this are fodder for the old geezers who say the league should have stuck at ten teams. Of course, these are probably the same old geezers who are opposed to legalizing marijuana, and where would CU-Boulder, a nationally-renown party school, be then? Of course, they're going to need some powerful stuff to get over the indignity of a last-second loss to Sacramento State. (Cliff Harris would lend you some, but he smoked it all.) Then again, maybe they were lighting up pregame. It probably wouldn't be the first time, and it's as plausible an explanation for a shocking upset as any.



Our first two teams' performances were dopey. Now we're stepping up a dwarf to the first of three teams who appeared to sleepwalk through their contest against an overmatched opponent. First with the crusties in his eyes is Oski, who did put up 50 against Southern Utah. The problem, however, is that it was 20-17 Bears entering the fourth quarter. But hey, who is this Stanford alum to judge beating a lesser opponent 20-17, only to then put up 50 the next time out. Wait a minute…


The specter of tornados delayed the game 90 minutes at halftime, USC's OL may be banged up, the Trojans had to play in the opposite corner of the country, and they didn't put away Syracuse until late enough that no one got any rest. All that has to be worth something as the Trojans prepare to visit Palo Alto this week, right? In Bootleg tradition, here's my prediction: Barkley finishes 0-for-4, his Heisman candidacy stalls before it ever really got started and, in iconic fashion yet again, we smoke these guys.

Washington State

Don't know of any major bodies of water near Pullman, but the locals were going to make Mike Leach take a long walk off a short plank had Eastern Washington pulled it off. (As a pirate, of course, Leach would have been a natural.) True to form, Washington State nearly Couged it by scoring no points the entire second half, but the endangered cats did just enough to hang on for a 24-20 win while opening the new Martin Stadium. Next up is a Friday night visit to Las Vegas – for a UNLV game that could go a long way toward determining whether the Cougs can snap their bowlless streak.



42-25 over Fresno State in a game that was 35-6 at halftime. The visit from Arizona in two weeks' time looks more interesting than it did a few days ago, but still, the Duckmobile can all but put itself on cruise control until the Nov. 3 trip to USC. Marcus Mariota's 37-of-49 on the season, so now it's on the (third-string) defense to tighten after allowing 59 in the first two games, albeit mainly in garbage time.


The Cardinal get to be the best dwarf, at least for this week, after coming out in their Batman uniforms and hanging half a century on Duke. "Our team didn't show up," Duke wide receiver Jamison Crowder told the AP. "Stanford did show up." Crowder, unless you could have cloned yourself three times over and shown up 14 vs. 11, not sure "showing up" would have been enough. Until then, enjoy the cosmic retribution for everything your basketball program has put the rest of the country through.

p.s.: I hear an opponent of some import is on deck.

Arizona State

The aptly-named Michael Eubank shows up and the Devils are 2-0 after pasting Illinois by 31 in ESPN prime time. Last year, no Michael Eubank, and ASU loses its last five to finish 5-7. I'm not saying, but I'm just saying. Is there anything this Michael Eubank can't do?

Arizona State at Missouri this upcoming week looked like an absolute laugher, but now, guess we'll see just how expansive the powers of ME97 ME18 are. Better beat Missouri now, before the general excellence of the SEC rubs off on them. Speaking off…



LSU kindly spotted the Huskies three… before scoring the game's final 41 in a contest that, really, could have gone either way. In a great use of taxpayer money, Washington brought a live tiger to practice in preparation for the LSU Tigers.

The story raises more questions than it answers. How do I order a tiger? Does he do bar mitzvahs? Judging by Saturday night's carnage, did Washington elect not to order a cage alongside the tiger? With the Portland State Vikings on tap this week, will the brain trust in Seattle (and I use that phrase loosely) elect to import some Nordic warriors?


I realize I'm switching stories here, and that the Biblical David was a dwarf only in comparison to Golaith, but raise your hand if you saw UCLA, Oregon State and Arizona winning those games. In a situation as improbable as this, I'm claiming creative license. Don't think anyone in the Pac-12 South is slowing down USC's offense, but looks like there are two offenses that can consider keeping pace. And seeing as Oregon State usually finishes stronger than they start, maybe the North isn't a two-team race after all? That's all I have on those three teams, as you won immunity from our wisecracks with your performances this week. But in a wacky league that can beat Nebraska hours after falling to Sacramento State, who knows what next week will bring. Until then…

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