BootPowerRatings™ - 9/25

Stanford moves up from six to five, Arizona's up a slot and Arizona State slides down three. At least two things are constant as the Pac-10 continues to take its lumps: USC is alone at the top, and the Washington schools continue to occupy the caboose.

1. USC  99 (Last: 1)

The prophylactics' schedule the last month parallels the guy who keeps a weekend roadster in the garage, only breaking it out for sunny days and hot dates.  Slaughter Virginia, take a week off.  Dominate the annual Big Ten Pretender, take another week off;  life is good in Compton.  Their Thursday night affair with the River Rats begins a ten-game stretch in which they will no doubt be double-digit favorites as they try to stay perfect in 2008.

2. Arizona 85 (Last: 3)

This week's benefactor in the slip n' slide that has become the Pac-9 is Arizona, as their impressive performance at The Rose Bowl was enough to rise to second.  Their run defense is still a WIP, as they allowed punchless El Lay to ground out 100 yards for the first time this year, but getting a "C" game from Willie T and still winning by 21 on the road has to feel good.

3. Oregon 78 (Last: 2)

Already seven deep on their QB depth chart with eight games remaining, "Magnum P.I." Bellotti has to be searching for an early-admittance exemption for his 2009 recruits.  Even though last Saturday's starter, Masoli, went out with a concussion, the number of knee-related injuries sustained by Duck signal callers makes one wonder if part of the old Maples Pavilion floor wasn't buried under the Autzen turf.  If there ever was a more forgiving place for a true freshman to make his first conference start, it would be at UO's next stop in Pullman.

4. kal 75 (Last: 5)

It isn't quite known if the Bears went straight into hibernation after they returned from College Park and frankly, no one gives a damn.  Hosting Fort Collins U. this weekend, kal will try and do what no conference team has done against a Rocky Mountain school so far; win.

*In an effort to get the blood flowing prior to The Big Game, I will provide, as an addendum, an anti-kal slur every week.  If you have a one-liner worthy of submission, feel free to send it to my inbox.  Here is an example of what I'm looking for:

"Screw the weenies and their flea-bitten, urine-soaked, last-second reject Halloween costume mascot!"

5. Stanford 74 (Last: 6)

The knee not taken 'round the world (or at least the South Bay) has dominated discussion amongst Cardinalmaniacs and SpartanHeads alike since the final gun sounded at Foster Field late Saturday night.  Lost amongst all the hoopla was that Stanford moved back to even for the season and is in relatively good health compared to their conference brethren.  Against all odds, The Sheriff still stalks the sidelines at Montlake, setting the stage for the last remaining ill-will to manifest itself in the form of a tail-whoopin' this weekend.

6. Oregon State 73 (Last: 7)

After having just picked up their first non-loss of the year, the last thing Da' Beavs needed was a bye.   Besides, two weeks isn't enough time to scheme your way to a win against the indomitable wooden horse, who will be just as eager to "hit someone else" after intrasquad scrimmages.  On the other hand, Pete's only road conference losses the last four seasons have both happened in the state of Oregon.  Adjust your BootPool picks accordingly.

7. Arizona State 72 (Last: 4)

Erickson's Evil have somehow gone from potential $C threat to marginal bowl team in just two weeks.  The loss to Ugga wasn't as bad as the UNLV debacle, but the fact that they were manhandled at home doesn't bode well going forward.  With go-to tailback Keegan Herring still out, ASU has abandoned any token attempts at rushing the ball and have become as one-dimensional as a quantum wire.  Couple this flaw with the propensity for allowing sacks and Elway Jr. might take comfort from his vantage point behind the clipboard.

8. UCLA  62 (Last: 8)  

It's now been two whole games since the baby blues have scored an offensive touchdown, and the upcoming schedule doesn't offer up any more middling SEC teams with which to pad the stats.  This futility has far-reaching affects on the entire team, the least of which is the punishment taken by senior punter Aaron Perez, whose leg has already endured a career's worth of action in just three weeks.  No time to pout as the rabid Bulldogs of Fresno State come rolling into Westwood, with their Cinderella baseball story in tow.

9. Washington 37 (Last: 9)

To outsiders, it would appear that UW is just a bad series of plays away from a complete meltdown, but you would never know it listening to the musings of cornerback Mesphin Forrester, the most optimistic person on the planet.  "So we still have a shot at our goal, to be number one in the Pac-10. We are still reaching for it," Forrester pleads.  Maybe 'Rone can convince him and his colleagues that the low-hanging fruit tastes just as good as the stuff on top.  Or, maybe this is the Washington team that is destined for 0-12.

10. Washington State 32 (Last: 10)

It's been a season of firsts for new head man Paul "Lone" Wulff, but the most bizarre first can be seen in the passing stats column in last week's win.  I've heard of three 100-yard rushers in one game, but when was the last time a team ended a game with three 100-yard passers?  It wasn't all in good fun though, as gritty senior Gary Rogers, who was already in a relief appearance for injured starter Kevin Lopina, fractured his spine and has played in his last football game.  At least this means Wazzu won't make history by going 0-12, and perhaps they were secretly auditioning for acceptance into the Big Sky Conference.

Are you fully subscribed to The Bootleg ? If not, then you are missing out on all the top Cardinal coverage we provide daily on our website. Sign up today for the biggest and best in Stanford sports coverage with (sign-up)!

The Bootleg Top Stories