CF.C Pac-12 Power Rankings: Week Eight

IT JUST DEPENDS on what team shows up on any given week - that's how even things are in the Pac-12 conference. Indeed, things are so closely matched that Stanford has three losses yet not only do they have a shot, they still control their own destiny in the race for the Pac-12 title.

1. Oregon (1)
Duck defensive coordinator Don Pellum is well thought of in coaching circles but he's been feeling the heat this year from NIKE. All appears to have been forgiven though after Oregon posted a 45-20 dominating win over the Huskies. "I have withdrawn my lawsuit alleging coach Don Pellum has been wrongfully employed the last 22 years," Phil Knight said in a terse statement.

2. Arizona (2)
During Arizona's bye week, The Sporting News' Matt Hayes speculated Rich Rodriguez might jump to Florida, with Hayes saying Will Muschamp could be fired as soon as Sunday. Not to be outdone, Yahoo's Pat Forde floated Rodriguez's name a few days later, saying don't be surprised if Rich Rod bolts for Florida. Neither cited any sources of any kind, just a desire for page views. Rodriguez' contract runs through May of 2019, with a $1 million dollar buyout before Jan. 15, 2015, and a $500,000 buyout starting Jan. 16.

3. Arizona State (4)
ASU's defense, pedestrian all season, looked like world-beaters in the win over Stanford. "I have no idea how it happened either but I take full credit for it," said Todd Graham, who then left for his night job as most terrifying AT&T operator in the history of the world .

4. Southern Cal (5)
'SC blasted Colorado 56-28 but there was still plenty of drama. The Los Angeles Times reports former RB LenDale White was ejected after the game. White says AD Pat Haden kicked him out. Haden denies it. White tweeted Haden was a coward. White has also said Steve Sarkisian and DC Justin Wilcox should be fired. Sarkisian said he doesn't know anything about it, but that he would check with God on how it all fits into His plan regarding Sarkisian and the 2014 Trojans.

5. Utah (9)
The Ute faithful are again talking Pac-12 title and national playoff after Utah moved to 5-1 following a double-overtime win over Oregon State. Utah's offense resembles a Peruvian three-toed sloth but Ute fans predict a relatively easy 6-0 finish over the remaining teams on the schedule: USC, ASU, Oregon, Stanford, Arizona and Colorado, with the Buffaloes the team that worries Ute fans the most.

6. UCLA (7)
The Bruins beat Cal 36-34. With over a minute to go, Cal's play call was four vertical routes from the 36-yard line, resulting in a disputed interception the replay booth somehow confirmed. After the game, Jim Mora convinced the LA Times to write a feel-good story about Mora and d-coordinator Jeff Ulbrich, with whom he had a major sideline dustup the previous week. "The positive story will make it easier for me to let him go at the end of the season," Mora cheerfully explained.

7. Stanford (3)
Stanford, after ASU punished the Cardinal, has now lost three regular season games for the first time since 2009. But they still control their own destiny, with two losses to Pac-12 South teams and MSU. David Shaw belittled fans, alumni and Mensa members who think the sky is falling on Stanford (4-3), saying they don't have his mental powers. He then excused himself and was off to show the non-believers who's the boss by turning Thursday's partial solar eclipse into a full lunar eclipse.

8. Washington (6)
After the Huskies fell to the Ducks for the 11th consecutive time on Saturday, U-Dub quietly hired Rick Neuheisel as their new Compliance Director.

9. Cal (4)
Sonny Dykes' plan at the end of the game against UCLA was to score a quick touchdown, eschewing a game-winning field goal attempt as time expired, and thus allowing UCLA plenty of time to stage a comeback. The strategy/play can be found in Paragraph Three of the half-page pamphlet; The Air Raid Clock Management Style Guide.

10. Washington State (10) During the bye week, Mike Leach cut short interview sessions where he was asked about injuries, losing close games, being 2-5, special teams, offense, defense, and football. "What am I, a circus performer?" said Leach.

11. Oregon State (11)
The Beavs were battered in the loss to Utah, losing long term a starting o-lineman and receiver. Some Beav alums are getting restless with OSU's inability to cross over into elite status, with OSU averaging 7.2 wins per year over the last 10 seasons, and winning 10 games once during that span. Riley, however, is going nowhere unless he chooses to leave. His contract runs through 2021 and rolls over another year every time OSU goes to a bowl.

12. Colorado (12)
USC was clearly the better team Saturday against Colorado but it would have been nice had the Pac-12 refs not ignored blatant, multiple out-in-space holding infractions by USC as the Trojans built a 21-0 first quarter lead. But Mike MacIntyre was on his best behavior, having already been fined by the Pac-12 this year for chasing after the refs. MacIntyre said he was warned a second offense would result in having to attend Larry Scott's 3-hour seminar: Don't Question Me Or My Replay Booth.


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