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Pac-12 power rankings, Week 2: Arizona jumps after USC loss to Washington State

The Arizona football team moved up the power rankings but it was more a factor of the Trojans doing poorly.

Stephen Dunn

Last week's power rankings painted a fair picture of the conference, I think. This week saw a lot of movement but not much sense to make of it, and the oddities were mostly thanks to the first Pac-12 intra-conference game of the 2013 season. Washington State dropped USC at The Coliseum, and all of a sudden things are burning in Troy. I might as well burn this power rankings set for Week 3, because I have no confidence it'll look like this in two weeks.

By the way, ESPN's power rankings don't look like mine, which I think is just fine.

The middle of the Pac-12 is confusing, and there legitimately might be more 1-12 depth than any time in recent memory. The only easy picks are Oregon (1), Stanford (2) and Colorado (12), and even the Buffs aren't all that bad so far in 2013.

1. Oregon

Last week: Oregon 59, Virginia 10

Trending (last week): -- (1)

Like the Arizona Wildcats have been doing to really bad teams, Oregon is doing to FBS opponents. No, Virginia isn't all that and a bad of potato chips. But when the Ducks score four times on plays greater than 30 yards, that whole "recruiting for speed" thing sure seems like a good idea.

2. Stanford

Last week: Stanford 34, San Jose State 13

Trending (last week): -- (2)

Will Kevin Hogan hit a sophomore slump? So far it seems like he's playing smart Stanford football. Meanwhile, the run game continues its success without Stepfan Taylor in the fold. The Cardinal put up 197 rush yards against the Aztecs.


Last week: --

Trending (last week): -- (3)

A steady week and a steady ranking for the Bruins.

4. Washington

Last week: --

Trending (last week): -- (4)

The Huskies were off and get back at it against Illinois this week.

5. ASU

Last week: Arizona State 55, Sacramento State 0

Trending (last week): ^ (6)

The Sun Devils showed their explosiveness against Sacramento State, though it came about similarly to Arizona romping on UNLV. They're good, but we'll find out how good against Wisconsin this week. That speed will be on full display, in all likelihood.

6. Arizona

Last week: Arizona 58, UNLV 13

Trending (last week): ^ (7)

It's simple: Could Arizona beat USC? We think so. So like ASU, the Wildcats hop USC. Still, the Wildcats could be sniffing No. 10 if the quarterback situation turns into a worst-case scenario.

7. USC

Last week: Washington State 10, USC 7

Trending (last week): Down (5)

The Trojans are in trouble. But it's hard to forget they're still a very, very talented team regardless of the depth that's been killed by recruiting restrictions. If they met WSU tomorrow, my money would be on the Trojans. Still, Lane Kiffin is showing everyone how to mess up a good situation.

8. Oregon State

Last week: Oregon State 33, Hawaii 14

Trending (last week): Up, but not in the numbers (8)

There wasn't any room to bump Oregon State up the board, though with another strong showing next week at Utah, they'll surpass USC and potentially Arizona if the Wildcats aren't careful. I think I'm a Mike Riley apologist.

9. Washington State

Last week: Washington State 10, USC 7

Trending (last week): ^^^ (10)

I don't know whether the Cougars should be ranked higher for beating USC, and I'm not sure they could upset the Trojans more than 3 times out of 10. They move up just a tad after a big win. There is still skepticism but WSU, despite the rankings gap, is right with the Wildcats in a convoluted conference.

10. Utah

Last week: Utah 70, Weber State 7

Trending: ^ (11)

Utah looked good against a bad team. Cal looked bad against a bad team. That is all.

11. Cal

Last week: Cal 37, Portland 30

Trending (last week): Blargh (9)

The depth of the Pac-12 might be legitimate. Cal beat Portland State but looked nothing like it did in Week 1 against Northwestern. I'm not for dropping teams in rankings if they won, but somebody had to take a hit for WSU's big win. And if we're talking about the rebuilding process once again, Utah is a year ahead of the Golden Bears.

12. Colorado

Last week: Colorado 38, Central Arkansas 24

Trending (last week): -- (12)

Being ranked 12th of 12 teams on this blog simply means it could be worse for the Buffaloes. Colorado is 2-0!