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Around The Conference Table: Week 1
This season we go around our writers for their takes on the other conference games that went on in gameweek.
Southern Utah @ Arizona State (Arizona State wins 24-21)
Former Twitter User Mpete - 91Duuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuun
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TD_24 - We had Cal vs UW 2019 lightning bowl rd 2 in this game. If you didn't stay up until 1AM to watch, you missed out. ASU will probably be a tire fire this year.
Bk97 - After this offseason's fiasco and this dud of an opener, ASU is making a strong claim as the worst team in the conference.
Avinash - ASU a must-win. They've gone youth movement and barely survived their FCS game.
Nick Kranz - Southern Utah was NOT a good FCS team last year, so struggling to this degree even with the weather weirdness factored in doesn't bode well for ASU. Early contender for worst team in the conference, glad Cal gets them this year.
Christopher_h - ASU established themselves as this year's cellar dweller, and they were fortunate to escape this year's Thunder Bowl with a win. Usually an FCS upset happens when a top FCS team catches a middling FBS program slacking. That was not the case here, as SUU is not even a very good FCS team. This year is going to be a struggle for ASU. Fortunately, the Cal-ASU game is at Cal, so they won't have desert voodoo magic on their side to Colorado us this year.
Northern Arizona @ Arizona (Arizona wins 38-3)
Former Twitter User Mpete91 - Go Lumberjacks
Piotr T Le - Good win by Zona, Jedd Fisch really resuscitated the program with really good offenses pieces.
TD_24 - Have to admit I forgot this game was happening. This isn't NAU vs U of A 2021
Avinash - Tough day for Kai Millner, but wishing the best for him.
Nick Kranz - NAU is a bad FCS team, but holding them to 3 points and less than 4 yards/play still probably counts as a step forward for the Arizona defense.
Christopher_h - Finally, an Arizona school that didn't struggle during an FCS matchup.
Florida @ Utah (Utah wins 24-11)
Former Twitter User Mpete91 - Hell yeah Utes.
Piotr T Le - Utah keeps Utah-ing and proving that they will turn the Big 12 into their own Ōoku to have fun at.
TD_24 - Eat. Sleep. Punish. Repeat.
Bk97 - Just your garden variety Whittingham win in which the Utes absolutely demoralized a hopeful opponent.
Avinash - Utah managed this comfortable win with a backup quarterback and their backup tight end (the two most crucial parts of their offense). This might be their best defensive group in sometime. Florida could not do anything with the football for most of the game.
Nick Kranz - While it is true that this is a game that Utah *should* win, it's still a solid step forward for Utah to overcome both injuries and their penchant for early season blunders.
Christopher_h - Not to take anything away from Utah, who is clearly a conference title contender, but Florida looked awful and out of sync. Utah manhandled them even with most of their star players resting due to injury.
Colorado @ TCU (Colorado wins 45-42)
Former Twitter User Mpete91 - Deion talked shit and backed it up while Sonny Dykes turned back into a pumpkin. Deion’s day is coming though.
Piotr T Le - I think this is more an indictment of Dykes than a vindication of Sanders. TCU looked like a vintage Dykes Cal team being poorly coached on defense and at times careless with the ball on offense.
TD_24 - We comin. Deion's got your attention whether you like or not.
Bk97 - I am not looking forward to the media amping up the Deion hype machine to unbearable levels, but that offense looked great in the second half.
Avinash - Coach Prime backed it up. Shedeur Sanders is a really good quarterback and made some clutch throws. Travis Hunter is the best player in the country. Dylan Edwards shined when he became the third option. This is a three man offensive wrecking crew. TCU might've taken significant steps back but this is a huge win for the Buffs and a Nebraska win will put them on the bowl path.
Nick Kranz - Dammit, Deion is probably for real. I do suspect that teams with competent secondary play and/or better pass rushes will be able to hold the Colorado offense down, but they appear to have the talent to win some shootouts.
Christopher_h - Deion Sanders Deion Sanders Deion Sanders. Deion Sanders? Deion Sanders Deion Sanders. Deion Sanders! Coach Prime. Deion Sanders. Deion Sanders. Deion Sanders Deion Sanders. Deion Sanders.
Oregon State @ San Jose State (Oregon State wins 42-17)
Former Twitter User Mpete91 - Hell yeah Beavs. My dark horse Conference Champ.
TD_24 - Jonathan Smith and DJ Uiagalelei may be a great match after all. Mix that with these fundamentals of the OSU team.......oh dear.
Avinash - The Oregon State offensive line put San Jose State in a blender for the first three quarters. Coach M is back at it again. DJU fits perfectly in this scheme and the Beavers are going to be absolute menaces in a few weeks.
Nick Kranz - A really impressive, thorough, workmanlike dismantling of an interior opponent. We're living in a world where Oregon State is doing a better job of maximizing a QB's talents than Clemson.
Christopher_h - Well, we now know that DJ Uiagalelei wasn't the problem at Clemson. OSU's offense was efficient and about what you'd expect from them.
Boise State @ Washington (Washington wins 56-19)
Former Twitter User Mpete91 - bleh
Piotr T Le - Very convincing win by UW. Boise is not a pushover at any time of the day and to take them down so convincingly sends a signal to the rest of the nation.
TD_24 - Probably the most complete win from the weekend has to go to the Huskies. I was skeptical of what was going on after the first quarter but they just bludgeoned the Broncos after. Consider me in fear.
Bk97 - Washington struggled with pass protection and accuracy while I was watching. Then I changed the channel and they outscored Boise State 56-13.
Avinash - Michael Penix remains the most underrated player in college football. Nothing but consistency when things get close and the Huskies ran away with this when it became a game.
Nick Kranz - The scariest performance of the week. Few teams have made Boise State look completely overmatched, but that's exactly what UW did. They might have a better offense than USC.
Christopher_h - Washington vs Utah in the Pac-12 Championship. Book it.
Washington State @ Colorado State (Washington State wins 50-24)
Former Twitter User Mpete91 - Best comment I saw was that Wazzu is 1-0 in conference play. Love you Cougs.
TD_24 - Wazzu was somehow only favored by 11 points against a tire fire of a CSU team. Cam Ward still letting people know he's not to be forgotten about when talking about Pac 12 QB's. Also seeing someone i went to high school with getting an interception puts a smile on my face.
Bk97 - Are the Cougs' struggles with the run going to continue again this season? Early signs point to "yes."
Avinash - Colorado State looks inept so this became a scrimmage by the 3rd quarter but Cam Ward definitely looks more confident in his second year in the Palouse. Next week's primetime game against Wisconsin will be a more stern test.
Nick Kranz - The combo of the Pac-12 being up and the MWC being down really makes it hard to parse levels. This game was not as close as the final score indicated, as Wazzu led 36-3 early in the 4th quarter.
Christopher_h - No one has even accused Colorado State of being a good team, but QB Cam Ward is a dynamic athlete and has really elevated his wide receivers' play.
Nevada @ USC (USC wins 66-14)
Former Twitter User Mpete91 - bleh
Piotr T Le - IMHO Caleb needs to sit out the season so he doesn't get injured since he's the slam dunk #1 overall pick.
TD_24 - Caleb Williams does Caleb Williams things.
Bk97 - It must feel nice to win a home opener against Nevada...
Avinash - USC is favored by 30 points against Stanford, so USC Is officially back. Excited to see a 21-21 4th quarter slugfest next week.
Nick Kranz - Weird to think that San Jose State was a better challenge than Nevada, crazy how quickly the Wolfpack have fallen. But even then, 12 yards/play is terrifying.
Christopher_h - USC's offense smashes another defenseless team, but of course, offense was never the problem.
Coastal Carolina @ UCLA (UCLA wins 27-13)
Former Twitter User Mpete91 - UCLA is lucky that someone decided to put a UC in the same market as USC. On the otherhand that game was a pretty good Iowa Cosplay.
Piotr T Le - Dante Moore is going to be a real threat this year before becoming Big 10 "free square" as he throws to #1 WR on UCLA. UCLA's defense looked undisciplined and porous against a CCU that looked confused at times.
TD_24 - Lets hope Chip Kelly doesn't figure out that Dante Moore needs to play.
Bk97 - The post-Charbonnet/DTR era began rather slowly. But it's hard to read too much into this because Kelly's teams always look mediocre against G5 5teams.
Avinash - UCLA has a quarterback problem. They have a very talented freshman who definitely knows how to throw deep and they have a seasoned Garbers who probably can't put it together for four quarters.
Nick Kranz - When I saw the final score I wanted to convince myself that UCLA disappointed, and maybe if I were a UCLA fan I'd be concerned about the interceptions, but the under-the-hood stats looked fine to me and I think UCLA will still probably be the best team in the Pac-12 that isn't currently ranked.
Christopher_h - Don't be fooled, this was not the same Coastal Carolina of years past. During a week of dominant Pac-12 performances, this was not one of them. UCLA fans should be nervous, as JMike unfortunately was the lone bright spot on offense. UCLA fans would probably credit freshman QB Dante Moore, but it was JMike finding himself alone in his own zip code over and over again for easy catches.
Rob Hwang - Really need all 3 QBs to play good then bad or bad then good all at varying times, so that Chip Kelly cant figure out who to play all season and we witness just a totally hilarious 3 QB system for the entire season.
Stanford @ Hawaii (Stanford wins 37-24)
Former Twitter User Mpete91 - After a decade of Shaw Ball it was weird to see Stanford doing things like not wearing you down by running straight into your face. Gonna have to keep an eye on the South Bay.
TD_24 - Troy Taylor is going to be good for them. Dammit.
Avinash - I hate to report it but Troy Taylor will be a good FBS coach. Stanford's play design already looks miles more competent than last year and his scheming around Ashton Daniels's strengths produced extra points. This team still has significant talent deficiencies, but they are not a walkover.
Nick Kranz - I think it says something about how low expectations are for Stanford that an unremarkable win over Hawaii generates positive press. Still, it's clear that Troy Taylor has stopped the rot on the farm, even if I don't think it will result in many Ws in year one.
Christopher_h - I said it last week, but I think Troy Taylor and Stanford are going to sneak up on some people. I was really impressed with the play of QB Ashton Daniels, who has made tremendous strides since last year. Fortunately, outside TE Benjamin Yurosek, they don't have a ton of great receivers anymore. Emmitt Smith's son, EJ Smith, is back from injury, and Stanford will need him to take some pressure off the passing game.
Any other thoughts?
TD_24 - Larry Scott needs to be arrested
Bk97 - It's going to be weird filling these out for fellow ACC teams next year...
Avinash - Auburn slammed UMass, and that offensive line looks quite big. Luckily, their run defense appears to be their weakness as well. That run game vs. our ran game could shape up for a barnburner on Saturday.
Nick Kranz - I'm pretty sure the Pac-12 will not remain undefeated against out-of-conference competition next week . . . but I'd bet that there are two or fewer losses in total, which would be pretty excellent considering the step up in competition next week.
Christopher_h - I feel validated in predicting that Cal is going to be a lot better this year but unfortunately so is everyone else. That 13-0 undefeated Pac-12 streak will come to an end next week, but it's sad that this is the strongest PAC we've seen top to bottom and it's all coming to an end. Curse USC, Fox, and ESPN forever.