Week 2 made things a little clearer at the top and bottom of the conference, but parity rules through most of the conference.
1. USC (2-0, 1-1): Beat Stanford, 42-24. Overreacting to Week 1 performances is a tradition in college football. It’s unavoidable. A lot of people were quick to sour on USC and Sam Darnold, but they came back this week and played to the lofty expectations they started the year with.
2. Washington (2-0): Beat Montana, 63-7. This never figured to be much of a game, and there should be more of the same next week against Fresno State.
3. Stanford (1-1): Lost to USC, 24-42. This is where things start to get interesting. Stanford lost to a better team, but did any of the teams ranked below the Cardinal make a strong enough case to be ranked above? Debatable. We’ll leave them here for at least another week.
4. Washington State (2-0): Beat Boise State, 47-44 3OT. In the 3-8 range, there’s not much separation. Wazzu gets to keep its spot at No. 4 because it beat a good Boise State team, but a better performance was expected.
5. Colorado (2-0): Beat Texas State, 37-3. On one hand, it feels like the offense has another gear to find. On the other, the Buffs haven’t allowed a touchdown in two games.
6. Oregon (2-0): Beat Nebraska, 42-35. The Ducks looked reborn as they jumped out to a 42-14 halftime lead, but the fact that they were only able to hang on for a 7-point win was a little deflating. Still, Oregon is clearly headed in the right direction under Willie Taggart.
7. UCLA (2-0): Beat Hawaii, 56-23. Through two weeks, Josh Rosen has lived up to the hype. To follow up last week’s historic comeback, Rosen was 22 of 25 for 329 yards with five touchdowns and no picks.
8. Utah (2-0): Beat BYU, 19-13. The Utes are looking at a 4-0 start with San Jose State and Arizona upcoming, and can really make some noise with Stanford and USC after that.
9. Cal (2-0): Beat Weber State, 33-20. They trailed 20-17 headed into the fourth quarter and allowed 431 passing yards, so, yeah, not exactly a way to inspire much confidence. Counterpoint: Cal is 2-0, so who cares?
10. Arizona (1-1): Lost to Houston, 19-16. After rushing for more than 1,000 yards over their last two games, the Wildcats managed just 152 on the ground against Houston.
11. Arizona State (1-1): Lost to San Diego State, 30-20: The crazy part of this loss was that it had nothing to do with Arizona State’s pass defense. The Sun Devils allowed just 73 yards passing. It was their inability to run the ball (31 carries, 44 yards) that was costly.
12. Oregon State (1-2): Lost to Minnesota, 48-14. This is shaping up to be a really long season for the Beavers.