Pre-Pre-Season Football Rankings Are Out

With everyone all settled down from Spring practices, around now is when every media member will have filed their post-spring pre-season football rankings.  The Salt Lake Tribune has done a great job of compiling divisional rankings for both the Pac-12 North and South as we head towards the summer.

For the most part, Stanford is ranked second in the North behind Oregon, which isn't too terribly surprising.  If both Stanford and Oregon have the same record going into their November matchup, you may as well flip a coin to determine who comes out on top at the end of November.  Some brave souls even picked Stanford over Oregon.

There are a few, let's just say, head scratchers, though.  First up, Bud Withers of the Seattle Times.

South
1. ASU
2. Arizona
3. Utah
4. USC
5. UCLA
6. Colorado

Nothing too unusual there.  If anything, he put USC in fourth, which is somewhat surprising, but who knows how USC will come out now that they effectively have nothing to play for next season.

North
1. Oregon
2. Washington
3. Stanford
4. Oregon State
5. Washington State
6. California

Washington ahead of Stanford?  Wazzu ahead of Cal?  OK, I'm willing to chalk up the 2nd place ranking for UW as mere homerism.  Not going to complain bitterly about it, considering he writes for a Seattle newspaper.  But Cal in dead last?  Is he expecting great things from the Cougars?  Does he have a thing against teams from California?  What's going on there, Mr. Withers?

Next up, the esteemed Stewart Mandel of Sports Illustrated.

South
1. ASU
2. Arizona
3. USC
4. Utah
5. UCLA
6. Colorado

No surprises.  Let's look at the North.

North
1. Oregon
2. California
3. Stanford
4. Washington
5. Oregon State
6. Washington State

Did I miss something?  I can't blame this ranking on homerism.  He writes for a national audience.  Sure, Cal got a good recruiting class, but ranking them second in the North?  Ahead of Stanford and two other teams who beat them last year and another team who lost to them by a TD with five minutes left to go in the fourth quarter?  Zach Maynard must have been real amazing in those closed practices (yes, that's sarcasm).  Tis a mad, mad, mad world, Mr. Mandel.
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