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The PAC Twelver - Week 8

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A twelve-pack of observations on The Conference of Champions.

Stanford v Arizona State Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images

First: #25 Washington State hosted ESPN GameDay for the first time ever in Pullman, basically declared a ‘state of emergency’ when 100,000 crazy football fans showed up, and then proceeded to handily upset #12 Oregon 34-20 in front of said mob Saturday night. Cougars senior quarterback “The Constant” Gardner Minshew (39 for 51 passing / 323 yards / 4 TD’s / 2 INT’s / 87.8 QBR) harvested four touchdowns on the evening, in a contest that I thought Oregon would win by two scores. Shows what I know.

Second: The now #14 WSU Cougars (6-1 / 3-1 PAC 12) have officially become the wildcard to this year’s PAC-12 party, while the #19 Ducks (5-2 / 2-2 PAC 12) look as if they were partied out from their big win versus then #7 Washington the previous week.

Third: The currently #15 Huskies (6-2 / 4-1 PAC 12) stampeded the Buffaloes (5-2 / 2-2 PAC 12) 27-13 in Seattle this past weekend, and Colorado has now dropped two straight after starting the ’18 campaign 5-0. As per usual in a Washington game, Huskies senior linebacker and all around bad hombre Ben Burr-Kirven (16 tackles / 2 PD / 1 INT / 1 QBH) was the best football player on the field. #BewareOfDawg #BBK

Fourth: #15 Washington at #14 Washington State, in the season finale, is setting up to be a legendary Apple Cup. If you miss that game, you should just find another sport to follow.

Fifth: #23 Utah (5-2 / 3-2 PAC 12) kept their good mojo rolling at home against U$C (4-3 / 3-2 PAC 12) last Saturday, and 41-28 was the final tally. Utes junior QB Tyler Huntley (22 for 29 passing / 341 yards / 4 TD’s / 78.8 QBR / 16 carries / 33 rushing yards / 1 rushing TD) accounted for a handful of touchdowns against the Trojans, and yes I mean five. That is a very nice outing for the Utah quarterback, and an awful outing for the talented SC defense.

Sixth: I’m not going to say it, because he is “Just” Clay.

Seventh: The #24 Cardinal (5-2 / 3-1 PAC 12) ‘forked up’ the Sun Devils (3-4 / 1-3 PAC 12) plans in the desert Thursday night, beating ASU 20-13 in a tight one. With All-World running back Bryce “Dr.” Love already hurt, Stanford junior quarterback K.J. Costello (22 for 29 passing / 231 yards / 1 TD / 93.9 QBR / 4 carries / 18 rushing yards / 4.5 YPC) also suffered a significant injury, when his throwing hand was stepped on in a pile-up. However, Costello showed tremendous heart and poise in battling through and finishing the game with a right hand that was clearly not right.

Eighth: With Love sidelined, Stanford senior running back Cameron Scarlett (9 carries / 54 yards rushing / 1 TD / 6.0 YPC / 114 all-purpose yards) ran hard for The Card. At 6’2” 220 lbs, Scarlett is one of the rare bigger backs who is also capable catching the ball out of the backfield and returning kicks.

Ninth: U₵LA is on a hot streak folks, winning their second game in a row, after losing their first five. I guess you could say that they and Colorado are trending opposite directions currently, like Google and La Croix, though honestly I am not qualified to offer any kind of market analysis on that comparison. Anyhow, this past Saturday the Bruins (2-5 / 2-2 PAC 12) had the last roar against the Wildcats (3-5 / 3-2 PAC 12), clawing out a 31-30 victory in front of the home crowd at The Rose Bowl.

Tenth: Bruins junior tailback Joshua “Machine Gun” Kelley (31 carries / 136 rushing yards / 1 TD / 4.4 YPC / 181 all-purpose yards) was again a violent man with the ball in his hands, this time against Arizona. In his last four games, Kelley is averaging 160.5 all-purpose yards per. The Kelly’s/Kelley’s, “Machine Gun” and “Baby Blue Chip” respectively, have figured something out in Pasadena. #Kelly2Kelley #TheLawFirmOfKelly&Kelley

Eleventh: The CAL Bears figured out what everyone else already knew on Saturday, that the best way to snap a three-game losing streak, is a trip to Corvallis. The Bears (4-3 / 1-3 PAC 12) devoured the “Dam” Beavers (1-6 / 0-4 PAC 12) 49-7 on the road. CAL senior RB Patrick “He Ain’t Never Scared” Laird (22 carries / 193 yards rushing / 2 rushing TD’s / 8.8 YPC / 3 receptions / 48 yards receiving / 1 receiving TD / 16.0 YPR) went off on the “Dam” Beaves, to somehow further the distress of the Oregon State faithful.

Twelfth: I only moderately partook in cocktailing for the Stanford vs. ASU game this past Thursday night, though the cold Baja Perrier (Pacifico) I did enjoy were spectacular. The way I see it, the three best PAC-12 games to be tipping adult beverages for this weekend are #14 Washington State (6-1) at #24 Stanford (5-2), ASU (3-4) at USC (4-3), and #23 Utah (5-2) at a resurgent UCLA (2-5) in The Rose Bowl on Thursday night. Good luck to all of your squads, and no matter the final results, please feel free to drop a line here on your favorite beers, cocktails, and wines for game days. Cheers y’all.