The PAC-12 Week 6 Review only has four matchups this week but they were all well worth tuning in for. Starting with a thriller between Oregon State and Washington State.
Oregon State and Washington State played out a thrilling math up, with the Cougars coming out 31-24 winners. The Beavers were looking to keep a strong hold at the top of the PAC-12 North with a win, but caught Washington State on a good day. Cougars quarterback Jayden de Laura had figures of 32 passes from 46 attempts, 399 yards and 3 touchdowns. De Laura also threw an interception before the half. On 3rd and goal he rolled to the right and saw his pass tipped by an Oregon State defender and into the end zone which was caught by Beavers linebacker Omar Speights. It was the second time in the 2nd quarter Washington State had got inside the oppositions 10 yard line and come away with nothing.
In the second had they were more clinical. On 5 possessions they scored 4 touchdowns, the 5th possession was to close out the game. Cougar receiver Travell Harris had 147 receiving yards receiving, with the rest of de Laura’s yards spread about. On the other sideline, the Beavers quarterback Chance Nolan struggled with just 158 passing yards, 2 interceptions and an under 50% completion percentage.
One of his interceptions came in the Cougars red zone at 10-10. The run game was leaned on again and passed over 300 rushing yards, but couldn’t keep up with the Cougars in the second half. Running back B.J. Baylor rushed for over 100 yards for the 4th time in 5 games this season. Baylor now has 678 yards on the season in just 5 games. Washington State will hope to carry this form into the match against Stanford next week. Oregon State are on a bye week next, then plays Utah.
Utah piled more misery on USC and kept the pressure on Arizona State, with a 42-26 win. Utah started the game well and in the 3rd quarter took the game totally away from the Trojans with two early touchdowns in just over 3 minutes. The first was a 43 yard burst from running back Tavion Thomas, then quarterback Cam Rising ran in a 17 yard score. The Utes were put in a good position for the second score thanks to an interception by safety Vonte Davis, who returned it 30 yards and had 15 yards on top of that after a unsportsmanlike conduct call on Trojans receiver Drake London.
Utah QB Cameron Rising had his best game so far, since taking over from the departed Charlie Brewer. Rising finished with figures of 22 from 28 passes completed, 306 yards and 3 touchdowns. He spread the ball around nicely, finding 9 different targets, the main beneficiary was Devaughn Vele with 84 receiving yards and a touchdown. Utah running back Tavion Thomas had 113 rushing yards from 16 attempts. The defence was excellent, holding USC to just 10 points in the first 3 quarters. For the Trojans it continues to be up and down, with them still looking for back-to-back wins.
As I have wrote most weeks, Drake London again was the shining light with 162 receiving yards and a touchdown. They need to up their red zone efficiency. Twice getting inside the Utah 20 and twice settling for field goal attempts, one of them a missed one. Next up for USC is a bye week before taking on top 25 ranked Notre Dame. Utah have a massive PAC-12 South game against Arizona State early Sunday morning (BST).
UCLA stepped up in the second half to beat winless Arizona 34-16, after a sluggish first half. The Bruins were lucky to be leading 14-13 at the break. The Wildcats got themselves into the UCLA red zone on their first two drives, but had to settle for field goals on both occasions. The second time they were 2nd and 10 on the oppositions 20 yard line, but a fumble which they recovered forced them back to 3rd and 21. Looking after the ball continues to be an issue for Arizona, twice in the second half they coughed up possession to UCLA with lost fumbles.
You can see why they are a team that are now 17 games without a win and I can’t see where a win for Jedd Fisch is going to come from. Wildcats quarterback Jordan McCloud was having a decent day, but was forced off with a leg injury after he was sacked in the 3rd quarter. UCLAs running game was the key to victory, combining for 329 total yards on the ground. Both Brittain Brown and Zach Charbonnet passed 100 rushing yards again, with Brown adding a score. Bruins QB Dorian Thompson-Robinson picked up 2 rushing touchdowns himself, with his arm taking a backseat again.
DTR only had 82 passing yards from 19 attempts, only 8 of them completed. He did manage to find tight end Greg Dulcich for the first UCLA score of the game, but he was sloppy at times with the ball. The Bruins will need to play a lot better on both sides of the ball when they travel to play Washington next week. Arizona will play Colorado next, hoping QB Jordan McCloud can suit up.
In the early hours of Saturday morning, Arizona State put pressure on the teams below them in the PAC-12 South. They beat Stanford 28-10 at the Sun Devil Stadium, to go 5-1 on the season. The Arizona State run game was on form once again, with 255 yards on the ground and 3 touchdowns. Running back Rachaad White continues to impress, adding a further 96 rushing yards and a touchdown to his impressive season so far. Looking at the ASU backfield and they have a handful of guys that can step up. Daniyel Ngata was quieter this week, but sophomore Deamonte Trayanum stepped up with 50 yards from 9 carriers.
Also dual threat QB Jayden Daniels, had 76 yards on the ground, the bulk of that coming from the first score of the game. Daniels took of on a winding run for 51 yards, after a nice little pump fake. Daniels only had 175 passing yards, but when the run game is on point like Arizona State’s. the passing game can take a step back. Stanford will rue the turnovers, all 3 coming from quarterback Tanner McKee.
Tanner McKee feels the heat
McKee came into this game without an interception this season, but it was a tough day at the office for the sophomore QB. One of his interceptions was returned for a touchdown, but not by the player who picked him off. DB Deandre Pierce was the beneficiary of a clever lateral pass from fellow DB Jack Jones, Pierce burst 27 yards into the end zone and give ASU a 28-10 lead, late in the 3rd quarter.
Tanner McKee still had 356 yards passing on the day and a touchdown. The touchdown throw was a nice touch pass to receiver Elijah Higgins, who also went over 100 yards receiving on the day. Tight End Benjamin Yurosek also had over 100 yards. The sophomore looked one to put on your watch list for the future. As well as the turnovers, it was the running game that was flat for the Cardinal. They managed just 13 rushing yards, 32 were taken away by negative runs by QB Tanner McKee.
A disappointing showing from Stanford, after their impressive win over Oregon last week. Next week they have a winnable game against Washington State. Can anybody stop Herm Edwards and the Sun Devils from scooping the PAC-12 South this season? They have a big clash with Utah next week before their bye week.
Written by Jordan Merritt @Jordm87