SI Pac-12 Power Rankings Week 9: UCLA Football falls from top spot

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The Pac-12’s Fan Nation and Sports Illustrated editors have joined forces to present their views on conference hierarchy for Week 9 of the 2022 season.

UCLA football (6-1, 3-1) fell from No. 1 to No. 2 in the latest edition of the SI Pac-12 Power Rankings after the team lost to Oregon 45-30 away. There was no consensus as to where the Bruins belonged compared to their conference opponents, with some punishing them more drastically for the loss than others.

Ducks Digest, All Cardinal, All Bruins and All Trojans were the best at UCLA, taking it to #2. Cal Sports Report pushed the Bruins to No. 3, but it was All Utes and Inside the Huskies who bottomed out, landing on them at No. 4.

USC stayed at No. 3 in its farewell week, stealing a first vote from Oregon, while Utah fell from No. 2 to No. 4 after its own farewell. The last game both teams played was head-to-head, and the Utes prevailed in that showdown in Salt Lake City.

UCLA, USC and Utah were all separated by four points, leaving this major league’s pecking order very volatile going forward.

Here are the full power rankings, along with the ballots and some quick thoughts from each of the editors:

1. Oregon, 83 points (6 first place votes)
2nd UCLA, 72 points
3rd USC, 71 points (1 first vote)
4. Utah, 68 points
5. Washington, 53 points
6. Oregon State, 52 points
7. Washington State, 42 points
8. Arizona, 30 points
9. Stanford, 27 points
10th Cal, 25 points
11. Arizona State, 16 points
12. Colorado, 7 points

JAKE CURTIS, CAL SPORTS REPORT

1st Oregon, 2nd USC, 3rd UCLA, 4th Utah, 5th Washington, 6th Oregon State, 7th Washington State, 8th Stanford, 9th Cal, 10th Arizona, 11th Arizona State, 12th Colorado

Comment: It seems like a different team is number 1 every week, and that trend is likely to continue. I’m still waiting for one of the top four teams to lose to one of the other eight teams, but it will happen. I’m also waiting for a Pac-12 team to play some defense. The first team to get a stop wins the conference.

MAX TORRES, DUCK DIGESTION

1.Oregon; 2.UCLA; 3.USC; 4. Utah; 5. Washington; 6. State of Oregon; 7. Washington State; 8th cal.; 9.Arizona; 10. State of Arizona; 11.Stanford; 12. Colorado

Comment: Oregon has established itself as the Pac-12’s top team. At least for now. Anything but dominating Cal and Colorado over the next two weeks will be a disappointment. The defense needs to continue improving before returning to Eugene where they host rival Washington.

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KEVIN BORBA, ALL CARDINAL

1.Oregon; 2.UCLA; 3. Utah; 4.USC; 5. Washington; 6. State of Oregon; 7. Washington State; 8.Arizona; 9.Stanford; 10th cal.; 11th ASU; 12. Colorado

Comment: Oregon has to be the top team in the Pac-12 right now, and they look like the hottest team in the country. Stanford came by with an ugly win over Arizona State, but the team finally has some momentum for the year. Unfortunately, they face a tough UCLA team this week, and the injury bug sweeping the Cardinal again isn’t going to help. Defender and kicker Josh Karty currently carries this team.

SAM CONNON, ALL BRUINS

1.Oregon; 2.UCLA; 3. Utah; 4.USC; 5. Oregon State; 6. Washington; 7. Washington State; 8.Arizona; 9.Stanford; 10th cal.; 11. State of Arizona; 12. Colorado

Comment: The top four teams in the conference are still the top four teams in the conference, and now that Oregon has beaten UCLA, the round-robin between them is on hold for a couple of weeks. It’s difficult to really put them in a definitive order as they’ve all been cannibalizing each other a bit lately, but perhaps a flurry in the hands of Washington, Oregon State or a bottom-feeder in the near future could keep some of theirs alive show colors .

WYATT ALLSUP, ALL TROJANS

1.Oregon; 2.UCLA; 3.USC; 4. Utah; 5. Oregon State; 6. Washington; 7. Washington State; 8.Arizona; 9.Stanford; 10. State of Arizona; 11th cal.; 12. Colorado

Comment: Oregon has been quietly having a very strong season and getting the job done in all the games it should win. Being outclassed by Georgia in Week 1 took the heat out of this team and lowered expectations, but maybe the Ducks are as good as ever. As of now, this is the team to beat in the conference. One from USC or Utah will likely have a chance to prove their case as the Pac-12’s best in a championship matchup against Oregon unless UCLA wins.

COLE BAGLEY, ALL THE UTES

1.Oregon; 2. Utah; 3.USC; 4.UCLA; 5. Oregon State; 6. Washington; 7. Washington State; 8.Arizona; 9th cal.; 10.Stanford; 11. State of Arizona; 12. Colorado

Comment: Almost every week, Oregon has been gaining momentum, proving that their performance against Georgia was just an unfortunate fluke. After their emphatic win over UCLA last weekend, the Ducks now sit at the front of the conference and have a strong chance of finding themselves in December’s Pac-12 championship game. The only thing really standing in their way right now is a Nov. 19 matchup against Utah, which could very well decide who goes and who stays, provided those teams win the remaining games on their schedule.

DAN RALEY, INSIDE THE HUSKIES

1.USC; 2.Oregon; 3. Utah; 4.UCLA; 5. Washington; 6. State of Oregon; 7. Washington State; 8.Stanford; 9th cal.; 10.Arizona; 11. State of Arizona; 12. Colorado

Comment: By now we can see that the Pac-12 is divided into 3 tiers – 4 championship contenders, 4 teams just looking for a bowl game, and 4 teams going nowhere. Will we see another movement in a month? I like both schools in Oregon and wasn’t sure what to think of them when the season started. I don’t see a big difference between the top four teams overall. UW has plenty of offense to always be entertaining, but not enough to make D stand out from the middle class.

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