Pac-12 Power Rankings: Two Teams In Control Moving Into Final Quarter Of Regular Season

Oct 31, 2023, 2:28 PM

SALT LAKE CITY – There appears to be a clear top-two in the Pac-12 as the Conference of Champions heads into the final quarter of the regular season.

Washington and Oregon appear to be by far and away the two best teams in the Pac-12 in 2023 while there is a pretty strong mid-tier group capable of creating a lot of chaos in the conference’s last football moments of existence.

Here is how the Pac-12 shook out in week nine.

Pac-12 Power Rankings 2023 Season: Week Nine

There was a lot of buzz heading into the 2023 football season for the Pac-12 and rightfully so. The league looks as strong as ever after having finished the previous season with six ranked teams which is where they sit nine weeks into the 2023 season. Those teams returned most of the same talent, while others went to work stepping up their game.

Those efforts have showed well the past nine weeks leaving Pac-12 fans feeling good (and admittedly a little sad) about where things are heading during the league’s “farewell season”.

1. Washington (8-0, 5-0)

Washington 42 | Stanford 33

Washington remains the only unbeaten team in the conference but has been showing some “chinks” in the armor as of late. They put some space between themselves and Stanford but not as much as most likely thought they would. They have a big game this weekend against one of the Pac-12 “disrupters”.

This week: at USC, 5:30 pm MT, ABC

2. Oregon (7-1, 4-1)

Oregon 35| Utah 6

The Ducks did some unspeakable things to the Utes over the weekend. If we are being honest, Oregon is looking more the part than Washington, but since the Huskies have a win over them and no losses, they remain number one. A better decision or two from Dan Lanning nearly three weeks ago and this list would look different.

This week: at home against Cal, 3:30 p.m. MT, Pac-12 Networks

3. USC (7-2, 3-1)

USC 50 | Cal 49

Are there flaws in these stars? Yup. However, while USC has two losses on their season, only one so far has been in-conference which puts them ahead of the other two-loss teams in the Pac-12 but below one loss-in conference Oregon. This week will be interesting.

This week: at home against Washington, 5:30 pm MT, ABC

4. Utah (6-2, 3-2)

Utah 6 | Oregon 35

This is where things get hard. Utah is one of three teams sitting at 6-2 on the season and 3-2 in conference. Last week’s game was not great. However, I can’t think of many teams that could have the injuries the Utes do and still manage to sit with the record they have after playing the schedule they have. For now that counts for something.

This week: at home against ASU, 12:00 p.m. MT, Pac-12 Networks

5. UCLA (6-2, 3-2)

UCLA 28 | Colorado 16

Has the defense to wreck someone’s season this year and they’ve continually shown it holding an explosive Colorado offense to just 16 points.

This week: at Arizona, 8:30 p.m. MT, FS1

6. Oregon State (6-2, 3-2)

Oregon State 24 | Arizona 27

Oregon State had a tough week against an Arizona team that feels like it’s peaking at the right time.

This week: at Colorado, 8:00 p.m. MT, ESPN

7. Arizona (5-3, 3-2)

Arizona 27 | Oregon State 24

Arizona has been looking for a “big win” under head coach Jedd Fisch for a few seasons now and they’ve continually come really close but struggled to get over the hump. That ended last Saturday against a very good Oregon State team.

This week: at home against UCLA, 8:30 pm MT, FS1

8. Colorado (4-4, 1-4)

Colorado 16 | UCLA 28

Colorado lost to a tough UCLA team and there is zero shame in that, but it does feel like some of the luster of “Prime Time” is wearing off at this point.

This week: at home against Oregon State, 8:00 p.m. MT, ESPN

9. Washington State (4-4, 1-4)

Washington State 27 | Arizona State 38

It feels like the wheels have completely come off for the Cougars after a really strong start. This was a pretty significant loss to a not very good team, though the Sun Devils deserve a lot of credit for always bringing the effort this year.

This week: at home against Stanford, 7:00 pm MT, Pac-12 Networks

10. Cal (3-5, 1-4)

Cal 49 | USC 50

USC is dang lucky to have walked out of Berkley with a win. Cal took it to them for most of the game but ultimately lost after the Trojans decided to wake up at the last second.

This week: at Oregon, 3:30 pm MT, Pac-12 Networks

11. Arizona State (2-6, 1-4)

Arizona State 38| Washington State 27

There is no denying Arizona State has consistently been bringing the effort in 2023 despite being severely outmatched by most of their conference-mates. The effort finally paid off after they got their first conference win over a reeling Washington State team.

This week: at Utah, 12:00 p.m. MT, Pac-12 Networks

12. Stanford (2-6, 1-6)

Stanford 33 | Washington 42

The Cardinal showed some fight against the Huskies, but not enough to get the W.

This week: at Washington State, 7:00 p.m. MT, Pac-12 Networks

Michelle Bodkin is the Utah Utes Insider for KSLsports.com and host of both the Crimson Corner Podcast (SUBSCRIBE) and The Saturday Show (Saturday from 10 a.m.–12 p.m.) on The KSL Sports Zone. Follow her on XInstagram, and Threads: @BodkinKSLsports

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Pac-12 Power Rankings: Two Teams In Control Moving Into Final Quarter Of Regular Season