Saturday, November 21, 2009

Pacific 10 takes the spotlight
Who would have thought at the beginning of the season that most of the college football world's attention would be focused on the Pacific 10 at the end of the season. For the last eight years, USC has had the conference championship wrapped up by late November, but not this year.
Four teams--Oregon, Oregon St., Arizona and Stanford, all have a chance at winning a trip to the Rose Bowl New Year's Day to play Ohio St. Oregon has the inside lane if it beats Arizona tonight in Tucson, a nationally televised game, then holds off Oregon St. in the Civil War rivalry next Thursday night, which will be broadcast on ESPN.
Even UCLA, whose chances of making it into a bowl game a few weeks ago looked pretty slim, can qualify for some holiday playing time today if it beats Arizona St. at home. A victory would give the Bruins six wins, which was Coach Rick Neuheisel's goal for his team all along.
All of this late season competition, of course, was made possible by USC's collapse, which started on Halloween night against Oregon and continued into last Saturday against Stanford. The Trojans have a bye this weekend before meeting crosstown rival UCLA next Saturday night at the Coliseum.

Add Stanford-USC: Reports out of the Midwest indicate that a pregame tiff between Cardinal Coach Jim Harbaugh and USC's Pete Carroll may have led to a Stanford two-point conversion attempt with the Cardinal leading by four touchdowns. According to Iowa and Michigan sources, Harbaugh became irritated when some USC players wouldn't leave Stanford's side of the field during warmups. Harbaugh reportedly asked Carroll what was going on and the USC coach is said to have responded, "they're just having fun."
The two-point conversion attempt failed, but Stanford crushed USC anyway, 55-21.

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