This Week in Pac-10 Football (10/23/00)

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OUT OF OUR LEAGUE: With just one regular season non-conference game remaining (Notre Dame at USC, Nov. 25), the Pac-10 has had an outstanding season against outside competition. The Pac-10's non-conference record stands at 23-7 (.767) overall and 22-7 (.759) vs. Division IA opponents. Of the Pac-10's seven losses, four have come to teams ranked in the Top 25. The Pac-10 has a remarkable 5-4 record against Top 25 teams and has posted four wins against teams ranked in the Top 5 with UCLA knocking off No. 3 Alabama and No. 3 Michigan, Washington defeating No. 4 Miami and Stanford handling No. 5 Texas.

2000 PAC-10 PLAYERS OF THE WEEK:

Week Offense Defense Special TeamsSep. 2 DeShaun Foster, TB, UCLA Joe Tafoya, DE, ARIZ Nick Murphy, P, ASUSep. 9 Marques Tuiasosopo, QB, WASH Andre Carter, DE, CAL David Newbury, PK, USCSep. 16 Jason Gesser, QB, WSU Larry Tripplett, NT, WASH Nick Harris, P, CALSep. 23 Maurice Morris, TB, ORE DeLawrence Grant, DE, OSU Keith Lewis, ST, ORESep. 30 Ken Simonton, TB, OSU Idris Haroon, DE, ARIZ Kurtis Doerr, P, OREOct. 7 Paul Arnold, TB, WASH Michael Jolivette, CB, ARIZ Anousith Wilaikul, PK, WSUOct. 14 Joey Harrington, QB, ORE Nnamdi Asomugha, FS, CAL Gary Love, RS/ST, ARIZOct. 21 Jonathan Smith, QB, OSU Saul Patu, DE, ORE Ryan Cesca, PK, OSU

SERIES NOTES FOR THE GAMES OF OCT. 28:

OREGON (6-1) at ARIZONA STATE (5-2) - 12:30 MST/PDT- ABC - The Series: Arizona State and Oregon have met an even 20 times with the Sun Devils leading the series 13-7. Oregon has won the last two, the teams have split the last six. The Devils have a 7-2 advantage in games played at Tempe and have won two straight at home. The Ducks last victory at Tempe came in 1993 (45-36). . . . Arizona State coach Bruce Snyder is an Oregon alum, who played linebacker and fullback for the Ducks under legendary coach Len Casanova. Snyder began his coaching career at Eugene's Sheldon High School and began his college coaching career as an Oregon assistant (1965-71). . . . Last Year: Oregon and Arizona State met at Eugene and the Ducks pulled out a dramatic 20-17 comeback victory as QB Joey Harrington hit WR Marshaun Tucker with a 29-yard TD pass with nine seconds remaining in the game. The Sun Devils had just taken the lead with a TD with 1:04 to go in the game, but Harrington calmly drove the Ducks to the winning score. Both teams ran the ball for more than 200 yards and Oregon piled up 502 yards total offense. But the ASU defense limited the Pac-10's highest scoring team to 18 points under its season average.

CALIFORNIA (2-5) at USC (3-4) - 3:30 PDT - FOX Syndication - The Series: USC and California have met 87 times dating to 1915 and uninterrupted since 1926. The Trojans leads the series 54-28-5, although the Golden Bears have won three of the last four overall, including the last two meetings at Los Angeles. . . . USC coach Paul Hackett was an assistant at Cal from 1972-75. . . . Last Year: California and USC met at Berkeley and the Golden Bear defense lived up to its top ranking in the Pac-10 in spearheading a 17-7 Cal victory. The Bear defense recorded 15 tackles for 74 yards in losses, including nine quarterback sacks, and forced four turnovers, one of which was an interception returned for a touchdown. The Trojan defense was equally impressive in limiting Cal to nine first downs, 82 yards rushing and 232 yards total offense. A bright spot for SC was frosh WR Kareem Kelly, who had nine catches for 170 yards, including a 72-yard scoring reception.

UCLA (4-3) at ARIZONA (5-2) - 4:00 MST/PDT - ABC - The Series: UCLA and Arizona have met 25 times with the Bruins leading the series 14-9-2. In a dozen games played at Tucson, the Wildcats lead 7-5. It has been an even series of late as the teams have split the last 12 games with neither winning more than two in a row since 1989. It has not necessarily been close, however, as the average margin of victory in the last four games has been 20 points. . . . Arizona coach Dick Tomey served as an assistant at UCLA from 1971-76. . . . Last Year: Arizona and UCLA met at the Rose Bowl and the Wildcats put on a dominating performance in pounding the Bruins 33-7. On the offensive side, Arizona put up 307 yards rushing and 588 yards total offense. Defensively, the Wildcat defenders posted nine quarterback sacks for minus-78 yards and allowed UCLA just 234 yards total offense. Thanks in large measure to the sack yardage, UA limited UCLA to minus-31 yards rushing on 30 official carries. DT Joe Tafoya led the Cat sackers with three.

WASHINGTON STATE (3-4) at OREGON STATE (6-1) - 7:15 PDT- FOX Sports Net - The Series: Washington State and Oregon State are old Pacific Northwest rivals that have met 85 times dating to 1903. The Cougars hold a narrow 44-38-3 series lead. WSU has won 12 of the last 14, although the teams have split the last four overall and the last two at Corvallis. WSU coach Mike Price and OSU counterpart Dennis Erickson are old pals who grew up in Everett, Washington, both attending and playing quarterback at Everett High School. Erickson was head coach at Washington State for two years (1987-88) and was succeeded at WSU by Price in 1989 when Erickson went to Miami. . . . Last Year: Oregon State and Washington State squared off on a windy day at Pullman and the Beavers got their first win in the Palouse since 1978 with a hard-fought 27-13 victory. OSU star RB Ken Simonton sat out the first half with bruised ribs, but played in the second and scored on two short touchdown runs to provide the Beavers the winning cushion. Freshman RB Deon Burnett was a bright spot forWSU in rushing 20 times for 112 yards (5.6) and the Cougs' only TD.

WASHINGTON (6-1) at STANFORD (3-4) - 2:00 PDT - The Series: Washington and Stanford have met 72 times dating back to 1893 with the Huskies holding a slim 36-32-4 series advantage. However, it has been all Washington of late as the Huskies have won three in a row and 13 of the last 14 games. Stanford's lone win against the Huskies since 1983 was a 46-28 home win in 1994. Site doesn't seem to matter much as UW has won seven of the last nine played at Palo Alto. . . . Last Year: Washington and Stanford met at Seattle and the Huskies handed the Rose Bowl-bound Cardinal its only Conference loss of the year 35-30. It was a case of too much Tui, as UW QB Marques Tuiasosopo put his name in the college football record book by becoming the first player in NCAA Division I history to pass for 300 yards and rush for 200 yards in a game. Tuiasosopo, who was injured on the second play of the game suffering a major bruise to the hip/buttocks area, rushed 22 times for 207 yards (9.4) and two TDs and passed for 302 yards and another score. His heroics were needed as the Huskies had to overcome a 23-12 third-quarter deficit to pull out the win. There was plenty of offense as both teams passed for 300 yards and UW added 368 yards rushing for 670 yards total offense. Other Huskies coming up big were PK John Anderson, who was 3-3 on field goals from 49, 40 and 40 yards, and CB Anthony Vontoure, who came up with two big interceptions. For Stanford, RB Brian Allen rushed for 101 yards and WR DeRonnie Pitts pulled in nine receptions for 109 yards and one TD. Card FL Troy Walters caught five passes during the game to become the Pac-10's all-time receiving leader.

PAC-10 NOTES:

CURRENT STREAKS: Longest winning streak - 5 games - Oregon Longest Conference-game winning streak - 9 games - Oregon Longest home winning streak - 19 games - Oregon Longest road winning streak - 1 game - ASU, Oregon, OSU, Washington

HOME/ROAD/OPEN DATES: In 20 Conference games to date, home teams have gone 12-8 (.600). Teams coming off open dates this year have gone 6-2.

HOME WINNING STREAKS--CURRENT: 33 Florida State 19 Oregon

HOME WINNING STREAKS--ALL-TIME PAC-10: 26 California, 1919-23 20 USC, 1927-29 19 Oregon, 1997-2000

HOME WINNING STREAKS--CONFERENCE GAMES: 12 Oregon, 1997-2000 12 USC, 1986-89

PAC-10 CAREER CHARTS (includes bowl games):

Rushing Receiving 6. 3731 Gaston Green, UCLA, 1984-87 1. 248 Troy Walters, STAN, 1996-99 7. 3724 Anthony Davis, USC, 1972-74 2. 223 Dennis Northcutt, ARIZ, 1996-99 8. 3689 Ricky Bell, USC, 1973-76 223 Darrin Nelson, STAN, 1977-81 9. 3519 Rueben Mayes, WSU, 1982-85 4. 202 DeRonnie Pitts, STAN, 1997- 10. 3508 Ken Simonton, OSU, 1998-

BUTKUS AWARD SEMI-FINALISTS NAMED: Three Pac-10 players are included among the 11 semi-finalists to the Butkus Award, which is awarded annually to the best linebacker in college football--Adam Archuleta of Arizona State, Matt Smith of Oregon and Robert Thomas of UCLA. The Pac-10 and ACC led all conferences in semi-finalists for the award with three each.

BOWL BOUND: It's still October, but already Oregon, Oregon State and Washington have registered the six victories necessary to be eligible to play in a post-season bowl game. Arizona and Arizona State are just a win away at 5-2.

ARIZONA finishes the season with three of last four games at home. . . . Wildcat defense held high-powered Oregon offense to a season-low 260 yards total offense last week. . . . Arizona defense tops in the Pac-10 against the rush, allowing just 80.0 yards per game. Opponents getting just 2.2 yards per rush and Cats have allowed only two rushing TDs all year. . . . Arizona leads the league in punt returns with a 12.3 yards per runback. Anthony Banks is the individual league leader at 13.5 and Bobby Wade is third (8.0). . . . Wildcats lead the Pac-10 and are third in the nation in turnover margin at +12. . . . Frosh CB Michael Jolivette leads the Pac-10 in interceptions with five.

ARIZONA STATE coach Bruce Snyder recorded his 125th career victory at WSU last week. It also marked Snyder's 54th Pac-10 victory which moved him into a tie for 10th place with Washington's Jim Owens (1957-74) on the list of all-time Conference victories. . . . With five receptions at WSU last week, TE Todd Heap set a school record for career receptions by a tight end with 91. He has caught at least one pass in 22 straight games. . . . PK Mike Barth became the first kicker in ASU history to kick two game-winning field goals in one season. He nailed a 41-yard field goal as time expired to beat Colorado State (13-10) and hit another from 41 yards to take out WSU in OT last week (23-20). . . . ASU has scored first in all seven games this year. . . . On the opponents first possession of the last four games, the Sun Devils have caused a turnover. . . . Sun Devils lead the league in net punting (37.6). . . . WR Donnie O'Neal's 20.5 yard average per reception is best among Conference receivers with at least 20 catches.

CALIFORNIA defense got to elusive Washington QB Marques Tuiasosopo for five QB sacks last week (-31). Five different players got one each. . . . DE Andre Carter is the seasonal sack leader for Cal and is ranked tied for second in the Pac-10 with seven. As a team, Cal is tied for the Conference lead in sacks with 25 for 171 yards in losses. . . . On the other side of the ball, the Golden Bears are third in the Pac-10 in fewest sacks allowed with 16. . . . P Nick Harris is about to eclipse the NCAA record for punting yards in a career. Harris is already the Pac-10 career leader with 12,885 yards and needs just 63 more to surpass the NCAA record of 12,947 by TCU's Cameron Young (1976-79).

OREGON, at 4-0 the only team undefeated in Conference play, has the inside track to the Rose Bowl and is the only team to control its own destiny. Every other contender needs some help. . . . The Ducks own the longest current winning streak among Pac-10 teams at five straight, the longest Conference game winning streak at nine and the longest home winning streak at 19. That's the second-longest current home winning streak in the nation behind Florida State (33). . . . UO has tied the record for consecutive home Conference wins with 12 (USC 1986-89), however Ducks play three of last four on road. . . . UO defense posted eight QB sacks for minus-42 yards in 14-10 win against Arizona last week. The sack yardage helped the Ducks to hold Wildcats to just 17 net yards rushing on 32 attempts (0.5 yards per carry). . . . Ducks lead the Pac-10 in pass defense, total defense (278.9) and scoring defense (14.3). . . . Opponents completing just 39.6% of passes against the Ducks. . . . Oregon has lost just three fumbles and nine turnovers overall in seven games. . . . Duck offensive line has allowed just eight QB sacks in seven games.

OREGON STATE has a seven-game home winning streak going. It's the longest home winning streak for the Beavers since 1965. . . . OSU's 6-1 start is its best since 1964, the last Rose Bowl year for the Beavers. . . . TB Ken Simonton, a junior, has moved up into 10th place on the Pac-10 career rushing chart with 3,508 yards. With 994 yards so far this season, Simonton needs just six yards to become the first player in Pac-10 history to rush for 1,000 yards as a freshman, sophomore and junior. Simonton leads the Pac-10 and is fifth in the nation in rushing at 142.0 yards per game. . . . QB Jonathan Smith threw four TD passes to four different receivers in 44-38 win at UCLA last week OSU scored 23 straight fourth-quarter points to erase a 10-point deficit and claim the victory. Smith was picked off for the first time in five games, but passed for 351 yards and the four TDs. . . . Beavers rolled up 604 yards total offense at UCLA--253 rushing and 351 passing. . . . The win gave Oregon State a sweep of UCLA and USC for the first time ever. . . . PK Ryan Cesca was 3-3 on field goals and 5-5 on PATs in win at UCLA. The sophomore has yet to miss a PAT attempt at OSU going a perfect 67-67 thus far in his career. . . . OSU lost three turnovers at UCLA after having lost only four in the previous five games. . . . Beavers have picked off 12 passes this year while throwing only three picks themselves.

STANFORD WR DeRonnie Pitts, with a career-high 13 receptions vs. USC last week, has moved into fourth place on the Pac-10 career receiving chart with 202 catches. He is leading the Pac-10 in receiving by a large margin with 51 catches (runnerup Freddie Mitchell of UCLA has 43). . . . RB Kerry Carter rushed for a career-high four TDs against the Trojans. . . . QB Randy Fasani returned from a knee injury and played most of the way against USC. . . . Stanford is 11-3 in its last 13 Pac-10 games. . . . OLB Riall Johnson leads the Pac-10 with eight QB sacks. He has accounted for more than half of Stanford's total of 15.

UCLA looks to snap an eight-game road losing streak dating back to 1998 this week at Arizona. . . . Bruins had five-game home winning streak stopped by Oregon State last week. . . . TB DeShaun Foster, out with a broken hand, returned to action last week and scored UCLA's first TD last week. . . . Bruins have trailed in the first quarter of every game this year. . . . QB Cory Paus passed for a career-high 363 yards vs. OSU last week. . . . FL Freddie Mitchell just missed a fifth straight 100-yard receiving game with five catches for 94 yards vs. OSU. He is averaging 136.2 yards receiving over that five-game span. . . . P Nate Fikse leads the Pac-10 in punting with a 43.3-yard average, better than two yards more than any other league booter. . . . MLB Robert Thomas has forced a Pac-10-high five fumbles this year.

USC got the running game going last week at Stanford rushing for 230 yards and four TDs with a 7.9-yard average per carry. TB Sultan McCullough led the way with 130 yards on just 11 carries, an 11.8-yard per carry average. He currently is third in the Pac-10 in rushing at 100.3 yards per game. . . . USC's average of 4.3 yards per rush tops Pac-10. . . . OLB Markus Steele leads the Pac-10 in tackles for loss with 15. Running mate ILB Zeke Moreno is tied for third in the league with 12. . . . PK David Bell notched touchbacks on five of his six kickoffs at Stanford last week. He has had touchbacks on 22 of his 34 kickoffs on the season.

WASHINGTON has bounced back from loss at Oregon with three straight wins. . . . Huskies trailed 24-13 entering fourth quarter vs. California last week, but scored 23 unanswered points to pull out the win. In that fourth quarter, the Husky defense forced two fumbles, intercepted a pass and blocked a punt to set up the scoring. It was Washington's 18th straight win against Cal. . . . QB Marques Tuiasosopo became the Huskies' all-time leader in all-purpose yards last week. . . . Huskies have rushed for 17 TDs, most in the Pac-10. . . . Washington is Pac-10's top team in the red zone. Huskies have scored on 25 of 29 trips into the red zone (18 touchdowns, 7 field goals) for a percentage of .862.

WASHINGTON STATE has gotten at least one interception from each member of its starting secondary. . . . The outcome of WSU's last five games has been determined by seven points or less with the last two, both Cougar defeats, going into overtime. Washington State is the first Pac-10 team to ever be involved in an overtime game in consecutive weeks. . . . QB Jason Gesser was picked off three times by Arizona State last week after being picked only four times in previous six games. Gesser still leads the Pac-10 in TD passes with 16 and holds excellent 16-7 TD-INT ratio. He also leads Conference in passing yards (1,828), completion percentage (.556). pass efficiency (148.5) and total offense (266.3). . . . WSU leads the Pac-10 in pass efficiency (151.4). . . . Cougars average of 5.8 yards gained per play tops the Pac-10. . . . WSU has been successful on 8-11 (73%) fourth-down conversion attempts.

QUOTABLE:

Oregon State coach Dennis Erickson on the Beavers' 6-1 season to date: 'It gets more important with every game that you win. We are still in the thick of the Rose Bowl race right now and we must continue to play like we have been playing.'

A LOOK AHEAD: The schedule for Sat., Nov. 4:

ARIZONA at WASHINGTON USC at ARIZONA STATE OREGON STATE at CALIFORNIA OREGON at WASHINGTON STATE STANFORD at UCLA

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