This Week in Pac-10 Football (9/4/01)

Sept. 4, 2001

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COMING UP THIS WEEK: A full slate of 10 non-conference games this week with ARIZONA STATE, STANFORD and WASHINGTON making their season debuts. Seven of the games are at Pac-10 sites with Idaho at ARIZONA, San Diego State at ARIZONA STATE, BYU at CALIFORNIA, Utah at OREGON, Boston College at STANFORD (FOX SN), Kansas State at USC (FOX SN) and Michigan at WASHINGTON (ABC). Hitting the road are OREGON STATE at New Mexico State, UCLA at Kansas (FOX Synd.) and WASHINGTON STATE at Boise State. The schedule for Sat., Sep. 8 (note: Ranking is the AP [media] poll first, followed by the ESPN/USA Today [coaches] poll):


LAST WEEK: Arizona 23, San Diego State 10
USC 21, San Jose State 10
Washington State 36, Idaho 7
Illinois 44, California 17
Oregon 31, Wisconsin 28
Fresno State 44, Oregon State 24
UCLA 20, Alabama 17

2001 PAC-10 PLAYERS OF THE WEEK:


Week Offense Defense Special Teams
Sep. 1 Tab Perry, FL, UCLA Keith Lewis, FS, ORE Chris Griffith, PK, UCLA

PAC-10 IN THE POLLS: Four Pac-10 teams are ranked in the Top 25 in the polls and a total of seven Conference teams receive mention. Following are the preseason rankings of Pac-10 teams in the AP (media) and ESPN/USA Today (coaches) polls (note: coaches poll released prior to Oregon State's Sunday night game):


Team AP USA/
ESPN
Oregon (1-0) 7 8
UCLA (1-0) 14 14
Washington (0-0) 15 15
Oregon State (0-1) 22 12
USC (1-0) 28 28
Stanford (0-0) 37 46
Arizona State (0-0) t47 --

SERIES NOTES FOR THE GAMES OF SEP. 8:

UCLA (1-0) at KANSAS (1-0) - 11:30 CDT/9:30 PDT - Fox Syndication - The Series: UCLA and Kansas have met six times with the Bruins leading the series 4-2. UCLA won the first four meetings, Kansas the most recent two. The teams split the two previous games played at Lawrence with Kansas winning the most recent in 1978 (28-24). . . . Last Meeting: UCLA and Kansas met in the 1995 Aloha Bowl with the 11th-ranked Jayhawks piling up 548 yards total offense and pounding the Bruins 51-30. UCLA showed some offensive weapons as well with TB Karim Abdul-Jabbar rushing for 157 yards and QB Cade McNown throwing three TD passes. It was the final game of Terry Donahue's 20-year run as head coach of the Bruins.

UTAH (1-0) at OREGON (1-0) - 12:30 PDT - The Series: Oregon and Utah have met 23 times dating back to 1933 with the Ducks holding a 16-7 series advantage. Oregon is 8-4 in games played at Eugene. The Ducks have won the last two overall with the Utes last victory coming at Eugene in 1994 (34-16). . . . Last Meeting: Oregon and Utah met at Eugene in 1997 with the Ducks breaking open a close game in the second half to post a 31-13 victory. UO QB Jason Maas enjoyed a career day in passing for 369 yards and three TDs as the Duck offense put up 555 yards total offense. Utah's offense rushed for 239 yards, but the Oregon defense threw a shutout in the second half as the Ducks pulled away.

KANSAS STATE (0-0) at USC (1-0) - 3:30 PDT - FOX Sports Net national cablecast - The Series: First meeting between USC and Kansas State.

MICHIGAN (1-0) at WASHINGTON (0-0) -12:30 PDT - ABC national telecast - The Series: Washington and Michigan have met 10 times--three times at Seattle, three times at Ann Arbor and four times in the Rose Bowl. Michigan leads the series 6-4 overall and has won two of three previous games at Seattle, although Washington won the most recent Husky Stadium meeting in 1983 (25-24). The Huskies and Wolverines have split four Rose Bowl matchups. Both teams have been ranked in the Top 20 in each of the last six matchups. . . . Last Meeting: Washington and Michigan last met in the 1993 Rose Bowl Game (following the 1992 season). Michigan thwarted Washington's attempt to become the first team in history to win three consecutive Rose Bowl Games by downing the Huskies, 38-31, in a thriller that featured six lead changes. Wolverine TB Tyrone Wheatley rushed 15 times for 235 yards (15.7-yard average) and three TDs, including an 88-yard scoring run, still the longest run in Rose Bowl history. Husky QB Mark Brunell passed for 308 yards and two TDs in a losing cause in what proved to be coach Don James's final game as UW coach. The win gave Michigan an undefeated season at 9-0-3.

BYU (1-0) at CALIFORNIA (0-1) - 2:30 PDT - The Series: First trip to Berkeley for BYU which has played California just once previously. The Cougars downed the Bears, 38-28, at Provo in the teams only previous meeting. . . . Last Meeting: California ventured to Provo in 1999 and was downed, 38-28, by BYU. . . . Coaching Note: California coach Tom Holmoe was a three-year starter at cornerback at BYU (1980-82), earning All-WAC honors as a senior. He also began his coaching career at a graduate assistant for La Vell Edwards at BYU in 1990-91.

WASHINGTON STATE (1-0) at BOISE STATE (0-1) - 6:00 MDT/5:00 PDT - The Series: Washington State and Boise State have met just three times with the Cougars winning all three. WSU has averaged 44 points in the three games. Only one of the previous three was played in Boise with the Cougs winning, 33-21, in 1998. . . . Last Year: Washington State and Boise State met at Pullman with the Cougars winning 42-35 in a wide-open shootout. It was not settled until WSU scored on a fourth-and-goal one-yard run by Adam Hawkins with 1:15 left in the game. It was to be one of only two defeats for Boise State, which posted a 10-2 season under Dirk Koetter, who subsequently moved to Arizona State. The quarterbacks lit up the sky. For the Cougs, QB Jason Gesser passed for 290 yards and two TDs and rushed for another score. His Bronco counterpart Bart Hendricks threw for 335 yards and four scores.

OREGON STATE (0-1) at NEW MEXICO STATE (0-2) - 7:00 MDT/6:00 PDT - The Series: First meeting between Oregon State and New Mexico State.

IDAHO (0-1) at ARIZONA (1-0) - 7:00 MST - The Series: Arizona and Idaho have met 10 times, but not since 1964. All of the games have been played at Tucson with the Wildcats leading the series 8-2. . . . Last Meeting: Arizona and Idaho have not met since 1964 when the Wildcats won, 14-7, at Tucson.

SAN DIEGO STATE (0-1) at ARIZONA STATE (0-0) - 7:00 MST/PDT - The Series: Arizona State and San Diego State have met eight times and the Sun Devils are undefeated with a 7-0-1 series advantage. Only two of the previous games have been played at Tempe, and it's been awhile, as ASU posted home victories in 1950 (31-13) and 1956 (61-0). In four of the previous eight meetings, the Aztecs were shutout by the Devils. . . . Last Year: Arizona State and San Diego State opened the season at San Diego with the Sun Devils winning a defensive struggle, 10-7, in a game that featured 23 punts. PK Mike Barth snapped a 7-7 tie with a 21-yard field goal early in the fourth quarter to provide the winning margin and ASU blocked an Aztec field goal try at the end of the game to hold on for the victory. Redshirt freshman QB Jeff Krohn made his starting debut for the Devils.

BOSTON COLLEGE (1-0) at STANFORD (0-0) - 7:00 PDT - FOX Sports Net national cablecast - The Series: Stanford and Boston College have met just twice with each winning a home game to split the series. Stanford won (33-14) at Palo Alto in 1979, BC prevailed at Boston (30-13) in 1980. . . . Last Meeting: Stanford journeyed to Boston College in 1980 and the Golden Eagles broke open a close game in the second half to stun the No. 13-ranked Cardinal 30-13. In a physical game, BC outrushed Stanford 260-98. Card QB John Elway completed 21 of 36 for 259 yards, but was intercepted four times. Stanford's only TD came on a scoring pass from Elway to RB Darrin Nelson.

OUT OF OUR LEAGUE: The Pac-10 got off to a fast start going 5-2 vs. non-conference foes in the first week. Included were victories against two Top 25 teams as Oregon downed No. 22 Wisconsin (31-28) and UCLA won at No. 25 Alabama (20-17).

CURRENT STREAKS:
Longest overall winning streak - 8 games - Washington
Longest Conference-game winning streak - 7 games - Washington
Longest home winning streak - 21 games - Oregon
Longest road winning streak - 3 games - Washington

HOME WINNING STREAKS--CURRENT:
35 - Florida State
21 - Oregon

HOME WINNING STREAKS--ALL-TIME PAC-10:
26 - California, 1919-23
21 - Oregon, 1997-2001

AWARDS: The awards lists keep rolling out and Pac-10 players receive prominent mention. Three Pac-10 performers are included on the 'watch list' for the Outland Trophy, which is presented to the top interior lineman in college football by the Football Writers Association of America--C Chris Gibson of Oregon State, C Scott Peters of Arizona State and NT Larry Tripplett of Washington. . . . And five Pac-10 players are on the 'watch list' for the Butkus award, given to the nation's best collegiate linebacker--James Allen of Oregon State, Solomon Bates of Arizona State, Lance Briggs of Arizona, Raonall Smith of Washington State and Robert Thomas of UCLA. . . . And finally, the Pac-10 leads all conferences with seven running backs on the preseason candidate list for the Doak Walker Award, presented to the top college running back--Clarence Farmer of Arizona, Delvon Flowers of Arizona State, DeShaun Foster of UCLA, Joe Igber of California, Sultan McCullough of USC, David Minnich ow Washington State and Ken Simonton of Oregon State.

CONFERENCE: In the last five years, the Pac-10 team that has gone to the Rose Bowl has featured the first-string All-Conference quarterback--Jake Plummer (Arizona State), Ryan Leaf (Washington State), Cade McNown (UCLA), Todd Husak (Stanford) and Marques Tuiasosopo (Washington). With the exception of Leaf, all were senior quarterbacks. . . . The senior starters at quarterback in 2001--Joey Harrington of Oregon, second-team All-Pac-10 QB last year, Jonathan Smith of Oregon State, honorable mention in 2000, and Randy Fasani of Stanford.

ARIZONA: In season-opening 23-10 win at San Diego State, Wildcat defense limited Aztecs to 201 yards total offense, just 41 yards rushing, and forced three fumbles, with SS Brandon Nash returning one of them 57 yards for a touchdown that put the Cats ahead in the game for good. . . . Victory at San Diego got new coach John Mackovic off to a winning start. His reaction? 'It was great to get the win, but now it is more a matter of what we do with it. We need to improve on everything.' . . . Opening win snapped five-game losing streak UA carried over from end of last season.

ARIZONA STATE: As head coach at Boise State last year, Dirk Koetter directed a program that led the nation in scoring offense, was second in total offense and fourth in passing offense. Koetter will act as his own offensive coordinator as the Sun Devils install his high-flying offense. . . . Koetter, age 42, has put together the youngest staff in the Pac-10 and one of the youngest in the country with an average age of 35. . . . ASU also has installed a new attacking defense characterized by movement. It utilizes an unusual 4-2-5 alignment that employs three safeties. . . . Starting QB Jeff Krohn's father, Jim, was the quarterback at rival Arizona in the late 1970s and still stands seventh on the Wildcat career passing list. . . . ASU's Sun Devil Stadium will host the Pac-10 Champion in the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl at the conclusion of this season, unless the Pac-10 champ manages a No. 1 or 2 spot in the final BCS ranking, in which case its off to the Rose Bowl for a shot at the national championship.

CALIFORNIA: Bright spot for the Bears in season-opening loss to Illinois was solid rushing game led by TB Joe Igber, who rushed 21 times for 116 yards (5.5 yards per carry) and both of Cal's TDs. 'He (Igber) has the energy and excitement to really energize our team,' says coach Tom Holmoe. 'There's no reason he cannot continue to perform on this high level.' . . . Cal actually outgained Illinois in opener, 381-373, but were done in by five turnovers. . . . Opponent this week, BYU, has the early national lead in scoring offense (61.0 points per game) and total offense (666.0 yards per game).

OREGON: Coach Mike Bellotti picked up his 50th win as Duck head coach in UO's win against Wisconsin. . . . Bellotti has been selected as head coach for the West for the 2002 East-West Shrine Game. . . . Oregon extended its home winning streak to 21 games with win against Wisconsin. That is the second-longest home winning streak in Conference history, trailing only California's 26 straight from 1919-23. It also is the second-longest current home winning streak in the nation behind 35 by Florida State. Included in the Ducks' streak are 13 straight Conference game home wins, a Pac-10 record. . . . QB Joey Harrington is 15-2 as a starter. . . . Harrington on the excitement generated in the state of Oregon over the UO and OSU football teams: 'Everywhere you go, you see a Duck or a Beaver.' . . . Add Harrington on the Duck offense that returns eight starters from a unit that averaged 409.8 yards and 29.3 points last year: 'We've got the skill, we've got the line, we've got the scheme. We don't need to change anything.' . . . UO CB Rashad Bauman on the Ducks' lofty rankings in the pre-season publications: 'I stay away from the magazines. Those books will mess you up.'

OREGON STATE: OSU loss at Fresno snapped a 13-game non-conference regular season winning streak going. The Beavers had not lost a regular season non-conference game since 1996. . . . OSU led the league in interceptions last year (22) and had the fewest interceptions thrown (7), a big reason Beavs topped the Pac-10 in turnover margin at +16. . . . Oregon State has set an all-time record with 23,000 season tickets.

OREGON STATE TB KEN SIMONTON ON THE PAC-10 CAREER CHARTS

Career Rushing
1. Charles White, USC, 1976-79 - 6,245
2. Marcus Allen, USC, 1978-81 - 4,810
3. Darrin Nelson, Stanford, 1977-81 - 4,169
4. Ken Simonton, Oregon State, 1998-pr - 4,115

Career Scoring
4. Max Zendejas, Arizona, 1982-85 - 360
5. Skip Hicks, UCLA, 1993-97 - 330
6. Charles White, USC, 1976-79 - 320
7. Ken Simonton, Oregon State, 1998-pr - 318

STANFORD: Stanford was 5-3 and averaged 29.8 points per game with Randy Fasani at QB last year and was 0-3 with 7.6 points per game when he missed games with injuries. Fasani is among the nine starters Stanford returns on offense. However, the Stanford staff is still seeking a 'big play' threat to add some explosiveness to the offense. . . . Stanford returns six of its top seven offensive linemen from a year ago, including all five starters. One of them, senior OG Eric Heitmann, notes: 'As an offensive unit, I've never seen a more confident group of guys.' . . . On defense, the Cardinal have seven starters back, but face the task of replacing team leaders DT Willie Howard and OLB Riall Johnson. . . . Among the many reasons Stanford fans like coach Tyrone Willingham is the fact that he has knocked off California in the Big Game in all six of his seasons as head coach.

UCLA: With season-opening road win at No. 25 Alabama, UCLA has won its last four season-openers. Bruins also have won 11 of last 15 games vs. ranked opponents, including five of the last seven. . . . Talk about mistake-free football. At Alabama, UCLA had no turnovers and had zero penalties for zero yards. The no penalties for no yards, of course, ties the Pac-10 record for fewest penalties and fewest penalty yards held by several teams. The last Pac-10 team to go clean on penalties in a game was Washington State vs. USC in 1994.

USC: QB Carson Palmer has moved into third place on SC career completion list behind Rob Johnson and Rodney Peete. Palmer completed his first nine passes in going 21 of 28 overall in Trojans' opening win against San Jose State. . . . OLB Chris Prosser is allergic to grass and develops a rash on his hands and arms from it. 'I guess it's (football) not the best sport for having this problem,' Prosser understates. . . . Sports Illustrated says USC has the nation's toughest schedule. . . . Coach Pete Carroll's daughter, Jamie, is a sophomore on USC's No. 2-ranked women's volleyball team which reached the NCAA Final Four last year.

WASHINGTON: The Huskies enter the season with the longest overall winning streak and longest Conference-game winning streak among Pac-10 teams. UW has won its last eight straight overall and seven straight in Conference play. . . . Husky tailbacks last year averaged 5.8 yards per rush and scored 18 touchdowns. . . . Last season, Washington won seven games by less than a touchdown. Huskies also won seven games in which they trailed in the fourth quarter. . . . Huskies are inexperienced on the offensive line. Only C Kyle Benn, who has started 22 straight games, has any starting experience. . . . Washington has moved Paul Arnold from running back to wide receiver, where he looks like a potential star. He caught five passes for 108 yards and a TD in the Husky Spring Game.

WASHINGTON STATE: The Cougars are well-stocked at QB with junior starter Jason Gesser and soph Matt Kegel, who knocked off USC last year when Gesser was injured. While Gesser is No. 1, Kegel is likely to see action every week. . . . In season-opening 36-7 win against Idaho, WSU defense limited Vandals to eight first downs and 146 yards total offense--74 rushing, 72 passing. . . . SB Nakoa McElrath posted career highs with 10 receptions for 141 yards vs. Idaho. Included were two touchdown receptions.

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