Week 8 TV schedule released
Thursday, Oct. 18
Oregon at Arizona State (6:00 p.m. Pacific, ESPN) - The Ducks and Sun Devils played an entertaining game last year that saw Sparky take a third-quarter lead before Oregon stormed back to win, 41-27, in Eugene. This year, the battle moves to Tempe, and Arizona State fans will attempt to black out The Duck for this Thursday night tussle. History could be made in 10 days: If the Ducks win, they will have the all-time series lead against Arizona State for the first time ever since the two teams began playing in 1966 and on a regular basis since 1980. Oregon has won the last seven against the Sun Devils to tie up the all-time series at 16 (Arizona State won the first nine). One final note - Arizona State has a chance to make this a top-25 match-up if it can beat Colorado on the road and get a little help from some other teams losing.
Saturday, Oct. 20
Stanford at Cal (12 noon Pacific, FOX) - What? The Big Game is in October this year? Yep, it’s the earliest the Big Game has been played on the calendar since the Bay Area rivals met for the first time ever in March of 1892. Stanford leads the all-time series 57-46-11 and has won the last two. Of course, Cal fans don’t want to be reminded what happened the last time the Big Game was in Berkeley… Both teams will be returning to the Bay after a weekend away (Stanford is at Notre Dame on Saturday, while Cal is at Washington State).
Colorado at USC (3:00 p.m. Pacific, Pac-12 Networks) - And thus begins a brutal stretch for Colorado. Not that facing Arizona State is an easy undertaking, but Colorado must travel to Los Angeles and Eugene before returning home to get a breather against No. 17 Stanford. That’s not too much to ask of a super-young team, now is it? Matt Barkley broke a school record by throwing six touchdown passes against the Buffs last year, a feat he has already repeated this year against Syracuse.
Washington at Arizona (7:00 p.m. Pacific, Pac-12 Networks) - Just because the Wildcats have lost three straight doesn’t make this tough scheduling stretch any easier for Washington. Arizona will be rearing to go coming off a bye week removed from a heart-wrenching overtime loss to the Cardinal. Washington must first deal with USC at home before it can worry about RichRod’s vaunted spread. The home team has won the last four in this series, this after the road team winning the previous four from 2004-2007. Time for a switch again? The Huskies sure hope so.
Utah at Oregon State (7:30 p.m. Pacific, ESPN or ESPN2) - The Utes made history last year when they beat the Beavers, 27-8, to claim their first-ever Pac-12 victory. The game served as a springboard for Utah, which went on the win its next three conference clashes to put itself in a position to win the Pac-12 South’s spot in the Pac-12 title game (it didn’t happen; thanks, Buffs). Oregon State hosts Utah for the first time since 2007, which is also the last time the Beavers beat the Utes. If Oregon State beats BYU the week before, a win against Kyle Whittingham’s team would make the Beavers bowl-eligible for the first time since 2009.