Key games to impact division races in Pac-12 football
AROUND THE PAC-12
GAME THEMES: UTAH travels to Los Angeles where it last defeated USC in 1916. The Utes will face a Trojan defense that allows just 110.3 rushing yards per game and is 16th nationally in total defense (333.9 yards per game). . . Within a stretch of 45 miles in Oregon, two games with major implications on the Pac-12 North Division race will feature Heisman hopefuls and explosive offenses. No. 12 UCLA visits No. 2 OREGON where the Bruins’ Brett Hundley (324.7 yards total offense/game) looks to rebound following UCLA’s first defeat of the season. Oregon QB Marcus Mariota (363.4 yards total offense/game) continues to have the Ducks moving on all cylinders as they are now averaging 643.1 yards in total offense (2nd in the FBS) and 57.6 points per game (2nd in the FBS). . . Meanwhile, in Corvallis, OREGON STATE and the nation’s leading passer in Sean Mannion (427.4 yards per game) will get tested by No. 8 STANFORD whose defense ranks fourth in the Pac-12 in total defense (363.4 ypg) and are posting 2.71 sacks per game. . . ARIZONA looks to pick up its second league victory when it travels to COLORADO. Wildcat RB Ka’Deem Carey leads the FBS in rushing (161.0 yards per game) and is coming off a season-best 236 yards in Arizona’s win over Utah. Colorado, coming off its win over Charleston Southern, is looking to get over .500 this late in the season for the first time since 2008. . . CALIFORNIA and WASHINGTON meet in Seattle with both teams looking to snap a couple of streaks of their own. The Bears have dropped four straight (and nine straight conference games), while the Huskies have dropped three straight. Cal’s pass offense (359.9 ypg) will test the Washington’s Pac-12-leading pass defense (194.9 ypg).
THE RECORD BOOK: WASHINGTON STATE junior QB Connor Halliday set multiple Pac-12 records in WSU’s 62-38 loss at Oregon.
THE RECORD BOOK, PART II:With his 481 passing yards at California, OREGON STATE junior QB Sean Mannion set a Pac-12 consecutive-game passing record with 974 yards (school record 493 yards vs. Washington State in his previous game).
LAST MEETING: In his first collegiate start, Kevin Hogan completed 22-of-29 passes for 254 yards and 3 TDs as No. 16 Stanford rallied past No. 13 Oregon State, 27-23. Stepfan Taylor added 116 yards on the ground.