Below are my predictions for the final week of Pac-10 regular season football.
Once we're through this weekend and "what we learned," I'll dial up some additional posts like comparing pre-season predictions with what actually happened, bowl predictions and some questions to ask before the Ducks play in whichever bowl they end up in - either the Rose Bowl or the National Championship Game.
Oregon will defeat Oregon State by the score of 45-21 in the Civil War game in Corvallis. The Ducks have too much on both sides of the ball and on special teams for them to lose this game. Baring an injury to QB Thomas or an orgy of turnovers by Oregon, I don't see this one as in doubt for the Ducks. By no means, however, do I think OSU will give anything other than their very best effort. They WILL be ready to play and play well...at least for a while. If all the other games are a guide, this one will start out with the Beavers getting it done and perhaps even in the lead at half by a few points...but in the second half the Ducks will take over and cruise to a win as the Beavers fatigue and the Ducks superior talent prevails. I think there is also the possibility that this one could be a blowout by the Ducks from pretty much the beginning, but I won't predict that. Just an Oregon win.
Washington will defeat WSU by the score of 24-14 in the Apple Cup in Pullman. Neither team is a scoring machine. Neither team has a particularly good defense. Could be one of those games where no offense happens or neither team can stop the other. I think the UW will prevail with their senior QB, slightly better defense and motivation to make a bowl at 6-6. The Cougs will be up for it, however, and this one may come down to who wants it more and who gets a lucky break or two.
Arizona will defeat Arizona State by the score of 38-21 in Tempe on Thursday. Arizona is a better team. They will win. Simple as that.
USC will defeat UCLA by the score of 21-10 at the Rose Bowl stadium in Los Angeles. While the Trojans are not having a great season and could not go to a bowl even if they were given sanctions against them, I think they have more talent across the board than UCLA does and I think that will show in this game. On top of that, UCLA is a team in shambles. They are not going to a bowl no matter what happens, so they'll just play this out and get into the off season...with a loss.
Cal and Stanford have completed their seasons.