Stanford has made it through the first five weeks of the season and into the bye week. For those of you who are curious how to survive a bye week, I suggest you check out my article from last year. Then I suggest you re-watch the Arizona game from last weekend, because that was a thing of beauty reminiscent of the Luck era. You know, the teams that just thwacked nearly everyone by 30 points.
Although the 2015 squad didn’t get off to such a rosy start, they have redeemed themselves in the hearts and minds of voters and fans. After dropping from the rankings after their loss to Northwestern, they were right back in Week 3 after upsetting USC. Despite Kevin Hogan’s injury, the offense has been on a roll the past three games, scoring more in each successive week. In retrospect, the loss to Northwestern doesn’t look nearly as bad, as the Wildcats are undefeated and ranked at 13th in the AP poll. The loss is not the catastrophe that I predicted it to be back in early September.
There are lots of things to look forward to as we move towards the second half of the season. There’s a Thursday night game against UCLA after the bye, followed by a couple of matchups with the Washington schools, Colorado, and then Oregon. Perhaps the most intriguing game will be played on The Farm on November 21, the Big Game against Cal, which may mean more than it has in years. The regular season finale promises to be a highly emotional (and probably controversial) game against Notre Dame. At this point, a PAC-12 championship game isn’t all that lofty, and Stanford is two wins away from bowl eligibility with seven to play.
In the absence of Stanford football, there are a couple of interesting games in the PAC-12 this week:
Washington just took out USC in the Coliseum. This is the first time that these teams have met since Steve Sarkisian left the Huskies for the Trojans. Between his inappropriate behavior at the Salute to Troy event, tonight’s coaching gaffes, and being 1-2 in conference play, Sark might be quickly wearing out his welcome in Southern Cal.
The most interesting game this week is Cal at Utah. Salt Lake City + The MUSS + gun slinging Jared Goff + College GameDay = pure entertainment. Having watched Utah beat Stanford two years in a row, my money is on the Utes to hand Cal their first loss.
I’ll be back next week after the bye. Enjoy another great weekend in college football