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Kurt Kragthorpe and Kyle Goon
Kurt Kragthorpe and Kyle Goon cover the Pac-12 for The Salt Lake Tribune.

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Picking the Pac-12: Road teams will struggle

Last week's picks: 7-5

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Ouch. Nothing convinces you of the quality of a conference when you get burned badly by picking against it. I learned my lesson. I hope.


Washington State at UNLV, 7 p.m., ESPN

The Cougars should be able to take care of business against the Rebels, who lost to FCS Northern Arizona last week. This could be a good opportunity for Washington State to finally open things up on offense, but the likely absence of Jeff Tuel could hinder that. It's a good opportunity to get a look at the QB of the future, Connor Halliday, though. The pick: Washington State 21, UNLV 7


California at No. 12 Ohio State, 10 a.m., ABC

This one could get ugly. Ohio State is shaking off an uneven win against Central Florida, and the Bears haven't put together a good performance in the first two weeks. The Pac-12 had a good week against the Big Ten last week. This is the revenge of the Big Ten. The pick: Ohio State 41, Cal 17

No. 4 Oregon vs. Tennessee Tech, 1 p.m., Pac-12 Networks

There is no reason the Ducks should be playing an FCS school in Week 3. But here they are. So, uh, who cares? After losing a couple of four-year starters last week Oregon will have a chance to see who might step up. The pick: Oregon 66, Tennessee Tech 14

Washington vs. Portland State, 2 p.m., FX

Another FCS game. The Huskies get the chance to feel what it's like to be on the other end of their abysmal showing last week against LSU. But Portland State can hang some points, and the Huskies should be wary. The pick: Washington 35, Portland State 21

Arizona State at Missouri, 5 p.m., ESPN2

In Tempe last year, this was one of the season's best games, with the Sun Devils winning 37-30 in overtime. The Tigers looked good in a loss to Georgia, and it's tough to see them losing at home in this, the inaugural SEC season. But it would be a landmark victory for Todd Graham and Arizona State, which has scored 108 points in the first two weeks. The pick: Missouri 45, Arizona State 35

No. 21 Stanford vs. No. 2 USC, 5:30 p.m., FOX

The Cardinal seem to be getting some push based on past performances. Here's a thought: Andrew Luck plays for the Indianapolis Colts now. USC wasn't as dominating as it should have been against Syracuse, but there are a lot of ways to explain that. They'll roll in Palo Alto. The pick: USC 27, Stanford 14

Colorado at Fresno State, 6 p.m. CBSSPorts Network

The Buffaloes are in desperate need of a win after losing to CSU and Sacramento State. Fresno State has been uninspiring, but is still favored by two touchdowns. Jon Embree is only in his second season but is already considered to be on the hot seat. We'll give the Buffs the benefit of the doubt. The pick: Colorado 21, Fresno State 20

Utah vs. No. 25 BYU, 8 p.m., ESPN2

Looking ahead at Utah's schedule, it's hard to find many sure wins. The Utes could really use a win here to regain some momentum going into next week's Pac-12 opener. While BYU has been impressive in its first two weeks, the Cougars have also been untested. If Utah's replacement quarterback, either Jon Hays or Travis Wilson, can protect the ball, the Utes will pull the upset. The pick: Utah 28, BYU 24

Arizona vs. South Carolina State, 8:30 p.m.

The only thing the Wildcats have to worry about here is not losing any momentum from last week's big win against Oklahoma State. The upcoming schedule: at Oregon, vs. Oregon State, at Stanford, vs. Washington, vs. USC. The pick: Arizona 49, SCSU 3

No. 22 UCLA vs. Houston, 8:30 p.m.

A fascinating game in that the teams combined for 72 points last year in a Cougars win. But the Bruins are significantly improved, while Houston has stumbled out of the games. But Houston scored 49 points last week against Louisiana Tech, so it may still light up the scoreboard. The Pick: UCLA 42, Houston 21

PAC-12 Links
Links from around the Pac-12
Arizona (Tucson Citizen)
» UA football: Your stories from the 'Hill Mary'
» Hansen's Sunday Notebook: Caldwell's pin count goes into record books
» UA football: Inside the numbers of UA's win
» UA football: My AP Top 25 ballot

Arizona St. (Arizona Republic)
» ASU's rivalry with UCLA takes center stage
» ASU football practice report from Sunday
» College insider: ASU volleyball set for UA
» Jordan Simone goes from walk-on to playmaker

California (East Bay Tribune)
» Jeff Kent provides endowed women's scholarship to Cal athletics
» Cal athletics store celebrates football victory prematurely
» Cal coach Sonny Dykes to players: 'Hang in there'
» Cal Bears' big night in Arizona ends in nightmare finish

Colorado (Denver Post)
» Speedy freshman Donovan Lee gives CU Buffs another playmaker
» Colorado coached to avoid coin-toss glitches, MacIntyre says
» Colorado's MacIntyre gratified Buffs practiced hard Monday
» CU Buffs tackle Jeromy Irwin might play vs. Hawaii after concussion

Oregon (The Oregonian)
» Oregon Ducks open up Autzen Stadium doors for Fan Fest: Photo gallery
» Heisman Watch 2014: Alabama's Amari Cooper, Mississippi State's Dak Prescott join the party
» Oregon Ducks still No. 1, Utah and Oregon State rise in Week 4 Pac-12 Power Rankings
» How I voted in the The Oregonian's Pac-12 power ratings poll ... and why

Oregon State (Corvallis Gazette-Times)
» Oregon State roundup (Sept. 19)
» OSU men's basketball: Tinkle says positive steps being made
» Spencer to become new AD at Evansville
» BeaversSalute program gives tickets to military personnel and veterans

Stanford (San Jose Mercury-News)
» Local sports digest: Stanford, Cal in water polo showdown
» Stanford coach David Shaw goes digging
» Cal, Stanford Pac-12 men's basketball schedules announced
» Local sports digest: Stanford's Maverick McNealy ties for medalist honors

UCLA (Los Angeles Daily News)
» UCLA Football Notebook: Running back Malcolm Jones loses appeal for extra season
» COLLEGE FOOTBALL: Improving UCLA has questions to answer during preseason football camp
» COLLEGE FOOTBALL: UCLA's prized recruit Eddie Vanderdoes cleared to play by NCAA after leaving Notre Dame
» Pac-12 Media Day: Eyes on Anthony Barr for UCLA's 2013 hopes

USC (Los Angeles Daily News)
» USC Football Notebook: Marqise Lee's injury not too serious
» USC Football Notebook: QBs Max Wittek, Cody Kessler present dilemma for Trojans coach Lane Kiffin
» USC FOOTBALL NOTEBOOK: Former UCLA coach Rick Neuheisel thinks Trojans might not miss QB Matt Barkley
» USC FOOTBALL NOTEBOOK: Dion Bailey says it's 'now or never'

Washington (Seattle Times)
» Huskies morning links: Kasen Williams on Stanford: 'It's going to be a showdown'
» Huskies get commitment from linebacker DJ Beavers
» Throw the ball more, says Huskies receiver Kasen Williams
» Huskies vs. Stanford, by the numbers: UW's Danny Shelton, Hau'oli Kikaha lead nation in sacks

Washington State (Spokane Spokesman-Review)
» Grading the Oregon game
» Wilson's ability can stand on its own
» Utah week
» A little night practice

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