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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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Pac-12 picks: UCLA over Stanford, Notre Dame over USC

Stanford's loss to Utah last week somewhat diminished the Pac-12's best matchup of Saturday's schedule, but it's still intriguing. And thanks to Colorado's rescheduling efforts, all 12 teams are in action. On to the picks:

Charleston Southern at Colorado, noon MDT, Pac-12 Networks

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After the Buffaloes' game with Fresno State was postponed in September due to the flooding in Boulder, Colorado needed a 12th game. Charleston Southern was able to fill the Buffs' open date. Because this is their second FCS opponent, the Buffs will need an NCAA waiver to count it as a sixth win for bowl eligibility. Let's just say that won't become an issue. Just beating the Buccaneers (7-0) will be tough enough for CU. Colorado 34, Charleston Southern 24.

UCLA at Stanford, 1:30 p.m. MDT, ABC

This is a rematch of a highly competitive Pac-12 championship game last December, with Stanford taking a 27-24 victory. The Cardinal have been vulnerable defensively the last two weeks against Washington and Utah, and the Bruins will present another big challenge. Stanford's offense should have some success as well, although it produced only two touchdowns against Utah. UCLA 34, Stanford 31.

Washington at Arizona State, 4 p.m. MDT, Pac-12 Networks

This is what I love about October and November in the Pac-12: There are so many matchups that appear even. Based on the way these teams played at Stanford, Washington would seem to have the edge here. But ASU is a different team at home. This should be a wild adventure, with lots of yards and points. Could the Huskies really lose three games in a row? Arizona State 38, Washington 35.

USC at Notre Dame, 5:30 p.m. MDT, NBC

USC remains the Pac-12's biggest mystery. Was last week's performance against Arizona merely a case of a one-time jolt from interim coach Ed Orgeron? Or have the Trojans truly found themselves? This is an intriguing game for Utah and BYU fans, considering the Utes visit USC next week and BYU visits Notre Dame next month. The Trojans have won five straight games in South Bend, a remarkable streak. Based on Notre Dame's victory over ASU, I'm taking the Irish. Notre Dame 27, USC 24.

Utah at Arizona, 8 p.m. MDT, Pac-12 Networks

Until last week, Washington was the most recent Pac-12 team to beat Stanford. How did the Huskies follow up that victory last season? By losing to Oregon, USC and Arizona in succession. So as much as the Utes would like to sustain their momentum, it won't be easy. Arizona is happy to be home after a road-heavy first half of the season. The Utes won in Tucson in 2011, but that was against a Wildcat team with an interim coach. The biggest variable in this game is Arizona quarterback B.J. Denker, who's not considered a great passer, even though he threw for 363 yards against USC. The pressure is on the Ute offense to score 35 points, after being held to 24 by a poor Arizona defense last November. Utah 35, Arizona 28.

Washington State at Oregon, 8 p.m. MDT, Fox Sports 1

Oregon is easy to take for granted, racking up huge numbers very week. This game will be no exception, and then the Ducks should get a better test next week against UCLA. The Cougars crumbled in the fourth quarter of a 52-24 loss to Oregon State last week and need to avoid turnovers to stay remotely close to the Ducks. Oregon 52, Washington State 28.

Oregon State at California, 8:30 p.m. MDT, ESPN2

It's amazing to think the Beavers will be bowl-eligible by Oct. 19, after they lost to Eastern Washington in a season opener. But in its weakened state, Cal's defense can't stop Sean Mannion and the OSU offense. Oregon State 45, California 24.

&n

PAC-12 Links
Links from around the Pac-12
Arizona (Tucson Citizen)
» Hansen's Sunday Notebook: Tucson's streetcar leads to soccer
» UA football: 3-star lineman commits to Cats
» Hansen's Sunday Notebook: Tucson's streetcar leads to soccer
» Future Cat Roth sets HS steeplechase record

Arizona St. (Arizona Republic)
» Reunited, and it feels so good ... sometimes
» ASU receiver Strong back stronger
» Graham's coaching jobs have shaped him
» ASU All Access: Who stood out at workouts

California (East Bay Tribune)
» Local digest: Former Stanford star Kerri Walsh Jennings wins World Series of Beach Volleyball
» Internazionale Milan scores 3-2 shootout victory over Real Madrid
» Kerri Walsh Jennings reaches final of World Series of Beach Volleyball
» Former Cal athletic director Sandy Barbour hired as Penn State AD

Colorado (Denver Post)
» Changes in college football a cause of excitement and concern
» Pac-12 media days: Colorado eager to turn things around
» Colorado's MacIntyre at Pac-12 media days: "We will be improved"
» Pac-12 commissioner Larry Scott: league "well positioned" for playoffs

Oregon (The Oregonian)
» 49ers RB LaMichael James suffers elbow injury; former Oregon Ducks star could miss 1 month
» Some thoughts about the Run TrackTown High Performance Meet; Oregon track & field rundown
» Gregg Popovich in Oregon wine country; late hits on Marcus Mariota; Kevin Love trade rumors: The Oregonian sports top 5
» Jordan McNamara makes a late kick count in the Run TrackTown High Performance Meet

Oregon State (Corvallis Gazette-Times)
» Oregon State hires longtime trainer hired Fred Tedeschi
» Beavers hire Mark Massari as deputy athletics director
» Oregon State hands out Bennys to top athletes, coaches and teams
» OSU fishing: MacDonald, Martinez win conference tournament

Stanford (San Jose Mercury-News)
» Local digest: Former Stanford star Kerri Walsh Jennings wins World Series of Beach Volleyball
» Kerri Walsh Jennings reaches final of World Series of Beach Volleyball
» Stanford's Carol Zhao advances in Bank of the West tennis qualifying
» Local digest: Atletico Madrid not at full strength against San Jose Earthquakes

UCLA (Los Angeles Daily News)
» UCLA Football Notebook: Running back Malcolm Jones loses appeal for extra season
» College Football: Position coach Adrian Klemm says UCLA offensive line a work in progress
» 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

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)
» Storm will sign Waltiea Rolle to second seven-day contract
» Chris Petersen eager to bring some trick-playin', Goliath-slayin' fun to the Huskies
» Former Lincoln High star Alex Montgomery helps New York win
» Morning links: Chris Petersen 'nailed it' in move to Washington

Washington State (Spokane Spokesman-Review)
» A couple weeks in, everyone will be really tired
» Shock win fifth in a row
» Shock close regular season at Portland
» Where will Lynch's holdout lead the Hawks?



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