PAC 10 Getting Respect in Polls
PAC 10 Getting Respect in Polls
By Wayne Allyn Root
Few expected Southern Cal to be ranked as low as #13 heading into Thursday's nationally televised game at Utah back when the season started. USC was tabbed by many as the #1 team in the country. During the summer, this trip to Utah was recognized as a possible danger spot on the road to a BCS Championship game invitation.
Now, thanks to a loss to Stanford, and relatively poor showings vs. expectations against Hawaii and Syracuse, Southern Cal is down at #13 in the polls. Nobody's thinking about a BCS Championship for them. Nobody's picking them to beat Oregon for the Pac 12 crown (though USC may be smaller dogs vs. the Ducks this year than they were when they knocked them off last year). Utah has become a "save the season" game rather than a possible pitfall for the Trojans.
Personally, I think too many people have given up on USC too soon. And, I think the pollsters are chasing their tails trying to respond to all the recent Pac 12 upsets. Stanford beats USC, so the Cardinal belong in the Top Ten regardless of other poor showings. Washington knocks off Stanford, so now the Huskies belong in the Top 20 even though they were routed by LSU and didn't impress otherwise. UCLA looked great vs. Nebraska...so let's rank them. Oops, Oregon State beats UCLA...so we've got to find a spot for the Beavers.
Here are the current AP rankings of Pac 12 teams heading into this weekend...
#14 Oregon State
#35 Arizona State (in the "also getting votes" extension)
#36 Arizona (same here)
That's fully SIX teams in the Top 25, with two more knocking at the door to get in. This for a conference that had so many embarrassing early results that some pundits were saying it was going to be a "down year" for the league!
Well, I'll tell you what. I follow the Pac 12 closer than anyone because there are historically big edges vs. the Vegas numbers in Western football. Even though the lines are posted in Vegas...those lines are greatly affected by media coverage. The media is better at covering the East than the West. And, I think that's the case here. Yes, the Pac 12 is moving in the right direction. And, yes, the best in the Pac 12 can play with anybody. That being said:
Southern Cal has the raw talent of a Top Five team, and should be given that respect until it's clear that something's wrong chemistry-wise with this group.
Oregon State isn't really a Top 15 team. This will become clear at some point in the immediate future when it's their turn to suffer an upset in league play. I'm happy to see good things happening for the program, but you can't take a Top 15 ranking seriously right now for this collection of talent.
Stanford probably isn't a Top 20 team either. They can steamroll opponents who are weak against the run, or they can wear down teams who lack depth (which happened in the fourth quarter of the USC game). The dropoff at quarterback has been too great for the Cardinal to stay in the elite class. Their passing stats make that very clear.
Washington may not be a Top 40 team let alone Top 25! They were a bit fortunate to get by Stanford last week. Their huge loss to LSU looks even worse now that the Tigers struggled with Auburn (a monster winner for my clients) and even looked bad vs. Towson last week.
UCLA is going to be an interesting team to handicap this year because they'll play like Top Ten in some weeks when things are clicking, but will be shaky in others because of turnovers. We've seen that play out already, and league action is just beginning.
I'm expecting the topsy turvy results to continue in the Pac 12 all season long. The ups and downs are just beginning! And, nobody navigates the rapids of a "Doesn't Make Sense" season better than WAYNE ALLYN ROOT! I'm the KING OF UPSETS because I know how to read the highs and lows for every team. You've seen that already with outright upset calls and near misses. You'll see it again this week in both college and pro action.
The fun starts Thursday Night when you get my best from:
USC at Utah
East Carolina at Central Florida
Arkansas State at Florida International
Arizona Cardinals at St. Louis Rams
One of those games will feature a major release, and it just might be in that Pac 12 matchup!
Friday will bring us a combination of my Western expertise in Utah State/BYU, and my New York roots in Pittsburgh/Syracuse. My best play there will continue our profit pyramid. Then, the sky's the limit Saturday and Sunday when the expanded schedule allows us to really step out.
You can purchase my top plays every game day right here at this website. Or, sign up for your favorite club by calling my handicapping office at 1-877-766-8946. Don't forget that the baseball playoffs are now just hours away. We had a great summer and I'm very much locked in to the remaining teams and their best pitchers. I've won 10 of the last 11 and am 18-5 for 78.3% in September! Check on baseball options here online or when you call the office.
Only one man in the handicapping industry has a star on the Vegas "Walk of Fame." And, that's because I know how to find WINNERS in every sport when YOU NEED THEM! I'm better than the pundits. I'm better than the pollsters. And, I've set the standard in an industry with more documented upset calls than any other handicapper. With so much at stake right now, it's time for YOU to go to W.A.R. alongside WAYNE ALLYN ROOT!
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