2010 Midseason All Pac-12 Team

18 10 2010

Time for our first annual Mid-Season team and you can already see some shakeups from our preseason team, most notably Jake Locker getting cut from the team. Locker’s numbers would probably look better if Jermaine Kearse didn’t lead the Pac in drops with 9, but you take the good with the bad and he’s been productive when he holds onto the ball. The tight ends in the conference haven’t been used as much as they have in the past, but Coby Feleener of Stanford has been consistent catching the ball and solid in run blocking.

1st Team

Offense

QB Andrew Luck Stanford
RB LaMichael James Oregon
RB Shane Vereen Cal
WR Juron Criner Arizona
WR Jermaine Kearse Washington
TE Coby Fleener Stanford
OL Bo Thran Oregon
OL Adam Grant Arizona
OL David DeCastro Stanford
OL Butch Lewis USC
OL Ryan Taylor UCLA

Perhaps the biggest surprise on the first team defense is the freshman Justin Washington making the team. He benefits from playing alongside two of the best defensive ends with Brooks Reed and Ricky Elmore, but he’s taken advantage of his opportunities. Mason Foster will lead the conference in tackles this year, because the Husky defense will struggle to get off the field, but Akeem Ayers plays a bigger role in the success of UCLA. Sophomore Cliff Harris of the Oregon Ducks leads the conference with 4 interceptions and has a couple punt returns for touchdown this year so he makes the list as a corner back and punt returner.

Defense

DL Brooks Reed Arizona
DL Jurrell Casey USC
DL Justin Washington Arizona
DL Kenny Rowe Oregon
OLB Mason Foster Washington
MLB Vontaze Burfict Arizona St
OLB Akeem Ayers UCLA
CB Cliff Harris Oregon
CB James Dockery Oregon St
S Rahim Moore UCLA
S TJ McDonald USC
PR Cliff Harris Oregon
KR Travis Cobb Arizona

For the 2nd team, Matt Barkley got the nod over Nick Foles. Barkley has been impressive in his last few games and absolutely torched a solid Cal defense yesterday. Leaving JacQuizz Rodgers off the list might surprise some people, but he just hasn’t produced like the team needs him to. Part of the problem is the offensive line and combined with an inconsistent passing game, opposing defenses can stack the box. Robert Woods makes the list over his teammate Ronald Johnson and he’s quickly becoming one of the top wide receivers of the conference.

2nd Team

Offense

QB Matt Barkley USC
RB Johnathan Franklin UCLA
FB Stanley Havili USC
WR Jeff Maehl Oregon
WR Robert Woods USC
TE Joe Halahuni Oregon St
OL Zane Taylor Utah
OL Carson York Oregon
OL Chase Beeler Stanford
OL Mitchell Schwartz Cal
OL Colin Baxter Arizona

2nd Team Defense

DL Ricky Elmore Arizona
DL Brandon Bair Oregon
DL Travis Long WSU
MLB Shane Skov Stanford
MLB Mychal Kendricks Cal
MLB Casey Matthews Oregon
OLB Sean Westgate UCLA
CB Omar Bolden Arizona St
CB Darian Hagan Cal
S Delano Howell Stanford
S Lance Mitchell Oregon St
PR Ronald Johnson USC
KR Kyle Middlebrooks ASU

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NASPAQ : Pac-12 Stock Report – Week 6

12 10 2010

At the midway point of the season we can now see that 9 teams will be competitive in the conference this season. Although Washington State is making great strides, they’re still a year away from winning a couple games in conference play.

Quarterbacks

According to Chinese Zodiac week six is the week of the quarterback and based on the performances this week that holds true. Ryan Katz (KATZ) had his coming out party by torching the Arizona defense with the long-ball and an accurate, strong-armed, intermediate passing game. The Beaver quarterback finished the day with 22 completions on 31 passes for 393 yards, two touchdowns and an interception. We thought that Katz would struggle after James Rodgers (JROD) went out with an injury, but he didn’t miss a beat. Every year Oregon State gets blown off the line of the race to the championship, but Mike Riley is a long-strider that picks up his pace in conference play.

The top three quarterbacks of the NASPAQ all had big days. Nick Foles (FOLE) threw 35 of 46 for 440 yards with 3 touchdowns, one interception. In Palo Alto Stanford’s Andrew Luck (Luck) (20-24, 285 yards, 3TD’s) and USC’s Matt Barkley (BARK) (28-45, 390 yards, 3TD’s) saw two of the worst secondaries in the country and capitalized on their opportunities. This game felt like the last team with the ball would win the game, and for the second straight week USC went down to a game winning field goal. If you’re a fan of big time passing games, then the other Bay Area game between UCLA and Cal would have put you to sleep. Kevin Riley (RILE) just hasn’t made the improvements he needed to this season and Kevin Prince (PRNC) has a lot under achieving potential at wide receiver.

Team Symbol Δ Δ% Total
Andrew Luck Stanford LUCK ↑ 25 16% $175.00
Nick Foles Arizona FOLE ↑ 20 14% $160.00
Matt Barkley USC BARK ↑ 20 15% $150.00
Jake Locker UW LOCK ↑ 10 10% $110.00
Jordan Wynn Utah WYNN ↑ 10 15% $75.00
Kevin Riley Cal RILE ↓5 7% $65.00
Darron Thomas Oregon DARR ↑ 10 18% $65.00
Tyler Hansen Col HANS ↑ 5 11% $50.00
Ryan Katz UCLA PRNC ↑ 25 100% $50.00
Jeff Tuel WSU TUEL ↑ 5 14% $40.00
Steven Threet ASU THRE ↑ 15 300% $20.00
Kevin Prince OSU KATZ ↓10 40% $15.00

Running Backs

With all the great performances we saw at quarterback this week one would expect the running back numbers to drop, but the top three guys keep on going over the 100 yard mark. It should be noted that no roster has both a top three quarterback and running back on their roster. LaMichael James (LMJ) continues to set the pace each week and playing Washington State was another opportunity for him to climb on the Heisman ballots. James had 142 yards and 2 TD’s on 25 carries and added an 84 yard touchdown reception on a wheel roue where he blew right by the defending linebacker. Shane Vereen (VERE) had almost identical rushing numbers with 25 rushes for 151 yards and 2 TD’s against the Bruins. A surprisingly poor performance came from USC’s tandem of Allen Bradford (BRAD) and Marc Tyler (MARC). The duo combined for 16 carries and 44 yards. Kiffin has always favored the passing game, but their offensive line is stacked with five star offensive lineman and they’re not running the ball with consistent success.

Team Symbol Δ Δ% Total
JacQuizz Rodgers OSU JQR ↑ 5 4% $130.00
LaMichael James Oregon LMJ ↑ 10 6% $160.00
Shane Vereen Cal VERE ↑ 10 10% $105.00
Chris Polk UW POLK ↑ 5 5% $90.00
Johnathan Franklin UCLA FRNK ↓10 20% $40.00
Allen Bradford USC BRAD ↓5 11% $40.00
Stepfan Taylor Stanford STEP ↑ 5 20% $30.00
Deantre Lewis ASU DEAN ↓10 28% $25.00
Kenjon Barner Oregon BARN ↓10 40% $15.00
Nic Grigsby Arizona GRIG ↓5 40% $15.00
Marc Tyler USC MARC ↓10 40% $15.00
Derrick Coleman UCLA COLE ↓10 40% $15.00
Cameron Marshall ASU MRSH ↓10 50% $10.00

Wide Receivers

For the second straight week the highest wide receiver stock has moved around on the NASPAQ. Juron Criner (CRIN) took back his number one position with a 12 catch 179 yard, 1 TD performance and former #1 – Jermaine Kearse (JERM), has been battling drop like symptoms the past few weeks. True freshman Robert Woods (WOOD) had the best game of the year for Pac-12 receivers with his 12 reception 224 yard, 3 touchdown performance. Perhaps even more impressive than his numbers is that the majority of the youngster’s yards came against Stanford’s senior corner back- Richard Sherman. The Ducks Jeff Maehl (MAEL) also had a big game with ten receptions for 119 yards and a TD.

Team Symbol Δ Δ% Total
Juron Criner Arizona CRIN ↑ 15 21% $85.00
Ronald Johnson USC ROJO ↑ 5 7% $70.00
James Rodgers OSU JROD ↑ 5 7% $70.00
Jeff Maehl Oregon MAEL ↑ 15 27% $70.00
Jermaine Kearse UW JERM ↓10 13% $65.00
Robert Woods USC WOOD ↑ 30 100% $60.00
Marvin Jones Cal MARV ↑ 10 22% $55.00
Doug Baldwin Stanford BALD ↑ 20 80% $45.00
Devin Aguilar UW AGUI $25.00
D. Christopher Utah DEVO ↑ 10 66% $25.00
Jared Karstetter WSU KARS ↑ 5 25% $25.00
Keenan Allen Cal KEEN ↑ 5 33% $20.00
David Ausberry USC BERY ↓10 50% $10.00

Defensive Players Market

Our top defensive player, Akeem Ayers (AYER) finally saw his stock take a hit  with only three tackles in the loss at Cal, but the other two UCLA linebackers (Westgate & Larimore) combined for 21 tackles. The biggest defensive star in the game just happened to be on Cal’s roster as Darian Hagan (HAGN) had five tackles, two sacks, and an interception to be the conference’s defensive player of the week.  Delano Howell (HOWL) at Stanford was jarring the ball out of receivers hands and forced a fumble. While the USC defense looked terrible, at least their cheerleaders destroyed the Stanford cheerleaders. If Stanford has another game on TV this year I think their coeds might crack my television set.

Symbol Δ Δ% Total
Akeem Ayers UCLA AYER ↓5 4% $120
Rahim Moore UCLA MOOR ↑ 5 5% $105
Mason Foster UW FOST ↑ 10 10% $105
Jurrell Casey USC CASE ↑ 5 5% $100
Omar Bolden Arizona St BOLD ↑ 5 11% $100
Vontaze Burfict Arizona St BURF ↓5 5% $95
Casey Matthews Oregon MATT ↑ 10 11% $95
Kenny Rowe Oregon ROWE ↑ 5 $90
Stephen Paea Oregon St PAEA ↓5 5% $85
Mike Mohamed Cal MIKE ↑ 5 6% $85
Brooks Reed Arizona REED ↑ 5 6% $85
Mychal Kendricks Cal MYCH ↑ 5 6% $80
Delano Howell Stanford HOWL ↑ 15 23% $80
Trevin Wade Arizona WADE ↓5 6% $75
Tony Dye UCLA DYE ↑ 5 7% $75
Spencer Paysinger Oregon PAYS ↑ 5 7% $75
James Dockery Oregon St DOCK ↑ 5 7% $70
Darian Hagan Cal HAGN ↑ 20 40% $70
Cliff Harris Oregon CLIF ↑ 10 18% $65
Malcolm Smith USC SMIT ↓5 9% $50
Shane Skov Stanford SKOV ↑ 10 25% $50
TJ McDonald USC TJMC ↓5 10% $45
Owen Maracic Stanford OWEN ↑ 5 12% $45
Richard Sherman Stanford THOM ↓10 20% $40
DJ Holt Cal HOLT $25
Michael Thomas Stanford THOM ↑ 5 25% $25
Patrick Larimore UCLA LARI ↑ 5 25% $25

Defensive Units

You know how the saying goes when you face the pistol, “You shoot me once, shame on you, you shoot me twice…..” well the Bears weren’t fooled this time. After giving up nearly five hundred yards to Nevada they held UCLA to a paltry 144 total yards and only 26 yards on the ground. Mychal Kendricks was outstanding at linebacker for the Bears and he’s now tied for the most sacks in the conference with 4. In the USC vs Stanford game both teams looked like they were playing touch football in the secondary. The Trojans are athletic, but undisciplined and lack fundamentals in their tackling. As previously discussed about Stanford, they are slow and with the exception of Delano Howell, they’re poor tacklers. Arizona State had the best defensive performance going on the road and shutting down the Husky offense. Holding Jake Locker to just 14 points at home is impressive and Vontaze Burfict seems like he got the message of cutting back on his penalties, but that could be because he played less. And although she’s not in any UCLA apparel, we need more Rachel Lorraine.

Symbol Δ Δ% Total
Oregon Defense ORED ↓ 5 4% $120
Arizona Defense ARID ↓ 10 11% $75
Utah Defense UTAD ↑ 5 6% $85
ASU Defense ASUD ↑ 15 18% $95
Cal Defense CALD ↑ 20 30% $85
USC Defense USCD ↓ 5 8% $55
Stanford Defense STAD ↓ 5 8% $55
UCLA Defense UCLD ↓ 5 16% $50
OSU Defense OSUD ↑ 5 11% $50
Colorado Defense COLD ↓ 5 12% $35
UW Defense UWD ↓ 5 12% $35

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NASPAQ – Pac-12 Stock Report : Week 5

6 10 2010

I could have told you before the season that the top games in the country will be coming from the Pac-12 this year, but the entire nation got to see the national forecast on Saturday – Oregon Reign!

The Ducks have proven twice this year that sitting on a lead is a recipe for disaster against them. The Oregon Reign comes without warning, causes flash floods and can pour all game long. Andrew Luck had trouble seeing through the green haze and was struck by lightning trying to tackle Eddie Pleasant after he returned a fumble to the Stanford three yard line.

Even worse than the loss for Stanford is that Oregon exposed weaknesses throughout their team. Last year the Cardinal had a slow defense with a weak secondary and they did little to dispel those notions. Despite Stanford’s success in the red zone and Stepfan Taylor’s (STEP) 113 yards rushing, they didn’t have much success running the ball up the field. The key to beating the Ducks is a strong run defense and controlling the clock, and Stanford wasn’t able to do either. Despite all the points there were some great defensive performances during the game. Cliff Harris (CLIF) had two interceptions and his stock would have gone up even more if he didn’t fumble away a kickoff. Oregon’s defense continues to give up yards in bunches, but their defense matches the offense’s big play ability by forcing turnovers. James Dockery (DOCK) saw a 44% increase in his stock after getting two interceptions and the game clinching interception two out of the last three games.

Defensive Players Market

Symbol Δ Δ% Total
Akeem Ayers UCLA AYER ↑ 10 8% $125
Rahim Moore UCLA MOOR $100
Vontaze Burfict ASU BURF ↑ 5 5% $100
Mason Foster UW FOST ↑ 10 11% $95
Jurrell Casey USC CASE ↑ 5 5% $95
Omar Bolden ASU BOLD ↑ 5 5% $90
Stephen Paea OSU PAEA ↑ 10 12% $90
Casey Matthews Oregon MATT ↑ 5 6% $85
Mike Mohamed Cal MIKE $80
Trevin Wade Arizona WADE $80
Brooks Reed Arizona REED $80
Tony Dye UCLA DYE ↑ 5 7% $70
James Dockery OSU DOCK ↑ 20 44% $65
Malcolm Smith USC SMIT ↑ 5 10% $55
Cliff Harris Oregon CLIF ↑ 15 37% $55
Richard Sherman Stanford THOM ↓5 9% $50
TJ McDonald USC TJMC ↑ 5 11% $50
Owen Maracic Stanford OWEN ↑ 5 14% $40
Shane Skov Stanford SKOV ↑ 5 14% $40
DJ Holt Cal HOLT $25
Michael Thomas Stanford THOM $20
Patrick Larimore UCLA LARI ↓5 20% $20

Washington’s defense looked good coming off a bye week and forced Matt Barkley into some bad passes in critical situations down the stretch. With Arizona State coming to town they will have a chance to see their stock rise even more.

Defensive Unit Market

Symbol Δ Δ% Total
Oregon Defense ORED ↓ 5 3% $125
Arizona Defense ARID $85
Utah Defense UTAD $80
ASU Defense ASUD ↑ 5 8% $80
Cal Defense CALD $65
USC Defense USCD ↓ 10 14% $60
Stanford Defense STAD ↓ 10 14% $60
UCLA Defense UCLD ↓ 5 7% $60
OSU Defense OSUD ↑ 10 28% $45
Colorado Defense COLD ↑ 5 14% $40
UW Defense UWD ↑ 5 14% $40

Quarterback

The Stanford Cardinal finally ran out of Luck this weekend, but it wasn’t entirely the quarterback’s fault. His stock went up $5, because of his solid play in the first half, but Luck will need to prove that he can produce when the running game is not working. Jake Locker (LOCK) has finally played like the game breaker that he was touted as  in the off-season. Now that they have the road win off their backs they’re looking like a much more confident team. They have a tough game this weekend against Arizona State, but we’re bearish on (LOCK) for the next couple weeks.

Team Symbol Δ Δ% Total
Andrew Luck Stanford LUCK ↑ 5 3% $150.00
Nick Foles Arizona FOLE $140.00
Matt Barkley USC BARK ↑ 5 4% $130.00
Jake Locker UW LOCK ↑ 20 25% $100.00
Kevin Riley Cal RILE $70.00
Jordan Wynn Utah WYNN $65.00
Darron Thomas Oregon DARR ↑ 20 57% $55.00
Tyler Hansen Col HANS ↑ 5 12% $45.00
Ryan Katz UCLA PRNC ↑ 10 66% $25.00
Kevin Prince OSU KATZ $25.00
Steven Threet ASU THREE ↓5 33% $10

Wide Receiver

There was some movement at the top of the wide receiver list with Jermaine Kearse (JERM) overtaking Juron Criner in total value at $75. J-Kearse had six catches for 92 yards, but had a couple drops in the game.  His teammate Devin Aguilar (AGUI) hauled in 5 balls for 83 yards and a 46 yard touchdown pass.  Robert Woods (WOOD) didn’t record any catches but his 56 yard kickoff return prevented his stock from falling. Ronald Johnson (ROJO) continues to impress this season, but hasn’t been able to find the end zone at the same rate of his week one performance when he caught three touchdown passes.

Team Symbol Δ Δ% Total
Jermaine Kearse UW JERM ↑ 5 7% $75
Juron Criner Arizona CRIN $70
Ronald Johnson USC ROJO ↑ 5 8% $65
James Rodgers OSU JROD $55
Jeff Maehl Oregon MAEL ↑ 10 22% $55
Marvin Jones Cal MARV $45
Robert Woods USC WOOD $30
Doug Baldwin Stanford BALD $25
Devin Aguilar UW AGUI ↑ 10 66% $25
David Ausberry USC BERY ↑ 5 33% $20
Keenan Allen Cal KEEN $15
DeVonte Christopher Utah DEVO $15

Running Back

We had three performances this week with running backs going over 200 yards. LaMichael James (LMJ), Allen Bradford (BRAD), and Johnathan Franklin (FRNK) all eclipsed the number and scored touchdowns. Bradford saw the largest increase in stock by going up 80% in USC’s loss to Washington. If Lane Kiffin knew how to call a game he would have run Bradford more and taken him closer to the 300 yard mark.

Team Symbol Δ Δ% Total
JacQuizz Rodgers OSU JQR ↑ 10 8% $125
LaMichael James Oregon LMJ ↑ 20 15% $150
Shane Vereen Cal VERE $95
Chris Polk UW POLK ↑ 10 13% $85
Kenjon Barner Oregon BARN ↓10 28% $25
Johnathan Franklin UCLA FRNK ↑ 20 66% $50
Nic Grigsby Arizona GRIG $25
Allen Bradford USC BRAD ↑ 20 80% $45
Cameron Marshall ASU MRSH $20
Marc Tyler USC MARC ↑ 5 25% $25
Deantre Lewis ASU DEAN ↑ 5 16% $35
Stepfan Taylor Stanford STEP ↑ 10 66% $25

IPO’s

One player that’s made a huge impact for his team in the past few weeks has been Derrick Coleman (COLE) of UCLA. He had 185 yards and three touchdowns against Washington State and 94 yards and a touchdown in the upset over #7 Texas. He’ll face a salty defense against Cal this weekend where the Bruins haven’t won since the 90’s. Two wide receivers have caught our attention lately, the 6’5″ Jared Karstetter (KARS) of Washington State, and Kerry Taylor (KERY) of Arizona State. Karstetter uses his size well and lit up UCLA’s talented secondary. Taylor has great body control and concentration to haul in tough grabs. His over the shoulder catch against Oregon was a thing of beauty.

Team Symbol Δ Δ% Total
Derrick Coleman UCLA COLE $25
Jared Karstetter WSU KARS $20
Kerry Taylor ASU KERY $15

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Pac-10 Blue Chip Team Scores

11 08 2010

I had a lot of trouble with the formatting of this article, so I just had to put the information into excel and made some jpeg files out of the information which look blurry on the blog, but will be clear if you click on them. Mike Lombardi came up with this blue-chip formula to determine how much talent is on each team in the NFL, but I only follow former Pac-10 players and wanted to see how our conference would look applying the same scoring system. The outside linebackers account for 2.5 more points than the middle linebackers, which makes sense for the NFL where most teams are using a 3-4 defense, but the majority of teams in college are still using a four man front and the middle linebacker can impact the game more than an outside linebacker – think Casey Matthews of Oregon and Vontaze Burfict of ASU. I was also concerned that the red chip secondary players received the same 7.5 points as the blue chip players. There are many talented players in the NFL secondaries, but in college there aren’t that many cornerbacks and safeties that would make as big of an impact as many of the blue chip players at other positions.

Arizona has a total of 80 points with a good mix of offensive and defensive players, with points coming from both the skill positions and in the trenches. Arizona State only has 30 points with 22.5 of those coming from the defensive side of the ball, so don’t expect them to be lighting up the scoreboard any time soon. Cal surprised me with 82 points, but Tedford has recruited as well as any coach in the conference not named Pete Carroll.
Arizona Points Arizona St Points Cal Points
Nick Foles 12.5 Lawrence Guy 7.5 Mitchell Schwartz 10
Adam Grant 10 Vontaze Burfict 7.5 Cameron Jordan 10
Ricky Elmore 10 Omar Bolden 7.5 Anthony Miller 7.5
Juron Criner 7.5 Thomas Weber 7.5 Matt Summers-Gavin 7.5
Colin Baxter 7.5 Mike Mohamed 7.5
Trevin Wade 7.5 Bryan Anger 7.5
Robert Golden 7.5 Mychal Kendricks 7.5
James Brooks 7.5 Sean Cattouse 7.5
Nic Grigsby 5 Kevin Riley 7
Shane Vereen 5
Marvin Jones 5
Chris Guarnero 5
Derrick Hill 5
Oregon brings 82.5 points with strength in the trenches. I think Casey Matthews is more valuable to their defense than the 7.5 points he’s allotted, but Paysinger received a higher rating in the formula and evened out the same number of points I would have given them combined. Oregon State has a lot of skill players, but without much depth in the trenches their team only accounts for 55 points so this tells me that they should be relying on the big plays this season. Stanford brings almost all of their 67.5 points on the offensive side of the ball. Chris Owusu probably would have made the list as the next red-chip wide receiver, but he gets 7.5 points for his kick return abilities.

Oregon Points Oregon St Points Stanford Points
Bo Thran 10 JacQuizz Rodgers 7.5 Andrew Luck 12.5
Kenny Rowe 10 James Rodgers 7.5 David DeCastro 7.5
Spencer Paysinger 10 Joe Halahuni 7.5 Chris Owusu 7.5
LaMichael James 7.5 Stephen Paea 7.5 Chase Beeler 7.5
Carson York 7.5 Lance Mitchell 7.5 Delondo Howell 7.5
Casey Matthews 7.5 Justin Kahut 7.5 Ryan Whalen 5
John Boyett 7.5 Michael Philipp 5 Jonathan Martin 5
Talmadge Jackson 7.5 Alex Linnekohl 5 Owen Maracic 5
Jeff Maehl 5 Andrew Phillips 5
Mark Asper 5 Shane Skov 5
Brandon Bair 5

UCLA will be carried by their defense and special teams this year, but that’s two thirds of the game so maybe they’ll do better than the 8th place finish the media projected them for. Still, they are only bringing 45 points to the table and having a kicker be the most dangerous weapon on your offense is never a good sign. USC is stocked with talent throughout the roster so it’s no surprise that they are the Leader of the Pac with 84 points in the blue chip scoring. The Washington Huskies totaled 42.5 points and will be relying on a strong passing game to win some games for them, but there’s not much talent on the offensive or defensive lines.

UCLA Points USC Points Washington Points
Akeem Ayers 10 Tyron Smith 10 Jake Locker 12.5
Kai Forbath 7.5 Butch Lewis 7.5 Mason Foster 10
Rahim Moore 7.5 Kris O’Dowd 7.5 Desmond Trufant 7.5
Jeff Locke 7.5 Jurrell Casey 7.5 Jermaine Kearse 7.5
Sheldon Price 7.5 Shareece Wright 7.5 Chris Polk 5
Nelson Rosario 5 Malcolm Smith 7.5
Michael Morgan 7.5
Matt Barkley 7
Nick Perry 7
Ronald Johnson 5
Stanley Havili 5
Chris Galippo 5

Here’s all of the team points in alphabetical order and these are pretty consistent with my conference predictions which were posted a month ago.

Points
Arizona 80
ASU 30
Cal 82
Oregon 82.5
Oregon State 55
Stanford 67.5
UCLA 45
USC 84
Washington 42.5

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Pac-10 Conference Predictions

6 07 2010

After almost a week without a new post, I have finally completed the conference predictions. I didn’t include the newest members of the conference, and didn’t account for them in the rankings for each unit that you’ll see at the end of each team. I looked at every team’s schedule and posted which games that I predict them to lose. I ranked the offenses, defenses, and schedules of the teams to determine how they will finish the season. The schedule rankings were more heavily weighted towards conference schedules, but Oregon St took a big drop because their non-conference schedule includes two top five teams.

Offensive Rankings Defensive Rankings Schedule Ranking
  1. Washington
  2. Oregon
  3. Oregon St
  4. Cal
  5. Arizona
  6. USC
  7. Stanford
  8. UCLA
  9. Washington St
  10. Arizona St
  1. Oregon
  2. USC
  3. Oregon St
  4. Cal
  5. ASU
  6. UCLA
  7. Arizona
  8. Washington
  9. Stanford
  10. Washington St
  1. WSU
  2. USC
  3. Arizona
  4. Stanford
  5. UCLA
  6. Oregon
  7. Cal
  8. ASU
  9. Oregon St
  10. Washington

1. USC

The Trojans don’t have the explosive offense or dominant defense of their ’04 or ’05 teams, but they still have the deepest roster in the conference to go along with a favorable schedule. They get Oregon at home and they face Oregon St much later in the season (week 11) than the last two times they traveled to Corvallis. I’m projecting their game with the Beavers to be a loss, because the Trojans haven’t won there since 2004. The next most difficult match up will be against Arizona on the road. The Wildcats beat USC last year in LA, and the spread offense will give the Trojans young secondary a problem. Washington and Stanford could also pose a problem with strong QB play.

Projected Record- 11-2 (edited 7/15 to reflect a 13 game schedule)

Projected Losses- @ Arizona, @Oregon St

Tossup games- Stanford, Oregon, Washington

Offensive rank- #5, Defensive rank- #2, Schedule rank- #2, Total points- 9

2. Oregon

The loss of Jeremiah Masoli will really hurt this team offensively, which in turn will hurt them defensively. There were many times when Masoli extended plays with his legs and picked up first downs for Oregon, most notably in the Civil War on a 4th and 6 to keep the ball away from Oregon St and clinch the game. Masoli’s 668 yards rushing ranked second on the team and his threat of running the ball created opportunities in the spread-option offense for LaMichael James. Oregon will not have that luxury with Nate Costa, but he might be a better passer than Masoli who was average at best. If Oregon is going to compete for the Pac-12 championship this year it will need to have strong play from the QB position, because he’s not going to get much help from their average wide receiving corps and little depth. The running back depth will probably be better with blue-chip freshman Lache Seastrunk, but his running style is similar to LMJ.  Kenny Rowe led the conference in sacks last year and he has two solid linebackers behind him in Casey Matthews and Spencer Paysinger. This is a very aggressive defense and they miss a lot of tackles because of it, which led to their free safety John Boyett leading the team in tackles last year. The problem for Oregon is that they will be facing their top 3 opponents on the road this year in USC, OSU, and Cal where  Jeff Tedford has never lost to Oregon at home.

Projected Record- 9-3

Projected losses @Cal, @USC, @OSU

Tossup games: Arizona, Stanford

Offense Rank- #2, Defense Rank- #1, Schedule rank-#6, Total Points – 9

3. Arizona

Nick Foles and Juron Criner will form one of the top QB-WR tandems in the conference, but the Wildcats depth at WR took a hit when Deleshaun Dean violated the team’s gun policy and felt he needed to protect his pancakes at all costs. Arizona will face a tough test when Iowa travels to Tuscon in week three of the season. The strength of the Arizona defense will be at defensive end, but their lack of experience at defensive tackle and linebacker could create problems for the Arizona secondary.  Arizona was a descent road team last year beating OSU & USC, but they should have beaten Washington and were in a position to beat Cal if it weren’t for two once-in-a-lifetime plays (videos linked). I see them struggling against Stanford and Washington if they’re not able to pressure their QB’s. A lack of defensive experience is going to be the Achilles heel of this team in 2010.

Projected Record 8-4

Projected Losses Iowa, @Stanford, @Oregon, Washington

Tossup games USC, Cal, OSU

Offensive rank-#5,  Defensive rank- #7, Schedule rank-#3, Total points – 15

4. Cal

The Golden Bears were Pac-10 champions  in 2006, but this team has been an enigma ever since. Jeff Tedford was supposed to be one of the premier quarterback coaches in the nation, but four years into the Kevin Riley project has the guru still searching for answers. The Bears had significant turnover in their coaching staff this off-season losing their Defensive Coordinator Bob Gregory and letting go of Special Teams Coach Pete Alamar. Despite the lack of consistency at QB, and an offensive line that gave up 31 sacks a year ago, the Bears have some weapons at their disposal. Mike Mohamed led the conference in tackles last year, and Cameron Jordan is one of the top defensive lineman in the conference. Cal landed the top outside linebacker recruit of 2010 in Chris Martin and he’s expected to be the weapon off the edge that they’ve lacked since Zack Follett’s departure to the NFL. Shane Vareen quietly had a productive 950 yards and 12 TD’s a year ago, but look for his numbers to go up as he’s slated to be the starter all season.  Mel Kiper has ranked Anthony Milleras the number one tight end in the country among juniors and Marvin Jones was Kevin Riley’s favorite target a year ago at WR. The Bears get Oregon and Washington at home, but they have to travel to travel to USC, Arizona, and Oregon St.

Projected Record 9-3

Projected Losses @USC, @Arizona, @OSU

Tossup games: Oregon, Washington, Stanford

Offensive rank #4, Defensive rank #4, Schedule rank #7, Total points – 15

5. Oregon St

For six consecutive years the Beavers have lost at least 2 of their first four games and 2010 won’t be any different when they face Boise St and TCU in the first three weeks of the season. The Beavers have the top two play makers in the conference in the Rodgers brothers, but there will be a significant drop-off at QB after losing first team All-Pac 10 member Sean Canfield. I’m expecting Jacquizz to see more carries at running back, but teams will be looking to stack the line against the Beavers to beat them with the pass. Although this is a great year to be breaking in a new QB with lots of unsettled secondaries in the conference, Oregon St also had trouble protecting their QB last year giving up 29 sacks. They return four starters on the offensive line, but there’s a big difference in their run and pass blocking capabilities. Inexperienced quarterbacks are more prone to turning the ball over if they are uncomfortable in the pocket, and it could be a real problem for the Beavers. They face the top two opponents in the conference in Oregon and USC at home, and even with projections of beating both of them I still see this team struggling on the road to finish with three conference losses.

Projected Record: 7-5

Projected Losses: @TCU, @Boise St, @Arizona, @Washington @Stanford

Tossup games: USC, Oregon

Offensive rank#3, Defensive rank #3, Schedule rank #9, Total points – 15

6. Washington

Jake Locker is going to be the leader of 11 returning starters on offense, but unless he can suit up on defense the Huskies are going to have a hard time winning on the road. All of the pieces are in place offensively with one of the best tandems in the country at wide receiver in Devin Aguilar & Jermaine Kearse, a solid tight end in Kavario Middleton, and a capable weapon at running back in Chris Polk – all protected by an offensive line that accounts for 88 career starts. As good as the offense is going to be, the defense might be as equally bad. Mason Foster has great instincts at LB which led to 3 interceptions, six 6 forced fumbles, and a fumble recovery in 2009, but other than that the cupboard is sparse in terms of depth and talent. Even worse for the Huskies is their brutal road schedule that includes trips to the better team in every region – Oregon, USC, Cal, and Arizona. They will have an opportunity to gain some hype early with a game against a preseason top 10 team Nebraska, but a loss will certainly damage their confidence going forward.

Projected record: 8-4

Projected losses: Nebraska, @USC, @Oregon, @Cal,

Tossup games: @Arizona, Stanford, OSU

Offensive rank #1, Defensive rank #8, Schedule rank #10, Total points – 19

7. Stanford

Stanford’s had the second best offensive line in the nation by only giving up 8 sacks all year. Part of the reason for low sack totals has to do with the success they had running the ball (537 attempts), so they only threw 313 passes all year. That luxury is gone now that Gerhart is playing on Sundays, so I’m expecting that total to go up. The guys behind Gerhart might be quicker, but they are not going to wear down opposing defenses and Andrew Luck will be the primary weapon that defensive coordinators will try to stop. The strong offensive line will help, but I’m expecting some drop-off in the offense this year. The defense has switched to a 3-4 in the off-season, but they lack the right personnel to be good this year. They have a strong linebacker corps led by Shane Skov, but they don’t have the big defensive lineman to hold the blocks and create opportunities for them. It will take a couple years of recruiting to get the right pieces in place for this defense as their crosstown rival Cal is finding out. The Cardinal were 2nd to last in the Pac-10 defense last year giving up 402 yards per game, and it could be even worse this year without a strong running game to burn the clock. The Cardinal get USC at home, but have to play Oregon and Washington on the road.

Projected record: 6-6

Projected losses: @Notre Dame, USC, @Oregon, @Washington, @Cal, @UCLA

Tossup games: Arizona, ASU

Offensive rank #7, Defensive rank #9, Schedule rank #4, Total points – 20

8. UCLA

Coach Rick Neuheisel is coming off his best recruiting class since arriving in LA, but when you’re expecting freshman to make a big impact on your team, you’re in trouble. UCLA has a combined 92 career starts on the offensive line, but they gave up 28 sacks last year so the talent on the line is as big of a question mark as every other position on this team. The Bruins have two preseason All-Americans with linebacker Akeem Ayers and safety Rahim Moore, but I’m expecting their production to decrease with Brian Price going on to the NFL. Neuheisel brought in two blue-chip guys on the defensive line in Owa Odighuizuwa (try saying that five times fast) and Cameron Marsh, but it won’t be enough to take over games or compensate for their lack of offense. UCLA also faces a tough schedule with Kansas St, Texas, and Houston before they start conference play. The young guys will either gain quality experience or have their confidence shot in the process.

Projected record: 4-8

Projected losses: Houston, @Texas, @Cal, @Oregon, Arizona, Oregon St, @Washington, USC

Tossup games: ASU, WSU, Kansas St

Offensive rank #8, Defensive rank #6, Schedule rank #7, Total points -21

9. Arizona St

It was only three years ago that Arizona St was competing for the conference championship, but they are 9-15 since 2007 and are riding a six game losing streak into 2010. The offensive line has been a major problem for this team in the past three years and one of the main reasons they averaged only 22.3 ppg in 2010. The Sun Devils only welcome back three starters on offense and could be even worse than last year, their defense should be salty and will be led by the All-American Vontaze Burfict at MLB. They only return four starters, but they have are solid at defensive end and have proven the ability to stop the run. The schedule has them facing the best team of every region on the road (USC, Cal, Oregon, Washington), but they weren’t likely to beat them anyway so all of their home games become winnable. I wouldn’t be surprised to see them post a winning record at home, but for now we’ve got them pegged at 3-9.

Projected Record: 3-9

Projected losses: @Wisconsin, Oregon, @Oregon St, @Washington, @Cal, @USC, Stanford, Arizona, UCLA

Tossup games: WSU, Stanford, UCLA

Offensive rank #10, Defensive rank #5, Schedule rank #8, Total points – 23

10. Washington St

The good news for Washington St is that they face the best team from every region at home (Oregon, Cal, USC, Arizona) the bad news is that they won’t be able to win any of them. The Cougars only have a couple chances to get a conference win, and it will have to be against UCLA or ASU on the road. They have two capable QB’s in Jeff Tuel or Marshall Lobbestael, and I’m expecting both of them to play this year based on the 53 sacks they gave up a year ago. This is the deepest team that Paul Wulff has fielded since he’s been here, but they are still a couple years away from making some noise in the conference.

Projected record: 2-10

Projected wins: Montana St, SMU

Tossup games: ASU, UCLA

Offensive rank # 9, Defensive rank #10, Schedule rank #1 Total points – 20

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