The gauntlet of Stanford, Oregon, and USC has passed and the Huskies didn't perform the way we hoped they would to say the least. Now we have some easier sledding coming up against the Beavs and the Cougs but neither game is going to be a gimme in my opinion.
The Huskies are playing really flat right now and the coaches need to snap them out of it for the stretch run. It all starts up front and if Washington is going to win the next two games they need to start blocking better...which specifically means picking up the blitz packages.
OSU and WSU are going to send everything plus the kitchen sink after Keith Price. The Pac 12 coaches have figured out Price and Sark needs to counter it with something. That something likely will be 35 carries per game from Chris Polk and a bunch of passes over the middle to Kasen and ASJ.
8-4 is a very achievable goal and great achievement even though we all secretly hoped for more. This team is still young. It lacks experience and talent in key places which is keeping them from beating with elite squads. That being said they should be a lot more competitive at this point...they shouldn't be on the losing ends of blow outs.
I saw a lot of kids on the offensive line looking dazed and confused this past weekend which is a sign that they couldn't figure out what was being thrown at them. As Gecko pointed out in his summary after the game it looks like the correct line calls aren't being made.
The team also seems to lack emotional maturity. When things go wrong they tend to melt down and the coaches need to correct that pronto. This past week the trigger was a successful USC fake punt...the team needs to get past these bumps in the road.
The health of Keith Price is really pivotal right now. He says he will be fine by next Saturday but I think he has been pretty much stripped of any of the mobility he had at the start of the season. The offense needs to do some serious run blocking to take the pressure off of him and transfer it over to Chris Polk for the stretch run.
(I don't have a lot for you guys this morning because I am still on vacation and my I-Pad doesn't work very well with this publishing format.)
Pac 12 Power Poll
1. Oregon...Speed prevailed over brawn and the Ducks are likely headed to another BCS bowl game.
2. Stanford...Andrew Luck didn't bring his A game or the Ducks simply prevented him from reaching it. The Cards still could end up in a BCS game when it is all said and done.
3. Southern Cal...The Trojan defense simply pounded the Washington offense all day. Hats off the the USC coaching staff who have helped these kids get better each week.
4. Arizona State...How did these guys lose to back to back games to UCLA and WSU? Erickson's contract extension which was a sure thing a week or two ago is now in doubt.
5. Washington...I guess you can crown the Huskies as current king of the mediocre 6-4 Pac 12 teams. They beat who they are supposed to and lose badly to who they are supposed to lose to...a bookmakers dream.
6. Utah...The Utes became bowl eligible this weekend after knocking off UCLA at home.
7. California...Tedford has the Bears back in a bowl game after a convincing win over the Beavers.
8. UCLA...Bruins are 5-5 with Colorado and USC left on the schedule...looks like they will be bowling. Is that enough to save Rick's job?
9. Washington State...Is an upset win over ASU enough to save Paul Wulff's job? I think it just might be...that was a great win which was driven by some young talent. If they can beat Utah at home he probably deserves another shot.
10. Oregon State...The Beavers can't seem to pull out of the free fall this season. Up next are the Huskies at home.
12. Colorado....The Buff's climb out of the cellar with a nice win over Arizona. Good for Embree and company!
12. Arizona...Colorado jumped all over them in embarrassing fashion. Looks like the little surge they had after firing Stoops is over.