Stanford’s run atop the power rankings came to an end after one week, even though the Cardinal managed to pull off a win.
However, the 15-14 come-from-behind victory at Oregon State was not impressive and the Cardinal dropped a spot behind Washington.
Stanford did play without Heisman Trophy candidate running back Bryce Love due to an ankle injury, but the Cardinal needed a late OSU fumble and ensuing short drive that turned into a touchdown with 20 seconds left to escape.
Washington, which was coming off a bye, regained the top spot with a thumping of UCLA in a game where the Huskies relied heavily on the ground attack against a porous Bruins run defense.
USC and Arizona both moved into the top four of the rankings with wins last week. USC rebounded from the Notre Dame debacle with a convincing victory at Arizona State.
Arizona, meanwhile, crushed Washington State and quarterback Khalil Tate won an unprecedented fourth straight offensive player of the week honor from the conference.
Something will have to give this Saturday when the teams meet in the Coliseum with the Pac-12 South title lead at stake.
Washington State and Arizona State both dropped two spots and out of the top four.
The Cougars are home to Stanford in a top-25 showdown that has lost some luster but still has Pac-12 North title implications.
The Sun Devils will look to bounce back at home against Colorado, which is coming off a win over California.
Showing just how much can change in a week, Oregon jumped up four spots from 11 to seven after a win over Utah. The Ducks head to Seattle to take on the Huskies after giving up 70 last year at home.
Oregon State is still in the cellar but received seven points, one more than last week. The Beavers are at California this Saturday.
UCLA was at Utah on Friday night.
Here’s a look at Gameday’s rankings this week:
1. Washington (58 points, 7-1, 4-1, last week 2): Washington used its run game to dominate against UCLA while the defense was once again stout. Ducks come to town this week
2. Stanford (52 points, 6-2, 5-1, last week 1): Stanford escaped Reser Stadium with a win, thanks to a late fumble and touchdwon. Cardinal nowhere close to the same team without Bruce Love on the field.
3. USC (50 points, 7-2, 5-1 Pac-12, last week 5): Nice bounce-back win at Arizona State probably saved the Trojans' season. Now comes another challenge against a team from Arizona.
4. Arizona (49 points, 6-2, 4-1, last week 6): Khalil Tate. That’s all you need to know. With Tate at the helm, Wildcats offense has been potent. Will it be potent enough against the Trojans?
5. Washington State (41 points, 7-2, 4-2 last week 3): The road has been unkind for the Cougars, who are now 1-2 away from home. Cougars play final home game this week against Stanford.
6. Arizona State (34 points, 4-4, 3-2, last week 4): Sun Devils had a great opportunity at home but couldn’t keep pace in loss to Trojans. ASU needs to get back on track at home against Colorado.
7. Oregon (26 points, 5-4, 2-4, last week 11): Oregon ended a three-game losing streak and now needs one win to become bowl eligible. Tough challenge at Washington this week.
8. UCLA (24 points, 4-4, 2-3, last week 8): Bruins put up more of a fight after quarterback Josh Rosen left the game against the Huskies. UCLA played at Utah on Friday.
9. Colorado (21 points, 5-4, 2-4, last week 10): Buffaloes ran past the Golden Bears at home and now need just one win to become bowl eligible. Tough road trip to Arizona State.
10. Utah (15 points, 4-4, 1-4, last week 7): The losing streak was at four going into Friday’s home game with UCLA. Nothing has gone right for Utes since 4-0 start.
11. California (13 points, 4-5, 1-5, last week 9): A promising season has fallen apart. Golden Bears must win at home against Oregon State or a bowl bid may not come.
12. Oregon State (7 points, 1-7, 0-5, last week 12): It was a tough loss against the Cardinal but Cory Hall has the Beavers playing well. Oregon State has a great chance to get its first Pac-12 win of the season at Cal.