UCLA Washington St Football

UCLA's Kyle Philips (2) returns a punt for a touchdown in front of teammates Alex Johnson (19), Mo Osling III (7) and Washington State's Rodrick Fisher (88) in the fourth quarter on Saturday in a stunning 67-63 win over the Cougars.

What an ending to the first full week of Pac-12 Conference play on the gridiron.

If you were watching Washington State clobber UCLA in the third quarter Saturday night and decided to spend the rest of your evening doing something else, like going to bed, you probably woke up to quite the shock.

The Cougars led 49-17 over the hapless Bruins with just under 7 minutes left in the third but then UCLA scored 29 unanswered points to get within 49-46 with 14:28 to play.

A Kyle Phillips 67-yard punt return gave UCLA the lead and the Bruins pulled off the stunner of the season to date.

A little before that outcome, Colorado went to Tempe, Arizona, and knocked the Sun Devils from the ranks of the unbeaten with a 34-31 win.

Both Arizona State (24) and Washington State (19) fell out of The Associated Press poll on Sunday.

Saturday night’s chaos came on the heels of a Friday night showdown in the Coliseum where USC, behind a third-string quarterback, knocked off then No. 10- Utah to keep the early lead for the South Division title.

That left the California Golden Bears as the lone undefeated conference team through the first four weeks after they used a goal-line stand on the final play of the game to preserve a 28-20 win at Ole Miss earlier in the day.

Big winners

Along with Cal and USC, the weekend was big for Oregon and Washington.

The Ducks continue to be dominant on defense, and have not allowed a touchdown since that game-winner by Auburn with nine seconds left in the opener, after a 21-6 win at Stanford.

If you are scoring at home that’s 12 consecutive quarters without the opposition getting into the end zone.

The Ducks also got a boost with Auburn picking up a road win at Texas A&M. Oregon could use a strong season by the Tigers in its bid to possibly make the four-team College Football Playoff.

The Huskies may not have been playing a conference game, but the 45-19 win at BYU, a week after the Cougars upset USC at home, was impressive.

Quarterback Jacob Eason was nearly perfect, completing 24 of 28 passes for 290 yards and three touchdowns to lead the offense.

Record performance

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Lost in WSU's stunning defeat was the performance of quarterback Anthony Gordon, who completed 41 of 61 passes for 570 yards and nine, yes nine, touchdowns.

UCLA’s Dorian Thompson-Robinson wasn’t too shabby, going 25 of 38 for 507 yards and five touchdowns.

Matchups to watch

All five matchups this week are intriguing as all our conference battles.

Arizona State is at California on Friday night. A win by the Bears would set up a showdown at Oregon, which has a bye, the next week.

USC heads to Washington in a must-win for the Huskies if they want to stay in the hunt for the North Division title. The Trojans don’t want to come back to the pack in the South after the big win over Utah.

It will be a two-game slide for either Utah or Washington State as the Utes host the Cougars with both teams looking to bounce back.

Oregon State, fresh off a bye, gets a Stanford team that has lost three straight. Can the Beavers open conference play with a win?

UCLA will play the second of back-to-back road games against an Arizona team that is coming off a bye.

Colorado and Oregon have a bye.

Polls watch

Thanks to the loss to the Trojans, the Utes dropped nine spots to 19. Oregon moved up three spots to No. 13 and is just ahead of Cal at No. 15. The Golden Bears jumped eight spots.

Washington is up five spots to No. 17 and USC is back in the poll after falling out last week, at No. 21.

Power rankings

The chaos over the weekend, which could take place every weekend from here on out, has thrown these power rankings for a loop. Oregon (3-1, 1-0) moves to the top spot followed closely by Cal (4-0, 1-0), Washington (3-1, 0-1) and USC (3-1, 2-0) in the top four spots.

Utah (3-1, 0-1) comes in at No. 5 followed by Colorado (3-1, 1-0), Arizona State (3-1, 0-1) and Washington State (3-1, 0-1). Arizona (2-1, 0-0) is at No. 9 with UCLA (1-3, 1-0) up to No. 10, followed by Stanford (1-3, 0-2) and Oregon State (1-2, 0-0).

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Sports Editor

Sports editor of the Corvallis Gazette-Times and Albany Democrat-Herald