Sunday, September 7, 2008

The Pac-10: Week 2 in review

Here's what we know:
The Pac-10 refs are in midseason form as the worst in the nation
At the end of a great game between Washington and BYU, Husky quarterback Jake Locker, after scoring what would have been the game-tying touchdown, threw the ball in the air as he celebrated with his teammates. He was flagged for unsportsmanlike conduct. With the penalty, the extra point went from a chip shot to much less certain 35-yard field goal. The Cougars blocked the field goal and won the game. The call was terrible at best. The officials maintain that they were only following the rules since the rules explicitly prohibit throwing the call, and that there is no judgment involved and thus have no choice whether to throw the flag or not.

Balderdash. EVERY call is an judment call. Locker was not taunting or drawing attention to himself which is what the spirit of rule is meant to discourage. Instead, the refs took the game out of the hands of the players and coaches. Credit BYU for a great game. They did what they had to do. Washington should have been given the same opportunity. Terrible call. Terrible rule.

How good are they really?
Arizona, Arizona State, Cal and Oregon all look awfully impressive, but it's hard to say how good they are after beating the likes of Toledo, Stanford, Washington State and Utah State respectively. We'll know more soon as Oregon goes on the road against Purdue next week. The following week, Georgia visits Arizona State and Arizona plays UCLA. We won't know for sure about Cal until October 4th when they host the Sun Devils

Cheer up Beaver fan. It's not the end...yet
Penn State ran all over the Beavers, but Mike Riley teams get usually get better as the year goes on, so the season isn't over. Unfortunately, there is only so much a team with an average quarterback and below average defense can do. With the way the league is shaping up, Washington, Washington State and maybe UCLA are your only real chances for wins.

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