2022 Week 12 Pac-12 Football Power Rankings
Posted on November 15, 2022
The Conference of Champions’ Playoff hopes took a substantial hit with losses by both Oregon and UCLA. Anything can happen, but the Pac-12’s lone remaining team in contention is USC.
The surprising results shook up this week’s Power Ranking as voted on by our writers and broadcasters.
The list below is a composite of each voter’s lists, while the table at the bottom displays the individual rankings.
1. USC (9-1, 7-1) ▲2
The Trojans struggled in the first quarter against Colorado but scored 53 points in the final 45 minutes at the Coliseum.
The season-ending injury to Travis Dye dampened the blowout victory, though.
Facing two ranked opponents to finish the year, USC’s defense is under microscope.
The unit has allowed 33.0 points per game over the last four matchups and gave up 62 points to UCLA last season.
2. Utah (8-2, 6-1) ▲2
Overcoming a slow start, the Utes put it together in the final three quarters at Rice-Eccles Stadium.
The victory sets the stage for a colossal matchup with Oregon this weekend.
The path to the Pac-12 Championship is relatively straightforward: Win the final two games of the year and the Utes are in.
3. Oregon (8-2, 6-1) ▼2
Overly aggressive play-calling cost the Ducks on Saturday night.
The failed fourth down attempt deep inside Oregon’s own territory led to the game-winning field goal, but the onside kick attempt in the first half also contributed to three Washington points.
The defeat knocks UO out of the Playoff race.
Still, the Rose Bowl remains a possibility if the Ducks win out.
4. UCLA (8-2, 5-2) ▼2
Needing a win to stay in the Playoff picture, the Bruins stumbled when it mattered most.
The defeat to an inferior team is emblematic of the Chip Kelly era in Westwood, a seemingly annual failure that is as inexplicable as it is embarrassing.
The path to the Pac-12 Championship Game is now a long shot, while a New Year’s Six Bowl might be out of reach, too.
5. Washington (8-2, 5-2) ◄►
Kalen DeBoer was already a year or two ahead of schedule, but the victory over Oregon exponentially moved the needle forward.
The win sets the expectation for a 10-win regular season and might make Washington a candidate for a New Year’s Six Bowl.
The magical turnaround is attributable to the fit between DeBoer’s offensive system and the Huskies’ personnel.
Credit the UW staff for putting it all together in just a single offseason.
6. Oregon State (7-3, 4-3) ◄►
Handling California with ease, the Beavers put the three-point loss to the Huskies behind them.
The 38 points scored was the second-highest in conference play while the 10 points allowed were the second-fewest all season.
But Oregon State faces two difficult games to finish the year and its bowl destination is yet to be decided.
Winless in Tempe since 2009, a victory in the desert could diversify OSU’s bowl options.
7. Washington State (6-4, 3-4) ◄►
It was a tale of two halves in Pullman.
Scoring 28 points in the first two quarters while holding Arizona State scoreless, it appeared that Washington State would run away with the game.
But the pedal was let off and the Coug Raid didn’t score in the final thirty minutes.
The light-switch nature of the offensive production is worrying and arguably indicates confidence issues within the staff.
8. Arizona (4-6, 2-5) ▲2
Johnny Nansen and the Arizona defense gave the Conference a taste of what the Wildcats are capable of.
The victory in Pasadena was entirely attributable to the defensive stops generated, a testament to the healthy rotation of veteran and freshmen players.
Nansen’s group posted three sacks, three fourth-down stops, and seven tackles for loss.
If the UA defense can string together two similar performances to finish the year, bowl eligibility is a distinct possibility.
9. Arizona State (3-7, 2-5) ◄►
At risk of posting one of the worst seasons in program history, Arizona State is in dire straights.
If the Sun Devils lose their final two games, the three wins will be the fewest in a non-Covid season since 1994.
The roster did battle back in Pullman, yet the coaching decisions to go for two on three separate occasions made zero sense.
It may not have made a difference in the end, but the odd moves are a worrying sign.
10. Cal (3-7, 1-6) ▼2
Justin Wilcox fired offensive coordinator Bill Musgrave and offensive line coach Angus McClure after the 38-10 loss to Oregon State.
The moves were needed and arguably should have come earlier in the year. Musgrave’s offense has been woefully ineffective since he arrived in Berkeley.
His termination opens the door for a much-needed schematic overhaul on offense.
11. Stanford (3-7, 1-7) ◄►
The Tree were blown out again last weekend, an occurrence that has become far too common.
When will the Stanford administration say, “Enough is enough?”
Injuries have played a role, but those problems are arguably attributable to strength and condition shortcomings.
The common denominator is a staff failing to get the job done and an athletic department complicit in the results.
12. Colorado (1-9, 1-6) ◄►
The off-field action surrounding Colorado’s search for a new head coach is heating up.
Reportedly entering the closing stages of the hiring process, the CU administration may make an announcement within the next few weeks.
Despite the down year, student support for the program appears to remain strong. That’s a positive sign for a team in the infancy of its rebuild.
How our Senior Football Writers and Broadcasters Voted
—More from Dane Miller—
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