Andrew Luck is increasingly asserting his value to any potential NFL employer
Week 3 arrives to the Pac-12 football conference and some far-reaching impact games are on tap that could affect the conference outcome and perhaps even a BCS berth (or two).
The only real cupcake games in the Pac-12 this week are Missouri State visiting Oregon, and Presbyterian meeting Cal. Not much suspense, but a great opportunity to get some backup players valuable game experience.
That's enough said for those two games.
Fresh off their overtime loss to Cal last week, Colorado travels to Denver to face Colorado State in a neutral site game.
The Buffaloes need to avoid a letdown against the Rams. In fact, many are picking Colorado State to win the game in a close one.
Colorado overcomes an injury riddled offensive line and redeems themselves.
Colorado 21 - CSU 6
Let's call this the "got a lot to prove bowl."
Texas arrives after a dismal 2010 with a new coaching staff and a renewed chip on their shoulder.
Forget the battle for Los Angeles, UCLA is simply gasping for air after a ugly loss at Houston and an unconvincing win over San Jose State.
Look for the Bruins to make a valiant effort, but Texas will pull away with a win at the Rose Bowl.
Texas 34 - UCLA 19
Washington quarterback Keith Price looked like a convincing replacement for Jake Locker in the Huskies' first two outings against Eastern Washington and Hawaii.
However, now the Dawgs arrive in Lincoln and will face 11th ranked Nebraska, led by QB Taylor Martinez.
This huge test for Washington will prove to be a bit too much and Nebraska rolls.
Washington 17 - Nebraska 42
OK, both these teams are 2-0 and have some renewed confidence since 2010.
San Diego State has the highest quality win of the two, over Army last week 23-20.
Washington State, like UCLA, is in "save our coach's job" mode. The Cougars are certainly doing a better job of it than the Bruins.
The Cougars beat Idaho State and UNLV, two perennial doormats in the college football world. However, they are markedly improved over last year.
Expect this to be a close game and the Aztecs to go home winners.
WSU 14 - SDSU 17
Dennis, I know you're hearing a lot about how good the Sun Devils are and how badly Illinois is going to play on Saturday.
Fair warning, playing a Big Ten team is still playing a Big Ten team. When you play them at their house, it'll be hot, loud and difficult.
Yes, the Sun Devils are good. That win over Missouri really put them on the national stage. Look for ASU to have a slow first half, then open it up to win big over Illinois.
Illinois 17 - ASU 42
A lot of college football pundits are saying that Syracuse is much improved and will give the Trojans a run for it.
I'm not on that bandwagon quite yet and think that USC's anger over a no bowl appearance sanction this year outweighs any perceived improvement by the Orange.
USC wins big in this game.
Syracuse 13 - USC 51
The first two games of the season for BYU were decided by a combined total of two points—one win and one loss.
The Utes are also 1-1 and are coming off a sketchy and nervous Pac-12 debut against USC.
Obviously this game pits two rivals looking for bragging rights in the state, regardless of conference affiliations.
Expect a lot of emotions in the game with BYU squeaking out a win.
Utah 13 - BYU 17
Is there anything more entertaining than watching a Mike Stoops sideline meltdown?
Stanford is rapidly convincing America that the loss of their head coach last year will not affect the Cardinal's ability to win games.
Arizona is coming off a very ugly loss to Oklahoma State in Stillwater. Nick Foles appeared lost at times, although his passing accuracy was good, if not a little better than last year.
Stanford has the luxury of the probably Heisman Trophy winner in Andrew Luck. And, as a result, a win in Tucson also.
Stanford 38 - Arizona 21