The No. 5 Cardinal will try to avoid last year’s fate Saturday when they play Washington State in Seattle, 366 days after losing their perfect record at Washington.
The second-ranked Ducks begin what they hope is another successful Pac-12 season Saturday night looking for a fifth consecutive victory over visiting California, which is facing its second straight top-5 opponent.
New California coach Sonny Dykes and his re-tooled Golden Bears visit No. 2 Oregon with both teams coming off byes, giving them plenty of time to ponder what they might see Saturday night in the conference opener for both teams.
The fifth-ranked Cardinal will put their 11-game winning streak on the line Saturday night at CenturyLink Field in Washington State’s annual game in Seattle.
With both Cal quarterback Jared Goff and Ducks quarterback Marcus Mariota seeing success with the pass so far this season, it is expected that Saturday night’s game could stretch very late.
Cal likely faces the toughest opener against the No. 2 Ducks in Eugene. The Golden Bears had a tough non-conference schedule, wrapping loses to Northwestern and Ohio State around a win over Portland State.
A 42-0 shutout of Idaho last weekend showed the Cougars (3-1, 1-0 Pac-12) are on the right track as they prepare to face No. 5 Stanford (3-0, 1-0 Pac-12) on Saturday.
The high-scoring Oregon Ducks are backed by a defense that has allowed only three touchdowns all season, leading to a trio of blowout victories.
Winning the Pac-12 is the only goal Stanford coach David Shaw talks about with his players before every season. This year, unseating Stanford is the goal of every other conference team.
There are four games this Saturday pitting Big Ten teams against top Pac-12 competition. This is the best opportunity until bowl season for the conferences to establish themselves as powers of the sport.