Posted on November 23, 2023
As always, these updated Power Rankings look at where each team stands at this moment in time.
They are likely to fluctuate from week to week as some squads get hot and others struggle through slumps.
Here’s a look at how the 25 teams stack up heading into Week 13.
1. Oregon (10-1, 7-1) ◄►Oregon continues to roll. They are averaging 46.5 points per game and allowing just 16.7 points per game.
I thought about jumping Washington to the top after their win, but I think Oregon is the better team. And they’ll figure it out in two weeks.
If the Ducks can get past OSU this week then the winner of the Pac-12 title game will be in the playoffs. It all works out as it should.
2. Washington (11-0, 8-0) ◄►Washington has now won 18 straight games, the second-longest active streak in the nation.
The Huskies left no doubt that they are worthy of a playoff spot. Take care of business in the final two games and their ticket will be punched.
3. Arizona (8-3, 6-2) ▲1Arizona got a huge win over Utah—huge from the standpoint of building the program, and huge from the standpoint that the Wildcats just took it to the Utes and dominated them.
UA should get the Territorial Cup and then have a shot at a 10-win season in the bowl game.
4. Oregon State (8-3, 5-3) ▼1Oregon State did everything they could against Washington except get the win. The Beavers have another chance this week to prove themselves against a playoff-caliber team with a trip to Eugene.
Win that one and the Beavs could be looking at a 10-win season. Lose to the Ducks and they will continue to be a notch below the elite level—but oh so close to it.
5. UNLV (9-2, 6-1) ◄►UNLV has all but locked up a spot in the MW Championship game. The Rebels have reached the nine-win mark for the first time since 1984.
UNLV has scored at least 24 points in nine straight games for the first time since they became an FBS program.
6. San Jose State (6-5, 5-2) ▲1San Jose State has won five in a row, averaging 39.0 points per game during the win streak. The Spartans have a chance at sharing the MW regular season crown this week.
SJSU needs a win and some help to get to play for the Conference Crown next week, but to even be in the discussion after the 1-5 start to the season is an accomplishment.
7. Utah (7-4, 4-4) ▼1The Utes got taken to the woodshed by Arizona. The 42 points they allowed were the most of the season and the most allowed by a Utah defense since October of 2022.
The good news is they get to rebound this week with Colorado.
8. UCLA (7-4, 4-4) ▲4
The Bruins have an elite defense. UCLA has held eight of their 11 opponents to under 100 yards rushing, the most for a Bruin squad since the 1985 team held nine opponents to under the 100-yard threshold.
Against USC the Bruins allowed just three rushing yards, the fewest they have allowed in a game in the last 17 seasons.
9. Boise State (6-5, 5-2) ▲4The demise of Boise State has proven to be fiction. The Broncos are not only bowl-eligible for the 26th consecutive season but sit one win away from likely playing for a conference title.
BSU cranked out 352 rushing yards last week and the defense recorded nine sacks. The Broncos are looking very dangerous right now.
10. Fresno State (8-3, 4-3) ▼2Fresno State has lost two in a row and the most recent was a stunner at home to New Mexico. The Bulldogs were a 23.5-point favorite and flat-out got beat.
They were outgained by almost 200 yards in the second half. A 10-win season is in reach, but the last few weeks have soured things a bit.
11. Wyoming (7-4, 4-3) ▲3In Wyoming’s 42-9 win over Hawai’i, the Cowboys wrapped up their first unbeaten season at home since 2019. Andrew Peasley looked like the greatest QB in the nation and the Cowboys played a complete game.
Now they just need to duplicate it on the road where they have yet to win a game this season.
12. Air Force (8-3, 5-2) ▼3The Falcons have lost three in a row and their 8-0 start to the season is a distant memory.
Air Force can still get to the MW Championship game, but they will need to improve on their recent form if they are to get a win in Boise.
13. USC (7-5, 5-4) ▼3The 6-0 start for the Trojans seems like an eternity ago. USC has completed its regular season with three straight losses, dropping five of the last six.
The dreadful night in South Bend exposed so much of the Trojans and a season that began with National Championship aspirations will most likely end in a destination like the Sun Bowl.
No disrespect to the Sun Bowl or El Paso, but that is a long way from the Playoffs.
14. Cal (5-6, 3-5) ▲2Fernando Mendoza has settled in as the starting QB and the offense is looking much better.
They will be tested this week against UCLA.
If the offense can produce the Bears could punch their bowl ticket Mendoza threw for a career-high 294 in the win over Stanford.
15. Colorado State (5-6, 3-4) ◄►Colorado State is one win away from becoming bowl eligible and they have a chance to get there at Hawai’i.
Despite the win over Nevada, CSU still had a hard time staying ahead of the chains with average distance to gain of 10.1 yards on their 11 third downs.
16. Utah State (5-6, 4-4) ▼5The Aggies had a chance to punch their ticket to a bowl game but came up way short against Boise State.
The good news is an 11th trip to a bowl game in the last 13 seasons is well within reach and all it will take is a victory over New Mexico.
Blake Anderson is 8-3 in November games since arriving in Logan.
17. BYU (5-6, 2-6) ◄►BYU played Oklahoma tough but came up short against the Sooners.
The Cougars have lost three in a row and the combined margin has been 148-50.
The Cougs need one win to get bowl eligible, it will take a win at Oklahoma State to get it done. BYU will be playing for a bowl while OSU will be playing for a spot in the Big 12 title game.
18. Washington State (5-6, 2-6) ▲4The Cougars ended their six-game losing streak with a dominant performance over Colorado. WSU had a season-high five sacks and nine TFL.
The 42-point first half was the highest scoring half of the season for the Cougs. WSU ran for 127 yards in the win, the most they have run for against FBS opponents in 2023.
Pull the upset of Washington and you get to go bowling. Sadly, they don’t get the Buffs again.
19. Stanford (3-8, 2-7) ▲1Stanford looked much better in their loss to Cal than they did in the loss to Oregon State.
Giving up 62 to the Beavers could have ended things for the Cardinal this season. They came out in the rivalry game and played hard and that is a plus for Troy Taylor’s program.
Another rivalry game is on deck with Notre Dame.
20. New Mexico (4-7, 2-5) ▲4The Lobos entered the 2023 season with a 3-20 mark in Mountain West play under Danny Gonzales. The Lobos have a chance to pick up their third conference win of this season in the finale.
It may not seem like a 5-win regular season could muster much enthusiasm, but it would be their best win total since 2016. The question is if it’s enough to give the staff a fifth season?
21. Hawai’i (4-8, 2-5) ▼2Hawai’i’s two-game win streak is gone, but they do have a chance to end the season with three wins in their final four games.
Timmy Chang has found his QB in Brayden Schrager who appears to have a much better command of the offense this season than last.
The Rainbow Warriors have a foundation laid, now they’ll just need to build on it in year three.
22. Arizona State (3-8, 2-6) ▼4The Sun Devils pulled off the big win over UCLA then hit the buzz saw that is Oregon. It was 42-0 before the break and the Ducks were rolling.
Arizona State is beat up. Better days are on the way but for now things are pretty dire in Tempe.
23. Colorado (4-7, 1-7) ▼2The Buffaloes have now lost five in a row and looked really bad in the beatdown that was administered by Washington State. Let’s be clear, the 56-14 loss was to Washington State, not Washington.
The prior two weeks Colorado played a couple of good teams pretty tough. That was not the case in Pullman. The line play on both sides of the ball needs to improve.
But it also seems like there may be more issues in Boulder than just the lines.
24. Nevada (2-9, 2-5) ▼1It is now a three-game losing streak for Nevada after their modest two game run of wins.
The Wolf Pack has turned each of their last seven turnovers into points, they just need to create a few more.
25. San Diego State (3-8, 1-6) ◄►San Diego State has not allowed a TD in the first quarter in any of their last eight games, that is the good news.
The bad news is they have lost eight of the last nine they have played. The current four-game losing streak could easily be five as they enter the long off season.
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