Rob Malara

Pac-12 Power Rankings: Week 13


It’s clear as a reader, you are accepting of how weird we are in what we provide at times on this site.  With that in mind we bring you this week’s rankings with another twist.  Comparing each and every team in the Pac-12 as we head into the first part of Rivalry Week as a junk food.  While the phrase junk food encompasses a wide variety of delectable treats, comparisons were narrowed down to packaged goodies.

I highly recommend you go out and purchase each and all of the twelve items below.  Then read over the descriptions and feel free to let us know where we hit and where we missed.

1.#2 Oregon (9-1, 6-1, Previous Rank 1)

Week 12: On Bye.

Junk food comparison: Lay’s Kettle Cooked Jalepeno Chips

While not the complete replacement of a perfect meal, it checks everything off the list you’re looking for in stand-out junk food. A hint of spice blended into a crunchy chip.  Covers lots of desires, until you eat them until you hate yourself.

2.#13 Arizona State (8-2, 5-2, Previous Rank 2)

Week 12: Lost to Oregon State; 35-27.   

Junk food comparison:  Cool Ranch Doritos

They’ve seen many different applications this year especially on defense (thanks Taco Bell), but when it comes down to flavor they are a little risky and like to be shoved down your throat in waves, rather than just one at a time.

3.#9 UCLA (8-2, 5-2, Previous Rank 3)

Week 12: On Bye.

Junk food comparison: Little Debbie Star Crunch

How are these things so good?  They kind of look like astronaut food. Any normal Joe looks over these and sees nothing special. But with a little investigation you start to see what makes these things irresistible.  Just don’t add any heat to them, they melt under pressure.

4.#15 Arizona (8-2, 5-2, Previous Rank 4)

Week 12: Defeated Washington; 27-26.

Junk food comparison: Gingersnaps

Not a ton of sex appeal but really good at what is desired with some spice.  You thought I was going for the low hanging fruit with Scooby Snacks didn’t you?

5.#17 Utah (7-3, 4-3, Previous Rank 5)

Week 12: Defeated Stanford; 20-17.

Junk food comparison: Peeps

Some say they would be even better if prepared a certain way, but every so often in the right setting they are one of the best of the group.

6.#19 USC (7-3, 6-2, Previous Rank 6)

Week 12: Defeated Cal; 38-30.

Junk food comparison: Kellogg’s Rice Krispies Treats

Lots of things that people like but get awfully soft when things heat up.

7.Cal (5-5, 3-5, Previous Rank 9)

Week 12: Defeated by USC; 38-30.

Junk food comparison: Chili Cheese Fritos


8.Stanford (5-5, 3-4, Previous Rank 7)

Week 12: Lost to Utah; 20-17.

Junk food comparison: Smartfood Popcorn

There’s something intriguing about going back to the basics.  And while others may come and go, Stanford, much like Smartfood popcorn always looks to be there (well, except in 2014).  A strong belief in quality while keeping things simple has kept this snack going for a long time while other struggle with negative consumer images.

9.Washington (6-5, 2-5, Previous Rank 8)

Week 12: Lost to Arizona; 27-26.

Junk food comparison: Twinkies

Follow the old-fashioned blue print of good defense and running the football.  Leaves something to be desired, but when dropped in boiling oil, amazing things happen.

10.Washington State (3-7, 2-5, Previous Rank 10)

Week 12: On Bye.

Junk food comparison: Funyuns

Let’s just say an acquired taste.  Certainly things here than many crave, but with a residue of onion breath, they are down right offensive.

11.Oregon State (5-5, 2-5, Previous Rank 11)               

Week 12: Defeated Arizona State; 35-27.

Junk food comparison: Wise Potato Chips

The old faithful of the junk food world.  Slightly out-dated and lacking the panache of today’s standard chips and other snacks.

12.Colorado (2-8, 0-7, Previous Rank 12)

Week 12: On Bye.

Junk food comparison: Anything from NatureBox

You know it’s going to be the way of the world sooner or later, but right now it just doesn’t match up to the old faithfuls of the conference.

How do you rank the Pac-12 top-to-bottom? Let us know on FacebookTwitter, or e-mail and you could make it on the next ASU Devils Den Podcast.

About Rob Malara

Rob Malara

Rob Malara is a 2002 Sun Devil grad having spent the majority of his time in Tempe as a football, basketball, and baseball season ticket holder and front row inhabitant. A member of the Football Writers Association of America, he hosted the ASU Devils podcast and was its sub-optimal technical producer through its lifespan. Currently the president of the ASU Alumni Association's Northern Colorado Club, he is part of a family of maroon and gold residing in Fort Collins with his Sun Devil wife and nearby Sun Devil sister.

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