1. Alabama (8-0)
2. Florida (7-1)
3. Auburn (7-1)
Chief second-guesser of the Southern California Trojans this year has been Coach John McKay. Ever since USC was upset in its season opener by Arkansas, he has been muttering that those seers who predicted a national championship might have been breathing too deeply in freeway traffic. This week El Trojan was lucky to tie California 15-15, and McKay was even more vitriolic. "We stunk," he snapped hoarsely after Cal beat a 20-point spread. "We refused to play well. Cal deserved to win." The Golden Bears had, indeed, moved from their own 20 to the USC 17 in the last minute of play, but freshman Jim Breech's field-goal try from the 24 was off to the left with seven seconds remaining. How does this affect USC's Rose Bowl hopes? "We can't think in the future," McKay said. "We have no future. We are not as good as we thought we were."
If not forcibly restrained, UCLA and Washington will jump on each other at the drop of a referee's handkerchief. As evidence, some scores in recent years: UCLA 57, UW 14; UW 61, UCLA 20; and last year UCLA 62, UW 13. This explains why Washington Coach Jim Owens was calling timeouts in the final seconds, angling for yet another score with his Huskies leading 31-9. Sophomore Fullback Robin Earl rushed for 152 yards in 22 carries to help Washington dominate the game. "He has added about 20% efficiency to our offense," Owens said happily. "He keeps the linebackers frozen and that opens up all the other phasss of our game."
The Miners of Texas El Paso mucked out their first win after 17 consecutive losses to Arizona State by upsetting the Sun Devils 31-27. Arizona had been favored by as much as 42 points and had been proud of a defense that had allowed an average of just seven points per game. State lost five of six fumbles, two of which set up an early 16-7 UTEP lead on 31-, 25- and 51-yard field goals by Bronko Belichesky. The Devils put together an 86-yard drive just before halftime, and fast Freddie Williams went 85 yards for another score immediately after the kickoff, but that led only to overconfidence, which was shattered when UTEP's Bob McKinley belted over following a pair of sustained fourth-quarter drives.
After scoring two touchdowns in the first eight minutes, North Texas held on to overthrow San Diego State 14-9. Dave Deaton's 26-yard interception return and Vance Jackson's 25-yard reception of a Ken Washington pass gave North Texas the game.
Back in the Pacific Eight, Stanford's Indians scalped Oregon State 17-13 to tie for the conference lead, and Washington State beat Oregon 21-16.
Arizona was idle while Colorado State edged Wyoming by the bizarre score of 11-6 on the strength of three field goals of 47, 47 and 44 yards by Clark Kemble and a safety forced by Middle Guard Loren Mulkins.
1. USC (5-1-1)
2. Arizona (5-2)
3. Arizona State (5-2)