And then there was one.
Four decisive victories have propelled the University of Washington football team all the way up the Sports Illustrated/Pac-12 power rankings to a tie for second place with Utah, trailing only USC.
Just eight points in the voting separate the reloaded and redrawn Huskies (4-0 overall, 1-0 conference), as facilitated by new coach Kalen DeBoer, and serious contender Utes (3-1, 1-0), from new coach Lincoln Riley's totally revamped Trojans (4-0, 2-0).
In the latest Associated Press poll, USC ranks 6th, Utah is 12th and the UW 15th, respectively.
The UW and USC have matched their victory totals from 2021 after each stumbled to a dismal 4-8 record that required coaching changes.
Beginning at No. 6, the UW has made steady progress up this conference polling each week, with a Friday meeting against UCLA (4-0, 1-0) at the Rose Bowl next up.
Even while undefeated, the Bruins remain sixth in the SI Pac-12 power ranks and unranked by the AP because they've played a relatively breezy schedule with victories over Alabama State, South Alabama, Bowling Green and Colorado.
Another victory over UCLA, and the Huskies will either squeeze or pass by the Trojans.
WEEK 5 / SI PAC-12 POWER RANKINGS
1. USC 4-0 . . . (5) 82 points
2 tie. Utah 3-1 . . . (1) 74
2 tie. WASHINGTON 4-0 . . . (1) 74
4. Oregon 3-1 . . . 59
5. Oregon State 3-1. . . 53
6. UCLA 4-0 . . . 51
7. Washington State 3-1 . . . 46
8. Cal 3-1 . . . 37
9. Arizona 2-2 . . . 26
10. Stanford 1-2 . . . 23
11. Arizona State 1-3 . . . 14
12. Colorado 0-4 . . . 7
JAKE CURTIS, CAL SPORTS REPORT
1. Washington; 2. USC; 3. UCLA; 4. Utah; 5. Oregon; 6. Oregon State; 7. Washington State; 8. Cal; 9. Arizona; 10. Stanford; 11. Arizona State; 12. Colorado
Comment: UCLA’s soft schedule comes to screeching halt the next two weeks when it faces Washington and Utah. Then will see whether the Bruins belong in the upper echelon of the conference. ASU and Colorado are battling to join the nation's Bottom 10.
MAX TORRES, DUCKS DIGEST
1. USC; 2. Utah; 3. Washington; 4. Oregon; 5. Washington State; 6. Oregon State; 7. UCLA; 8. Cal; 9. Stanford; 10. Arizona; 11. Arizona State; 12. Colorado
Comment: Oregon won a game that was almost too close for comfort in the Palouse. Nix's pick-six was erased by an amazing comeback that previous Oregon teams haven't been capable of. A late matchup against Stanford shouldn't be overlooked, but the Ducks keep stepping up when it matters most and should feel confident heading into that game.
KEVIN BORBA, ALL CARDINAL
1. USC; 2. Utah; 3. Washington; 4. Oregon; 5. Oregon State; 6. Washington State; 7. UCLA; 8. Cal; 9. Arizona; 10. Stanford; 11. Arizona State; 12. Colorado
Comment: Despite having an extra week to prepare, Stanford came out flat against Washington. It's hard to win when you get sacked 8 times and give the ball away three times. Traveling to Oregon will be no easy task, especially since it looks like they are figuring things out in Eugene.
SAM CONNON, ALL BRUINS
1. USC; 2. Utah; 3. Washington; 4. Oregon; 5. UCLA; 6. Oregon State; 7. Washington State; 8. Cal; 9. Arizona; 10. Stanford; 11. Arizona State; 12. Colorado
Comment: All the favorites won this weekend, leaving my ballot largely unchanged. USC's road win over Oregon State was ugly but impressive, as was Oregon's at Washington State. Those two outside challengers losing keeps UCLA in the top half of the conference for the time being, but that will be tested as they take on Washington, Utah and Oregon these next few weeks.
WYATT ALLSUP, USC
1. USC; 2. Washington; 3. Utah; 4. Oregon State; 5. Oregon; 6. Washington State; 7. UCLA; 8. Cal; 9. Arizona; 10. Stanford; 11. Arizona State; 12. Colorado
Comment: USC escapes with a narrow win over Oregon State, which gave a statement performance. Oregon doesn’t travel to Corvallis until the final week of the season, but if the two played right now, I think the Beavers look better. Not much movement in the bottom half of my rankings, but UCLA deserves some credit for starting 4-0. The Bruins haven’t really played anyone, but they can only beat who they play. Tough stretch coming up for them the next three weeks.
COLE BAGLEY, ALL UTES
1. Utah; 2. USC; 3. Washington; 4. Oregon State; 5. Oregon; 6. Washington State; 7. UCLA; 8. Cal; 9. Arizona; 10. Stanford; 11. Arizona State; 12. Colorado
Comment: While Utah is gaining momentum, USC and Oregon barely escaped this past week with wins. The next two weeks will be very telling and could cement the top 3-4 teams for the rest of the season.
DAN RALEY, INSIDE THE HUSKIES
1. USC; 2. Washington; 3. Utah; 4. UCLA; 5. Oregon; 6. Cal; 7. Oregon State; 8. Washington State; 9. Stanford; 10. Arizona; 11. Arizona State; 12. Colorado
Comment: The Huskies aren't unbeatable, but they're unstoppable on offense. They're averaging 44 points and 530 yards per game. They've scored on their first drive of every game so far. If UCLA is going to beat these guys on Friday night, they'll need to attack the secondary, which has replaced three of the five starters because of injury. This is a team that hasn't faced any adversity yet.
Go to si.com/college/washington to read the latest Inside the Huskies stories — as soon as they’re published.
Not all stories are posted on the fan sites.
Find Inside the Huskies on Facebook by searching: Inside Huskies/FanNation at SI.com
Follow Dan Raley of Inside the Huskies on Twitter: @DanRaley1 and @UWFanNation