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Pac-12 Confidential

Bud Withers offers an inside look at the Pac-12 Conference and the national college scene.

October 20, 2014 at 12:57 PM

Kessler, Randall and Phillips top players; I beg to differ

The Pac-12 announced Monday its football players of the week — USC quarterback Cody Kessler, Arizona State defensive back Damarious Randall and Utah kicker Andy Phillips.

Kessler threw for a USC record seven touchdowns, Randall had seven tackles, recovered a fumble and forced one in the win over Stanford, and Phillips had three field goals at Oregon State, two from 40 yards and beyond.

I went in a completely rogue this week. First, I voted for Utah running back Devontae Booker rather than Kessler, believing Booker’s 233 yards rushing against a good Oregon State defense to be more worthy than Kessler’s effort, which came against the worst team in the league.

On defense, I wrote in the name of Marcus Rios, who wasn’t nominated by UCLA. But being a sucker for a great story, I opted for Rios, who had a life-threatening, sinus fungal infection that dropped his weight to about 130 pounds two years ago, before he came back and Saturday, had a game-saving interception on a terrific catch at Cal.

Finally, I went for Zane Gonzalez as the special-teams player of the week for his four field goals that helped beat Stanford for ASU.

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