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Husky Football Blog

The latest news and analysis on the Montlake Dawgs.

October 11, 2012 at 4:28 PM

Pac-12 picks, Week Seven

It was another week where the spread got me. I correctly picked the winner of all five Pac-12 games last weekend (including Cal’s upset of UCLA — so, yeah for me).

But on games like Oregon-UW and Oregon State-WSU, I was just off on the score and the spread — more proof I’m glad I didn’t follow-up on that brief plan I had as a 24-year-old to move to Vegas and make my living there.

As for this weekend’s games, it’s another intriguing slate — including two non-conference tilts (one of my favorite words) stuck right in the middle of the season.

As always, the lines are from today’s Seattle Times, and I will reserve the pick on the UW-USC game until Friday:

ARIZONA STATE AT COLORADO (Devils by 22.5): This game, though, may not fit the intriguing angle. If ASU is as good as I think they are — which is Top 25-caliber — then they should make relatively quick work of the Buffs. You can argue strength of schedules and all, but this is the point of year where stats start to take on some meaning. And in what some coaches consider as important as any other — yards gained and allowed per play — ASU is right there. ASU leads the Pac-12 in yards allowed per play at 4.0 (Oregon is next at 4.6), and is fourth in yards gained per play at 6.2. Colorado is near or at the bottom of both. ASU 45, COLORADO 17.

OREGON STATE AT BYU (Cougars by 6): The line on this game has moved from 3.6 to 6 since the news broke that OSU will be without QB Sean Mannion for a couple of weeks, at least, with a knee injury. BYU, though, also has QB issues and trouble scoring when not playing bad defenses, which obviously is not OSU. This game will test how much improved OSU’s own running game is — it’s been better, but last week’s closer-than-expected game with WSU showed it’s still got a ways to go. Expect BYU to really gang up on that and force Cody Vaz to make plays. Seems like a lot working against OSU here. BYU 21, OSU 13.

STANFORD AT NOTRE DAME (Irish by 7.5): Stanford’s been a fairly confounding team of late, beating USC, losing at UW, then rallying to score 55 points in a win over Arizona after scoring just 34 in its previous two games combined. Notre Dame, meanwhile, looks like it may be back for good behind a defense that is second in the nation in points allowed (7.8). Here’s to thinking the Irish are for real. NOTRE DAME 24, STANFORD 10.

CAL AT WASHINGTON STATE (Bears by 7.5): Interesting week in Pullman where Mike Leach called out his seniors — and now has to hope they respond with a good effort on Mike Leach Bobblehead Day. Just about any statistical comparison favors Cal. But logic is often thrown out the window when it comes to the Bears, again living up to their reputation as one of the most erratic teams in the conference, getting off the mat last week to beat previously-but-no-longer-surging UCLA, 43-17. WSU’s defense has improved of late, and if the Cougars can get to Zach Maynard — Cal has allowed an NCAA-high 29 sacks — then anything is possible. But I’m going to side with what looks like the better team on paper. CAL 28, WSU 17.

UTAH AT UCLA (Bruins by 8): Bruins have gone pretty quickly from the surprise team of the conference to a club desperately in need of a bounce-back win. Utah, meanwhile, is staggering under the weight of an offense that in terms of yards allowed is the worst in the conference at 299.4 per game, a disappointing running game unable to prop up replacement QB Jon Hays and the passing attack. UCLA should get back on track. UCLA 31, UTAH 14.

RECORDS
LAST WEEK
STRAIGHT-UP: 5-0
AGAINST THE SPREAD: 2-3

SEASON TOTALS
STRAIGHT-UP: 35-13.
AGAINST THE SPREAD: 15-28.

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