Another game, another fairly big matchup, for one team anyway. The PAC 12 is so closely contended that every game is pretty big. The conference is still up for grabs. It was looking like it was Utah’s, but after a humiliating loss to USC, a lot of other teams are back on the table. None of which includes Arizona, who have turned into an absolute dumpster fire of a team. Rich Rod is doing big things there in Tucson, no not so much. His last employer, the University of Michigan, is looking up with Harbaugh, while Rich Rod is left to turn the Wildcats into the ground. Plenty of offense on that team, but like at Michigan, no defense. Their in-state rivals, Arizona State, haven’t had much better success. However, they have shown up occasionally. The Sun Devils’ biggest win came against UCLA, a 38-23 thrashing. But then you look at their games against USC and Utah and wonder if it’s the same team on the field. Arizona State dominated UCLA from beginning to end on offense and defense. Last week they lost a really hard one to Oregon in overtime, so it has been a tough season for the Sun Devils.
Washington State was a field goal away last week from taking the division away from Stanford. The 43-yard field goal sailed wide and Washington State lost the contest 30-28 to Stanford. For a team that depends on the passing game, it was quite the effort all night in the rain for Washington State. Stanford runs and pounds the ball, so given the conditions one could come to the conclusion that the Cardinal had a sizable advantage heading into the game. Washington State outplayed Stanford for the majority of the game, but it just wasn’t enough. The Cougars kicker was perfect up to that point. He couldn’t make the kick when it counted, though. If Washington State won, it would have made them victorious over Stanford, Oregon, and Arizona. Still an impressive season nonetheless is unfolding in Pullman. Mike Leach finally has himself a team since the Texas Tech days.
The story of the day in this game is about head coach of Arizona State, Todd Graham. He was accused of stealing signals on opposing sidelines and he came out and admitted to stealing offensive signals. Utah combatted it by having to huddle, Oregon combatted it by blocking the sideline with giant white cards. What will Mike Leach do? Hell is going to freeze over before his offense huddles, so we’ll see if they do anything to counteract it.
Arizona State Sun Devils vs. Washington State Cougars College Football
Arizona State +2.5(-110)
@Washington State -2.5(-110)
Odds provided by Bovada.lv
Arizona State vs. Washington State Pick:
The Washington State offense was slowed down last week due to the rain. They are designed to go fast an air the football out, so any variable like the weather acting up can impact them pretty significantly. However, they made it work against a pretty good pass defense in the rain last week. There doesn’t appear to be any rain in the forecast, so the offense should find it easier this week. They are also playing an Arizona State defense who allow 259.5 passing yards per game. Washington State is passing for a staggering 407.4 yards per game, along with 35.4 points scored. Arizona State is pretty good against the run, but the Cougars never run it so that eliminates one thing altogether. Arizona State loves to blitz, they blitz almost every play. I think the Washington State offensive coordinator simplifies things and gets the ball out of Luke Falk’s hands quickly. They love to play screens too, which can pop for big plays against blitzes.
Washington State is still giving up 30.9 points a game. The defense has improved, but it’s well known that a Mike Leach team is all about scoring points and offense. Arizona State is averaging 32.5 points per game. I see them around the 35 point range in this game. They are a good ground team which looks good against a poor rush defense like the Cougars. I think this total is a little low. I was thinking 71 or 72 so I am going to gladly hop on the 66.
PICK: OVER 66 POINTS (-110)