I sit before you a broken man.
After mostly positive performances picking games against the spread this season, last week yielded a different result. USC’s blowout victory over Arizona marked the only cover I correctly predicted, and thus a 1-4 record was posted.
But the sun still appeared in the sky on Sunday morning, and I’m back this week to atone for that disastrous showing. All lines are courtesy of the AP wire, and are for entertainment purposes only. And as always, my pick for the Huskies game will come in a separate post on Friday.
Last week: 4-1 straight-up, 1-4 against the spread.
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Season: 47-9 straight-up, 24-23-2 against the spread.
Oregon at California, 7:30 p.m., ESPN (Cal by 3) -- Speaking of shame, which of these programs is feeling worse about itself right now? Oregon is riding a four-game losing streak and just gave up 70 points at home to Washington. California lost to Oregon State the last time it took the field. OK, so Oregon is probably feeling worse. And here’s a guess they won’t feel any better after this battle of two porous defenses. The pick: California 65, Oregon 59.
Colorado at Stanford, 12 p.m., Pac-12 Networks (Stanford by 1.5) -- Take the Buffaloes and the points all day. Stanford redeemed itself somewhat with last week’s comeback victory at Notre Dame, and the Cardinal are healthier in their secondary than they were in blowout losses to Washington and Washington State. But Stanford’s offense is still slow and inefficient, and they’ll face a Colorado defense that ranks 15th nationally in yards per play allowed. The pick: Colorado 28, Stanford 17.
Utah at UCLA, 1 p.m., FOX (UCLA by 7) -- Another wacky point spread. Is there anyone who watched UCLA play football the last two weeks who believes the Bruins can cover an entire touchdown against a 6-1 Pac-12 team, even at home? Starting quarterback Josh Rosen is a game-time decision, Jim Mora says, though I don’t know if the Bruins are a touchdown better than the Utes even if Rosen is healthy. Utah didn’t look great last week, either, and the Utes should have a hard time moving the ball against the Bruins’ secondary. But I still feel confident about a Utah cover. The pick: UCLA 20, Utah 17.
Washington State at Arizona State, 7 p.m., Pac-12 Networks (WSU by 7.5) -- The Huskies aren’t the only Pacific Northwest team that struggles to win in Tempe -- WSU hasn’t won there since 2001, either. But that will only be true for another two days. And while it’s a little weird to see WSU favored by more than a touchdown in the desert against a 5-2 ASU team, I think the Cougars will cover, too. The pick: Washington State 42, Arizona State 31.