After another steady, 3-2 record picking against the spread last week, it’s time to take on a full slate of Pac-12 games as the season churns into its final third.
All lines are courtesy of VegasInsider.com, and are for entertainment purposes only, blah blah blah, etc. etc. And as always, our pick for the Washington game will come in a separate post on Friday.
Last week: 2-3 straight-up, 3-2 against the spread
Season: 43-18 straight-up, 32-20-1 against the spread
Oregon at Arizona State, 7:30 p.m., ESPN (ASU by 3) -- Given a week off to heal up even more, you have to think Ducks quarterback Vernon Adams will be even better than he was two weeks ago against the Huskies. And even though we’re in Week 9, I’m still not really sure what to make of the Sun Devils. This feels like the kind of game in which Oregon reminds everyone that it still has a bunch of really fast, really talented offensive skill players. More than ASU, anyway. The pick: Oregon 38, Arizona State 35.
USC at California, 12 p.m., FOX (USC by 6) -- Turns out there was a reason the Trojans were favored last week against Utah: they can still play. I can see this game going either way, because USC’s defense hasn’t been all that great this season and Jared Goff is still, after all, Jared Goff. But he’s been struggling, and so has Cal. I like USC to win another one. The pick: USC 31, California 24
Colorado at UCLA, 12 p.m., Pac-12 Networks (UCLA by 21) – The only tricky part of this pick is the point spread, but after watching what the Bruins did to California last week, I trust that they can take care of the Buffaloes. Maybe UCLA quarterback Josh Rosen will use this game as an outlet to release all of the pent-up rage that surely accumulated following the forced removal of that hot tub from his dorm room. The pick: UCLA 41, Colorado 14.
Oregon State at Utah, 4 p.m., Pac-12 Networks (Utah by 24) -- The only tricky part of this pick is ... well, you know. Utah just needs to give the ball to Deontae Booker, watch him run over the hapless Beavers, then prepare for next week’s trip to Washington. The pick: Utah 35, Oregon State 10.
Stanford at Washington State, 7:30 p.m., ESPN (Stanford by 11.5) – So I think the Cougars are more than good enough to score about four touchdowns or so against the Cardinal. Stanford is solid defensively, but not spectacular, and it probably needs to be closer to spectacular to hold Luke Falk and this offense below 28 points or so. But I think that monstrous offensive line and Christian McCaffrey will keep doing what they do, and ultimately pull away in a game that will be close going into the fourth quarter. The pick: Stanford 42, Washington State 31.
Christian Caple can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Twitter: @ChristianCaple