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With college football playoff implications at stake, #6 ranked Oregon visits Pac-12 rival Arizona State Saturday.
This weekend’s contest tells a story of teams heading in opposite directions. Following a fast 5-1 start, complete with national ranking, ASU’s fortunes have since dropped as the Sun Devils stare down a four-game losing streak.
Meanwhile, after dropping a pivotal season-opener vs. Auburn where Bo Nix made his auspicious debut, Oregon has ripped nine-consecutive wins. The Ducks sit atop the PAC-12 and claim wins vs. an array of teams at or above .500
Will Oregon keep its post-Tigers record clean to move into prime position if any higher ranked teams slip? Or, can ASU author one more big game and become bowl eligible for a third-consecutive year?
Oregon enters as -14.5 point favorites and are 3-0 SU in road games this year. Meanwhile ASU is 3-2 at home, last beating Washington State Oct. 12 from Tempe.
Oregon seeks first double-digit win total since 2014As Mario Cristobal's system and recruits mature, Oregon looks to eclipse its 2018 win total this week. Behind the nation's #14 offense (37.8 ppg) and #10 defense (14.8 ppg) the Ducks are ready to assume serious national playoff considerations if any of the top four CFP slip. Senior quarterback Justin Herbert is enjoying his best performances with a touchdown-interception ratio of 28-3 and 2,662 passing yards. A sure-fire NFL draft pick this summer, Herbert's poise makes the Ducks go. Tailback CJ Verdell's 814 yards and five touchdowns provide pass-happy Oregon with just enough ground threat to keep defenses honest. This weekend, both will need strong road outings to ensure ten wins in 2019.
Last week, Herbert again shined completing 20 of 28 and tossing four touchdowns vs. outgunned Arizona. Cyrus Habibi-Likio's goal line score polished Oregon's 34-6 win opposite a stranded Wildcats group. With two games remaining on their ledger, the Ducks control their destiny heading into the Pac-12 Championship game. And as the spread sits -14 Oregon's way, as the season unfolds, another convincing win would only enhance their contender status.
The Ducks average 460.4 ypg and allow 306.1. Oregon's passing attack accounts for 280.6 ypg as they add 179.8 yards rushing.
ASU grabs for bowl-eligibility Sat. from homeArizona State has faded since Oct. 19's 21-3 setback vs. Utah. Losing their last three by ten-points-or-less, Saturday ASU fell 35-34 vs. Oregon State. The Sun Devils' defense couldn't foil Jake Luton's 26 of 35, four-touchdown afternoon. Beavers running back Jermar Jefferson offered a decisive touchdown scamper on another hard-luck day for ASU football. In defeat, Freshman Jayden Daniels tallied 24 of 36 completions for 334 yards and three touchdowns. Eno Benjamin's 70 yard, one-touchdown display paced ASU's anemic 74 yard rushing total.
With Arizona State's two season bowl-game run in jeopardy, Herm Edwards needs more from his #95 ranked offense (24.7 ppg). Daniels' end-zone success rate will also need to match his 61.4 completion percentage and 14-2 touchdown/interception ratio. After amassing 1,080 yards from scrimmage and 10 touchdowns, Benjamin's ground presence is vital for the Sun Devils to sidestep repeated setbacks and become bowl eligible. Defensively, Arizona holds opponents to 23.5 ppg -which ranks #40 FBS.
- Sun Devils are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 home games vs. a team with a winning road record.
Trends courtesy of Covers.com
- Ducks are 5-13 ATS in their last 18 games following an ATS win.
- Ducks are 4-11-1 ATS in their last 16 games after accumulating more than 280 yards passing in their previous game.
- Ducks are 2-6 ATS in their last 8 games after allowing less than 275 total yards in their previous game.
- Ducks are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games after allowing less than 170 yards passing in their previous game.
The Bottom Line What to bet on this game.
Full-Game Side Bet
Offensively struggling, but efficient defensively, I'll take ASU to cover today's spread from home. As mentioned, the Sun Devil's last three opponents haven't surpassed ten-point victories vs. Herm Edwards' attuned ball stoppers. I believe the veteran coach Edwards can motivate his men enough to remain stride-for-stride with Oregon. Meanwhile, Oregon will cash its tenth SU victory this weekend, but fall a few points shy of the -14.5 total. Further, the Sun Devils are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 home games vs. a team with a winning road record.
Full-Game Total Pick
Conference competition, especially as the season moves toward an end, generally brings the hardest hits and stiffest action after a season of physicality. Today's contest will become defensively oriented. Expect a clean effort from both squads while the Under 54 remains in play as ASU begins the penultimate leg of its final 2019 home stand. These trends from Covers.com support the Under. Under is 5-2 in Sun Devils last 7 games following a ATS loss. Under is 7-1 in Ducks last 8 games on grass.