Week Eight Pac 12 College Football Picks: Oregon Ducks at Arizona State Sun Devils
#3 Oregon Ducks at Arizona State Sun Devils
Thursday, October 18, 2012, 9:00 pm Eastern, TV: ESPN
Sun Devil Stadium – Tempe, Arizona
Opening Line: Oregon -10 1/2
Current Line: Oregon -8
Opening Total: 66
Current Total: 68
Opening Money Line: Oregon -350 / ASU +290
Current Money Line: Oregon -300 / ASU +250
Both Oregon and Arizona St are currently in first place in their respective divisions in the Pac 12, and could meet in the Pac 12 Championship game in late November. Of course, Oregon St and USC might have something to say about that. But first things first, Oregon travels to Arizona St in a crucial Pac 12 showdown Thursday night. This is the 33rd meeting between the schools, and the series is tied 16-16. Oregon won last year in Eugene 41-27. Oregon has won 7 straight games in the series, including the last 4 in Tempe.
Oregon is 6-0 this season and 3-0 in Pac 12 play under coach Chip Kelly. Despite being #2 in both the AP and USA Today Coaches’ polls, Duck fans were upset when they were #3 in the initial BCS standings that came out Sunday, behind Alabama and Florida. The Ducks have won every game by at least 17 points. they have home wins over Arkansas St 57-34, Fresno St 42-25, Tennessee Tech 63-14, Arizona 49-0, and last week against Washington 52-21, along with a 51-26 win against Washington St in Seattle. The Ducks are 2-4 ATS and the total is 3-2 this season. Oregon has been at least a 20 point favorite in every game including last week against Washington when the Ducks were favored by 24.5 points and the total was 62.5.
Oregon is averaging 541.7 yards per game, including 239.3 passing yards and 302.3 rushing yards per game. The Ducks are #8 in total offense and #4 in rushing nationally. Oregon is outscoring teams 52.3-20 this season. The Ducks are #2 in scoring. Oregon is +3 in turnovers, but the Ducks do have 14 turnovers this season. Oregon is averaging 73.7 penalty yards per game . The Ducks have allowed 8 sacks. Oregon is 56/107 on third and fourth down conversions and 31/35 scoring in the red zone with 27 touchdowns. On defense, Oregon is allowing 359.8 yards per game including 233 passing yards and 126.8 rushing yards. The Ducks have 17 sacks this season. Oregon opponents are 31/109 on third and fourth down conversions, and 15/26 scoring in the red zone with 9 touchdowns. The Ducks have returned 4 interceptions for touchdowns this season.
Oregon quarterback Marcus Mariota has completed 114 of 168 passes (67.9%) with 15 touchdowns and 5 interceptions. Mariota has also rushed 43 times for 221 yards with a touchdown. He has been sacked 8 times. Running back Kenjon Barner has 116 carries for 727 yards and 9 touchdowns, along with 11 catches, 111 yards, and a touchdown. De’Anthony Thomas has 41 carries, 377 yards and 6 touchdowns. He is also the leading receiver for the Ducks with 20 catches, 205 yards and 3 touchdowns. He also returns kicks and punts, and has 820 all-purpose yards. Byron Marshall has 48 carries, 258 yards, and 3 touchdowns. Receiver Bralon Addison has 16 catches, 196 yards, and a touchdown. Tight end Colt Lyerla has 12 catches, 189 yards, and 4 touchdowns. Keanon Lowe has 13 catches, 133 yards, and 2 touchdowns. Aside from the running backs, Dwayne Stanford , Daryle Hawkins, and Josh Huff will also get a lot of targets.
Arizona St is 5-1 this season and 3-0 in the Pac 12 under first year coach Todd Graham. The Sun Devils were not in the top 25 in the BCS standings, but they are #24 in the coaches’ poll. The only loss for ASU came at Missouri 24-20. The Sun Devils have home wins over Northern Arizona 63-6, Illinois 45-14, and Utah 37-7, along with road wins over California 27-17, and 51-17 at Colorado last week. Arizona St is 5-1 ATS and the total is 2-3 this season. The Sun Devils were 22 point favorites at Colorado last week and the total was 55.5.
Arizona St is averaging 479 yards per game including 291.2 passing yards and 187.8 rushing yards. The Sun Devils are outscoring opponents 40.5-14.2 this season. ASU is 26th or better nationally in total offense, passing, and scoring. The Sun Devils are +3 in turnovers. ASU has allowed 14 sacks. The Sun Devils are 39/88 on third and fourth down conversions and 29/37 scoring in the red zone with 24 touchdowns. On defense, Arizona St is allowing 272.7 yards per game including 144.2 passing yards and 128.5 rushing yards. The Sun Devils are in the top ten nationally in total defense, against the pass, and in scoring defense. They have forced 26 sacks this season. Sun Devil opponents are 37/108 on third and fourth down conversions, and 12/16 scoring in the red zone with 10 touchdowns.
ASU quarterback Taylor Kelly has completed 112 of 164 passes (68.3%) for 1,600 yards with 14 touchdowns and 2 interceptions, along with 57 carries for 210 yards. Kelly has been sacked 11 times this season. Running back D.J. Foster has 45 carries, 269 yards and 2 touchdowns, along with 20 catches, 297 yards, and 2 touchdowns. Cameron Marshall has 62 carries, 262 yards and 5 touchdowns, along with 8 catches, 69 yards, and a touchdown. Marion Grice has 37 carries, 206 yards, and 5 touchdowns, along with 13 catches, 189 yards, and 4 touchdowns. Back-up quarterback Michael Eubank has 32 carries, 96 yards and 2 touchdowns. He has also thrown 2 touchdowns this season. Receiver Chris Coyle has 28 catches, 386 yards, and 2 touchdowns. Rashad Ross has 16 catches, 260 yards, and a touchdown. Kevin Ozier has 15 catches, 211 yards and 3 touchdowns.
Oregon has won 9 straight Pac 12 games, scoring at least 40 points in each game. The Ducks are 4-0 ATS on grass, 4-1 in road games, 22-7-1 in road games, 11-5 after allowing less than 170 passing yards, 2-5 in Thursday games, 2-5-1 after a straight up win of 20 points or more, 1-3-1 after a cover, and 0-4 after allowing 200 rushing yards or more. The Ducks are 5-1-1 ATS recently against Arizona St. The favorite is 3-1-1 ATS in this series in the last five meetings. The last 4 in the series have gone over the total, and the over is also 4-1-1 in the last six in Tempe.
Arizona St has lost 17 straight games to top 10 teams. The Sun Devils are 3-0-1 ATS at home against teams with winning road records, and in October, 5-0 on grass, 5-1 overall, after allowing less than 275 total yards, 4-1-1 after gaining more than 450 total yards, 13-6-3 in Pac 12 games, 13-6-1 at home, 1-4 after scoring more than 40 points and rushing for 200 yards or more. The home team is 3-1-1 ATS in this series.
The main reason Florida passed Oregon in the BCS standings was because the Gators have a much tougher strength of schedule. That will change as Oregon has games against ranked teams USC, Stanford, and Oregon St in the second half of the season, along with this game against Arizona St. I think Oregon will try to impress the voters in a nationally televised showcase, and run up a lot of points against a very good if not great Arizona St team. The Sun Devils have a top ten defense, but they haven’t played anyone with the prolific offense of Oregon. I like Oregon to win by double digits with a lot of points scored by both teams.
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