College Football Apple Cup Betting Preview: Washington State Cougars at Washington Huskies

Washington State Cougars at Washington Huskies
Husky Stadium – Seattle, Washington

Friday, November 29, 2013, 3:30 pm Eastern, TV: Fox
Opening Line: Washington -14 1/2
Current Line: Washington -14
Opening Total: 66
Current Total: 65 (under -120)
Opening Money Line: Washington -600 / Washington State +450
Current Money Line: Washington -550 / Washington State +425

Washington is a 14 point favorite at home against Apple Cup rival Washington State Friday.
Washington is a 14 point favorite at home against Apple Cup rival Washington State Friday.

The 7-4 Washington Huskies host in-state rival the 6-5 Washington State Cougars Friday in their annual battle for the Apple Cup. Both teams are 4-4 in the Pac 12 and are already bowl eligible. The Cougars will play in a bowl for the first time since 2003. Washington leads the series 67-32-6 including 38-15-5 in Seattle. The Huskies have won 10 of the last 15 Apple Cups, but the Cougars overcame an 18 point deficit in the fourth quarter of last year’s meeting to win 31-28 in overtime.

Washington State is coached by Mike Leach. The Cougars have  road losses at Auburn 31-24, and at Oregon 62-38 along with home losses to Stanford 55-17 in Seattle, Oregon State 52-24 and Arizona State 55-21. Washington State has road wins at USC 10-7, California 44-22 and Arizona 24-17 along with home wins over Southern Utah 48-10,  Idaho 42-0 and last week against Utah 49-37. Washington State has won 2 straight games to become bowl eligible. The Cougars are 8-3 ATS and the total is 6-4-1 this season. Washington State was a 2 point favorite against Utah and the game went way over the 52 point total.

Washington State took a 21-7 first quarter lead against Utah, including two pick sixes. The Cougars would lead 33-20 going into halftime. Each team scored 10 points in the third quarter to make it 43-30 Cougars. Each team scored a touchdown in the fourth and Washington State missed a two point conversion to make the final 49-37. Utah had 481 total yards including 347 passing yards. Washington State had 578 total yards including 488 passing yards. Each team had two turnovers. The Cougars had 7 penalties for 46 yards.

Washington State is being outscored 21.6-31 this season. WSU is #93 in points allowed. The Cougars are averaging 432 total yards per game including the nation’s 5th best passing attack at 372 yards per game. The rushing game is #125 out of 125 teams at 60 yards per game. On defense Washington State is allowing 450.4 yards per game, including 268.6 passing yards and 181.7 rushing yards per game. Washington State is #105 in total offense and #112 against the pass. Despite forcing 25 turnovers this season, the Cougars are -5 in turnovers because they have 30 giveaways. Washington State is averaging 46 penalty yards per game and opponents are averaging 45. The Cougars are 80/189 on third and fourth down conversions and opponents are 71/187. The Cougars have forced 17 sacks and allowed 22 this season. Washington State is 34/44 scoring in the red zone with 27 touchdowns and opponents are 32/42 with 23 touchdowns. Washington State has 4 pick sixes and a fumble return for a touchdown this season and has allowed 4 defensive/special teams touchdowns.

Washington State quarterback Connor Halliday has completed 63.7% of his passes for 3,905 yards with 26 touchdowns and 19 interceptions. Back-up Austin Apodaca  has thrown for 187 yards with 2 touchdowns and 2 interceptions along with 7 carries for 20 yards, all in garbage time of blowouts. Running back Marcus Mason has 72 carries for 370 yards and 2 touchdowns along with 43 catches for 363 yards and 2 touchdowns. Teondray Caldwell has 45 carries, 235 yards and a touchdown, along with 23 catches for 108 yards. Jeremiah Laufasa has 34 carries, 155 yards and 7 rushing touchdowns, along with 9 catches.

Receiver Gabe Marks has 65 catches, 724 yards and 6 touchdowns. Dom Wiilams has 36 catches 612 yards and 6 touchdowns. Vince Mayle has 36 catches, 458 yards and 6 touchdowns. Kristoff Williams has 39 catches for 375 yards. River Cracraft, Rickey Galvin, and Bobby Ratliff all have at least 27 catches and two touchdown catches.  Twelve Cougars have at least 10 catches this season.

Washington is coached by Steve Sarkisian. The Huskies started off the season with four straight wins but then lost 3 straight. Washington has since won three of their last four games to become bowl eligible.  The Huskies have home wins over Boise State 38-6, Idaho State 56-0, Arizona 31-13, California 41-17 and Colorado 59-7. Washington also has road wins at Illinois 34-24 and last week at Oregon State 69-27. Washington has road losses at Stanford 31-28, Arizona State 53-24, and at UCLA 41-31, along with a home loss against Oregon 45-24. The Huskies are 6-5 ATS and the total is 6-5 this season. Washington was an 2 point underdog against Oregon State  and the total was 59.

Washington took a 48-0 lead into the fourth quarter against Oregon State. The fourth quarter was wild and featured 48 combined points. The Huskies won 69-27. Washington had an 80 yard pick six and Oregon State had a 98 yard kickoff return for a touchdown. The Huskies had 692 total yards including 530 rushing yards. The Beavers had 414 total yards including 308 passing yards. Oregon State had 4 turnovers.

Washington is outscoring teams 40-24 this season. The Huskies are #15 in scoring and #41 in points allowed nationally. Washington is #8 nationally in total offense at 524.3 yards per game, with 279.5 passing yards (#29 nationally) and 244.8 rushing yards (#15). On defense, the Huskies are allowing 386.5 yards per game including 216.3 passing and 170.3 rushing yards. The Huskies are +7 in turnovers with 20 takeaways. Washington is averaging 76 penalty yards per game and opponents are averaging 47. The Huskies are 95/188 on third and fourth down conversions, and opponents are 80/207. Washington has forced 31 sacks and allowed 28. The Huskies are 48/54 scoring in the red zone with 40 touchdowns, and opponents are 33/41 with 24 touchdowns. Washington has allowed 2 kick returns for touchdowns and has two defensive touchdowns.

Quarterback Keith Price has completed 64.8% of his passes for 2,662 yards with 19 touchdowns and 4 interceptions along with 4 rushing touchdowns. He injured his shoulder in the UCLA game, and missed the Oregon State game. Price is listed as questionable Friday against Washington State, but has been practicing. Freshman Cyler Miles took over for Keith. Miles has completed 64.3% of his passes for 412 yards with 4 touchdowns and 2 interceptions, along with 21 carries for 170 yards.

Running back Bishop Sankey has 272 carries, 1,575 yards and 17 touchdowns, along with 24 catches, 258 yards and a touchdown. Dwayne Washington has 47 carries, 332 yards and 4 touchdowns, along with a touchdown catch. Deontae Cooper has 41 catches, 267 yards and 3 touchdowns. Jesse Callier has 36 carries, 189 yards and 3 touchdowns, along with 8 catches for 52 yards.

Receiver Kevin Smith has 41 catches for 681 yards and 4 touchdowns. Jaydon Mickens has 60 catches, 679 yards and 5 touchdowns.  Kasen Williams had 29 catches for 421 yards and a touchdown. He is out for the season after suffering a gruesome broken leg and dislocated foot. Tight end Austin Seferian-Jenkins has 31 catches, 361 yards and 6 touchdowns. Joshua Perkins has only 5 catches, but 3 went for touchdowns. Two defensive backs are questionable Friday.

Washington State is 5-0 ATS in road games, 4-0 after gaining more than 450 total yards, 5-1 after allowing 450 yards or more, 4-1 in November, 3-1-1 in Friday games, 9-3 against teams with winning records, and overall, 7-3 on fieldturf, 3-13 after scoring more than 40 points. The underdog is 13-5 ATS in this series recently. Six of the last seven in Seattle in the series have gone under the total.

Washington is 9-1-1 ATS after passing for less than 170 yards, 9-2 in home games, 4-1 after a straight up win, after rushing for more than 200 yards, and allowing more than 280 passing yards, 8-2 after gaining more than 450 total yards, 6-2 in November, 21-8-1 on fieldturf, 7-3 against teams with winning road records, 5-11 after a straight up win of more than 20 points. The home team is 4-1 ATS in this series recently. The Huskies are 9-4 ATS in the last 13 against the Cougars.

This should be a high scoring affair with two explosive offenses. Even without Price and Williams, Washington put up 69 points against Oregon State last week. I think 14 points is a little much in this rivalry, but Washington wins at home.

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