Pac-12 Rivalry, Odds: Washington Huskies at Washington State Cougars

Connor Halliday has continued to excel, but Washington State's defense hasn't.
Connor Halliday has continued to excel, but Washington State’s defense hasn’t.

Wash-Wash St
Time: 9:30 PM CST
Spread: WAS -3
M/L: WAS -160; WAST +140
Total: 64

Betting odds c/o Bovada

The Washington Huskies have dropped two of its past three contests, but won last week 37-13 over Oregon State. The Huskies will look to improve to 4-5 in Pac-12 play this week facing Washington State in a game college football oddsmakers have set the line 3-points in favor of the Huskies.

Washington has been remarkably mediocre this season, strikingly so, in fact. The Huskies average 30.8 points per game and allow 25.3 per contest. The offense is predicated upon a strong rush attack (195.9 yards per game), but the pass game is lingering far behind, ranking 102nd in the nation in yardage per game (190.3).

In the backfield, the Huskies have a trio of effective options: Lavon Coleman, Dwayne Washington and Shaq Thompson have combined to rush over 1,500 yards on the season, with 10 TDs between them, seven of which have come from Washington. The Huskies have rushed 20 TDs this season while having accumulated 16 receiving TDs.

Jayden Mickens and John Ross are the top two WRs, though Ross has caught just 17 passes all year (at a 21.8 yard per attempt average). DiAndre Campbell is second on the team in total receptions, but he has just 231 yards due to averaging just 9.6 yards per catch.

Washington also benefits from having a very strong kicker. Cameron Van Winkle has hit 97.6 percent of his extra points and 19-of-22 field goals, with two of his three misses having come from 40 to 49 yards (where he is 4-of-6).

Washington State has dropped five of its past six contests and fell last week to then-No. 13 Arizona State. The Cougars have been woeful defensively all season, allowing 39.3 points per game, among the worst of all NCAA D-1 schools.

Offensively, the team has been nearly good enough to overcome this, averaging 33.5 points per game. The pass offense ranks 1st in the nation in yardage (488.8 per game), but the rush is nearly non-existent (41.5 yards per game!).

Senior QB Connor Halliday was putting the finishing marks on a strong NCAA career, well, at least two seasons worth. Last year he threw for 4,597 yards and while he isn’t on pace to eclipse that, he’s improved his completion ratio to 67.3 percent this year (up from 62.9 a season ago) while having halved his interceptions (22 last year, just 11 thus far this season). His passer rating was 145.0 and he’d been an awesome enough QB to propel an otherwise lackluster offense to potency.  He’s out the remainder of the season with a broken leg.

Backup Luke Falk threw for 601 yards last week, so maybe it won’t matter much, and it isn’t as though this team was bowl-bound anyway.

Plus, that defense…

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