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Pac-12 Week 1 Predictions, Odds and Preview
Thursday, September 1
Also, the Utes will likely lean as well on their sophomore linebacker Cody Barton to lead their defense, which ranked sixth in the country in rushing yards allowed per game (108.6) in 2015.
However, the Thunderbirds do have their top rusher in Malik Brown back this year. Last season, he rumbled for 885 yards and scored eight times. His presence alone should help the team cause some problems for the Utah D.
Writer’s Prediction: Utes win, 40-19.
Friday, September 2
To no one’s surprise, all the attention is bound to be on Stanford’s Christian McCaffrey here. He compiled 3,903 all-purpose yards last season and is expected to better or at least replicate those numbers in 2016 especially with quarterback Kevin Hogan gone. McCaffrey, if it still wasn’t obvious, is also one of the leading favorites (+450) for this year’s Heisman Trophy.
With a new man behind center—Ryan Burns—calling the shots, the Cardinal’s passing game could decline this season. But this Friday’s game with Kansas State, will be a good chance for Burns to negate that possibility and solidify his role as the starter. After all, the Wildcats, who yielded 31.5 points per game and were among the worst in the nation in pass defense, aren’t exactly a tough team throw against.
Whatever the case though, this game is where we’re all guaranteed to see a dominant showing from McCaffery. Sure, the Kansas State defense, which features a number of key veterans up front, should hinder him slightly, but his power, unwavering speed and athleticism may prove to be too much down the stretch.
Writer’s Prediction: Stanford (-15.5) wins it, 27-16.
Saturday, September 3
You can look forward to a down-to-the-wire finish between these two power conference programs. The Bruins are hoping to receive a big day from their quarterback in Josh Rosen, who performed spectacularly as a freshman last season. He could be in for a tough time with Texas A&M’s All-SEC defensive end Myles Garrett pressuring him constantly, but UCLA should be able to capitalize on the ground against an Aggies team that has consistently failed to stop the run in the past few seasons.
Speaking of the Aggies, their own quarterback in Trevor Knight is aiming to deliver a strong impression in his very first game with his new club. He’ll have the luxury of engineering an offense with one of the best wide receivers in the country—Christian Kirk—as his best target. Kirk’s presence will surely make things significantly easier for the Oklahoma transfer.
Writer’s Prediction: Texas A&M (-3) wins it, 30-24.
Complete Odds and Schedule for Pac-12 Week 1
|September 1||Southern Utah vs Utah||—|
|Oregon State (+13) vs Minnesota (-13)||55.5|
|September 2||Colorado State (+8) vs Colorado (-8)||57.0|
|Kansas State (+15.5) vs Stanford (-15.5)||48.5|
|September 3||Rutgers (+26.5) vs Washington (-26.5)||55.5|
|UCLA (+3) vs Texas A&M (-3)||53.5|
|UC Davis vs Oregon||—|
|USC (+11.5) vs Alabama (-11.5)||53.5|
|Eastern Washington vs Washington State||—|
|BYU (+1) vs Arizona (-1)||61.0|
|Northern Arizona vs Arizona State||—|
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