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USC Trojans vs. Arizona State Sun Devils Predictions, Picks, Odds, and NCAA Football Betting Preview – September 26, 2015

USC Trojans vs. Arizona State Sun Devils Predictions, Picks, Odds, and NCAA Football Betting Preview – September 26, 2015

It’s been an intense season of college football so far, and things are about to get cranked up to another level when the No. 19 USC Trojans visit the Arizona State Sun Devils for a critical Pac-12 matchup.

USC just failed in its first true conference test this past Saturday when it lost to Stanford, making this weekend’s clash against the surging Sun Devils all the more pivotal. Can the Trojans come away with a big road win over their South Division rivals?

Read on as we get deeper into this upcoming matchup between two West Coast heavyweights. And why not check out what’s going on in SoCal over in the NFL? Check out our preview for the San Diego Chargers’ game against the Minnesota Vikings here right after this.

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USC Trojans vs. Arizona State Sun Devils Preview

Where: Sun Devil Stadium, Tempe

When: Saturday, September 26, 10:30 PM ET

Line: USC Trojans vs. Arizona State Sun Devils view all NCAA Football lines

Betting on the USC Trojans

Where did the No. 19 USC Trojans’ defense go?

[sc:NCAA240banner ]A 41-31 thrashing by the Stanford Cardinal does not bode well for the Trojans early into this season. While their offense has no problems putting up points yet, the team’s D suddenly unraveled for the worse. USC’s defense gave up 474 total yards to the Cardinal this past Saturday after outscoring a pair of FCS teams 114-15 in the team’s first two games of the season.

While the Trojans aren’t giving up as many points to the opposition, they are, however, surrendering a ton of yardage instead, allowing opponents to rack up almost 400 yards per game this season. As such, star quarterback Cody Kessler must continue to carry his team to victory on the offensive side of the ball.

The good news for USC is that Kessler showed no signs of slowing down on his end by going 25-of-32 for 272 passing yards and three touchdowns against Stanford. Connecting with wideout JuJu Smith-Schuster (eight receptions for 153 yards and a TD) still proved to be potent as well, which should keep the Trojans’ offense well-oiled in the showdown with Arizona State.

USC’s offense needs to be at its best against the Sun Devils if it wants to get back into the pundits’ good graces, especially since the team plummeted from being the sixth-best school in the nation to 19th after the loss to Stanford. And while the Trojans have won seven of their last ten games against Arizona State, they have only won once (in 2012) over the last four seasons.

Betting on the Arizona State Sun Devils

Sun Devils Richard

The 38-17 loss to Texas A&M in the season opener now seems to be a distant memory for the Arizona State Sun Devils, who fell out of the AP Top 25 from being ranked No. 15 overall in the preseason after that Week 1 defeat. The team made quick work of the New Mexico Lobos this past Saturday, 34-10, making it 19 consecutive wins for the Sun Devils over the Lobos, and counting.

Mike Bercovici put together another all-around effort, finishing the game with 317 yards in the air to go with three touchdowns on 22-of-37 passing. The senior play-caller got a lot of help from Demario Richard, who had 151 receiving yards – a new school record for a running back – against New Mexico. Richard even rumbled for a 93-yard rushing touchdown to finish with 104 yards on the ground as well.

With momentum now back on their side after dealing with a couple of FCS teams like they should have, the Sun Devils and their defense must remain tenacious going up against a superb Trojans offense. Furthermore, a win over SoCal will get their conference record for the season off to a good start, especially with four of Arizona State’s next five games slated to be against Pac-12 teams.

Furthermore, if there’s a team in the Pac-12 that could contain USC’s Cody Kessler right now, it would likely be Arizona State. The team is currently ninth in the nation in passing defense, surrendering just 134.7 yards in the air per game. However, the Sun Devils have got to be wary about their run D (99th in the nation). The team’s front line gave up 284 rushing yards to the Cal Poly Mustangs in Week 2, followed by 184 yards from the Lobos this past weekend, including a 65-yard touchdown run by New Mexico’s Tyrone Owens.

Still, you have to love the team’s chances this coming weekend against the Trojans. Arizona State has won its last seven contests in Sun Devil Stadium.

Writer’s Prediction

The Sun Devils prevail over USC, 37-31, and make their way back into the AP Top 25 in the process.

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Written by Mark

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