Note: For the 2012 Week 8
Thursday night game between these two teams, please go here: Oregon
Ducks vs. Arizona St. Sun Devils Pick
Oregon Ducks (3-0, 3-0 ATS) vs. Arizona State Sun Devils (2-1, 2-1 ATS), Week 4 College Football, Sun Devil Stadium, (Natural Grass) Tempe Arizona, Saturday, September 25th, 2010, 10:30 PM Eastern
By Jeff Hochman of JHSportsline.com
Betting Odds: UO -10.5/Az St +10.5
Over/Under Total: 53
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The 6th-ranked Oregon Ducks travel to Tempe, Arizona to play the Sun Devils on Saturday night in a Pac-10 Conference showdown. The odds-makers opening line of 10.5 and 53 has held steady.
Last week, Oregon laid the wood to Portland State 69-0 as whopping54-point favorites. Darron Thomas completed 9-of-18 passes for 140 yards and LaMichael James posted a career-high 227 yards on 14 carries for the Ducks. The game was over before it even started as Oregon continued their home domination with three touchdowns in the opening quarter. LaMicahel James broke free for a 66-yard touchdown run, Darron Thomas hit Jeff Maehl on a 47-yard scoring pass, before the two connected again on a seven-yard TD all within the first 15 minutes.
Arizona State had a great chance of upsetting the Badgers before losing 20-19 as 11.5-point underdogs last Saturday. Steven Threet went for 211 yards on 21-of-33 completions for the Sun Devils, who began the season with easy wins over Portland State and Northern Arizona by a combined score of 95-29. Kerry Taylor posted 71 yards on six receptions and Deantre Lewis gained 122 yards on nine carries. Cameron Marshall ran for 35 yards and a touchdown that got the Sun Devils within one point, but Thomas Weber’s extra point was blocked, ultimately ending the game.
The Ducks are 8-2 straight up in their last ten games, including six of seven. On the flip side, Arizona State has gone 3-7 in their last ten games. The last time Arizona State won back-to-back games they went on to lose their next six games in a row. They already are 0-1 since winning back-to-back games for the first since October of last season.
Oregon cruised to victory last week by setting a school record with 528 yards on the ground. Arizona State has been “stout” against the run at home only allowing 61.7 yards per game, albeit against inferior competition. The Sun Devils have a very shaky secondary, allowing 305 yards per game so far this season. Oregon will attack through the air early and often to see if the Sun Devils’ pass defense can hold up. The Ducks are averaging 380 yards on the ground in three games, but look for the Sun Devils to focus on stopping the run early with an extra man in the box.
Oregon has won and covered five straight games against the Sun Devils. Last season, saw the Ducks win at home 44-21, as 21-point favorites. Oregon out-gained Arizona 388-211, despite the Sun Devils holding the ball for 13 more minutes than the Ducks. LaMichael James ran for 150 yards, on just 22 carries and added three touchdowns, as the Ducks racked up 268 rushing yards to just 86 for the Sun Devils. Arizona State knows who and what they need to focus on if they want any chance to win or be competitive in this game. I just don’t think they have the personnel on defense to get the job done against a skilled offensive team.
Steven Threet has completed 66% of his passes for 847 yards so far this season. He’s my X factor for the Sun Devils in this game. If he has time to throw I can see the Sun Devils being able to score some points in this game. The 6-5, 240 pound Junior has a strong arm but can be a bit wild at times. Enjoy the game!
Jeff’s Pick to Cover the Point Spread: University of Oregon -10.5
I went against Oregon when they played Tennessee two weeks and learned my lesson. While the game was close in the first half, I never got the sense that Oregon was not going to win and cover. I watched film on both teams and I believe this line should be closer to 14 points. Look for more of the same from last year’s game. LaMichael James is even better this season and so is Oregon’s passing attack. They will be tough to stop on offense in this game. Hopefully, their defense will come up with some key stops, allowing the Ducks to cover 10.5 points. Not a strong pick, but I would lean to U of O in this match-up.