Oregon State Beavers (2-2, 2-2-1 ATS) at No. 11 Arizona Wildcats (4-0, 3-1 ATS), Week 6 College Football, Saturday October 9, 6:00 PM E Eastern, Arizona Stadium (Natural Grass), Tucson Arizona
By Jeff Hochman of JHSportsline.com
Betting Odds: OSU +9/AZ -9
Over/Under Total: 50
The Beavers of Oregon State travel to the desert for a Saturday night Pac-10 showdown against the surging Arizona Wildcats. This matchup looks like a mismatch on paper as Arizona has the better offense, defense, and special teams. That’s why they play the game!
Oregon State defeated Arizona State in their most recent game. Ryan Katz hit 19-of-29 passes for 260 yards and two more touchdowns in their 31-28 victory. The 3-point spread landed right on the Vegas number. Katz has now passed for seven touchdowns with zero interceptions so far this season. Jacquizz Rodgers ran for 145 yards and added two scores, as he helped Oregon State reach the .500 mark for the second time this year.
Arizona defeated the California Bears 10-9, as 6-point home favorites two weeks ago on September 25th. The Wildcats out-gained California 311-262, despite committing 10 penalties for 100 yards. Nick Foles was 25-of-39 for 212 yards with one touchdown, and is now completing a whopping 74.5% of his passes.
It’s no fluke wjere both ofthese teams are in the standings after week five on the College Football Season. Oregon State is rather fortunate to be 2-2 as they have been out-gained in three out of their four games this season. They only managed to out-gain Arizona State by 52 yards last week. Dating back to last season, the Beavers are just 1-5 ITS (in the stats) in their last six contests. They have played a brutal schedule so far with road losses at TCU and Boise State, but did manage to cover the spread in both games.
Arizona has out-gained all four opponents in their 4-0 undeafeated start. That’s the sign of a great football team and the Wildcats have a lot of talent on both sides of the ball. Nick Foles has thrown for 1,089 yards and six touchdowns. He has a plethora of skilled receivers in Juron Criner, David Douglas, William Wright, and David Roberts.
The Beavers are very weak at defending the pass, and they must find a way to get some pressure on Nick Foles. They are allowing 295 passing yards on the road and have been getting burned by screen passes and double moves. Oregon State has a pretty good pass rush as they are ranked No. 3 in Pac-10 Sacks. However, I think this is one of the worse pass defenses that Oregon State has had in a very long time.
The Wildcats have been an offensive force through the air this season, passing for over 300 yards per game. They also can pound you on the ground with Nic Grigsby, Keola Antolin, and Greg Nwoko. The trio are averaging 121 yards per game this season, while rotating in-and-out. On the flip side, the Beavers are averaging just 78 yards rushing on the road, but the Wildcats are allowing 5.3 yards per rush in the desert.The good news, they have two weeks to prepare for this game in an efforttotighten uptheir run defense.
Last year, Arizona defeated the Beavers 37-32, as 2.5-point road underdogs. The Beavers lost the game despite not kicking any Punts. That victory halted Oregon State’s streak of three consecutive wins over the Wildcats. Nick Foles abused the Beavers’ pass defense throwing for 254 yards with three touchdowns. I would expect more of the same today as the Beavers’ secondary looks worse off than last season. Gettingpressure on Foles will be a key factor for theBeavers in this game!
The Wildcats are 11-25 ATS when favored by 3.5 to 10 points, but they are 19-10 SU and 18-11 ATSwhen playing with two weeks of rest. The Beavers are 9-3 ATS when playing a team with a winning record. This should be a great gameso enjoy all the action.
Jeff’s Pick to Cover the Point Spread: Oregon State +9& Over 50
Oregon State is 9-2 ATS in their last 11 meetings and the Wildcats have not defeated the Beavers in back-to-back seasons this decade. Oregon State has never gotten this many points when playing the Wildcats. Arizona has had a habit of committing costly turnovers in year’s past, but this season they have been much better at protecting the rock in the red zone. I lean to the Underdog and the Over.