It's time to announce our picks for the Pac-12 games happening this Saturday. All twelve teams are in action, and there's potential for a huge shift in the Pac-12 South as USC and UCLA can tie Utah with wins and a loss by the Utes. If everything goes the way of Vegas, that's what will happen. Also in the North, Oregon tries to stay alive but they have to handle Jared Goff and our Cal Bears. And can Stanford finally lose a conference game? It's unlikely, but Colorado came close last week...
FIRST, let's look at last week's results. We have ourselves a shakeup!
Perry takes the lead with a 14 point weekend! Helped that only he had Oregon State covering. Nik/I vaults from last to 4th with an eleven point week and while Nam still had a solid week, he falls to second.
Although USC had moved to a 5.5 point favorite before the game, when we did the picks USC was a 6 point favorite. So we have a push with the Cal game. Washington State and Colorado were so close to upsets, as were a few teams across the country that I had listed in the Upset of the Week but alas, every favorite won.
We unfortunately had a few stinkers this week at the bottom of the pack, widening the gap between first and last place in our league. Can we bring it closer this week?
Let's begin... All games are on Saturday. The lines are from Wednesday morning, and have changed now. See the poll at the bottom for the latest lines.
#11 STANFORD @ COLORADO (10AM, PAC12 NETWORKS)
Stanford is a 16 point favorite. Over/Under is 59.5
Time to hope once against that Stanford can falter on the road. Unfortunately the Cougars couldn't finish the job, losing in heartbreaking fashion. Colorado was close to beating UCLA. Can they get their first signature win of the MacIntyre era AND shake up the Pac-12 North? It's hard to know what our staff thinks cause the spread is so high, let's see if anyone really thinks the Buffs will win.
Nik Jam: I think Furd gets another scare but the breaks will fall their way and they will pull it off eventually.
Ruey Yen: Back to back lackluster outing for Stanfurd (but they still win) to show that they are vulnerable and to give Cal fans false hope?
Andrew G Miller: Only Utah and Washington had double-digit win margins last week. The Pac-12 abhors a blowout.
PerryScope: Buffs have no gas left after close loss to UCLA
Berkelium97: The Lobsterbacks should cruise to an easy victory. A garbage time TD or two will push us past the over.
KWBears: Furd is too good here to lose.
ARIZONA STATE @ WASHINGTON STATE (12:30 PM, FOX SPORTS 1)
Washington State is a 3 point favorite. Over/Under is 64
Most see Wazzu getting to bowl eligibility against the Devils, but first place Perry sees an upset. Will he gain even more ground on everyone or will this be good news for his rivals?
Nik Jam: I still believe in the Cougars. Should be a good one though, Arizona State might be desperate.
Ruey Yen: I also would not be surprised if the Cougs are super flat and get routed by ASU.
Andrew G Miller: This could be a very entertaining game that helps to shake out the middle of the conference a little bit. I'll cautiously take the Cougs.
PerryScope: Sun Devils will get enough pressure to disrupt Leach's air raid.
Berkelium97: Both teams surrender over 30 points per game, so we should see a shootout. The Cougs will earn bowl eligibility at the expense of ASU's atrocious pass defense.
#23 UCLA @ OREGON STATE (1:30 PM, PAC-12 NETWORKS)
UCLA is a 17.5 point favorite. Over/Under is 57
These high spreads are always tricky, but little love for Oregon State even covering against the Bruins despite being at home.
Nik Jam: UCLA won't look past Oregon State after the Colorado scare. This one will be easy.
Ruey Yen: Oregon State is bad.
Andrew G Miller: Blowout rule applies here too, even though it's against the lowly Beavers.
PerryScope: Roll Bruins against a depleted squad.
Berkelium97: The rain will prevent UCLA from winning this one too handily. Still, this should be a relatively easy victory for the Bruins.
KWBears: What's the point of playing this game again?
#12 UTAH @ WASHINGTON (4:30 PM, FOX)
Washington is a 1.5 point favorite. Over/Under is 47
Utah continues to get disrespect from Vegas. Like when they were underdogs to USC, our staff isn't buying it. Turned out that time USC was the better team, what about this Saturday?
Nik Jam: We all scoffed at Utah being underdogs to USC... but I think this game is too big for Utah to choke.
Ruey Yen: Utes got more to play for than the Huskies.
Andrew G Miller: Yeah no I'm not buying this at all.
PerryScope: Utes are mad about the USC game and don't want people to forget about them as potential contenders for the Conference.
Berkelium97: UW pulls the upset in a soggy, sloppy game.
KWBears: Utes win by a close one.
ARIZONA @ USC (7:30 PM, ESPN)
USC is an 18 point favorite. Over/Under is 67 but this was a late addition. On Wednesday there was no Over/Under so we're doing the ol' "Predict total score, 1 point if within 10" game.
Again with the high spreads. Arizona has fallen victim to blowouts a few times this year, most of the staff predicts another brutal loss for the Wildcats.
Nik Jam: Arizona is falling apart.
Ruey Yen: USC wins but don't cover.
Andrew G Miller: I'll probably regret this one, but it just feels like a really bad matchup for Arizona.
PerryScope: I think they can keep it close after USC is thinking about that close road win against us.
Berkelium97: USC should cruise to an easy victory against a pitiful Arizona team that surrenders over 40 points per game in Pac-12 play.
KWBears: Trojans dominate the Wildcats.
CALIFORNIA @ OREGON (7:30PM, ESPN2)
Cal is a 4.5 point underdog. Over/Under is 76
Our Bears cap the night with what looks like will be a rainy tilt with the Oregon Ducks. The early entries in our poll had Cal, but the last three guys picked the Ducks.
Nik Jam: Eventually me picking Cal will be right, right?
Ruey Yen: Bears win a wild shootout on the latest edition of Pac-12 after dark.
Andrew G Miller: I think our offense matches up well with their defense. We shall see.
PerryScope: Weather could be bad (shades to 2013).
Berkelium97: Cal's offense should slaughter Oregon's porous pass defense. However, heavy rain will mostly neutralize that advantage for the Bears. An extra slippery Royce Freeman carries Oregon to victory.
KWBears: Cal is no bueno. I'm losing faith.
WILD CARD: LOCK OF THE WEEK
Pick the straight up winner of one of the following games!
Duke @ North Carolina
Penn State @ #21 Northwestern
#8 TCU @ #14 Oklahoma State
#7 Michigan State @ Nebraska
#2 LSU @ #4 Alabama
A lot of people picking Michigan State (6 point favorite) to topple unranked Nebraska. Seems like a logical choice, but maybe it's a chance for Perry and/or Kevin to gain ground if Nebraska can pull an upset and TCU and/or North Carolina can win.
Ruey Yen: (Michigan State) Looks like the safest bet on paper.
PerryScope: (TCU) Too Much Boykin/Doctson
Berkelium97: (Michigan State) Poor Mike Riley. His team's average margin of defeat in its 6 losses is fewer than 4 points. This week's loss won't be quite that close.
KWBears: (North Carolina) Tar Heels are on fire this season.
WILD CARD: UPSET OF THE WEEK
Pick an upset, get three points with a straight up win! Pick no upset, get one point if no upsets happen from the list.
SMU (vs. #22 Temple)
Vanderbilt (@ #10 Florida)
Colorado (vs. #11 Stanford)
Arkansas (@ #18 Ole Miss)
#16 Florida State (@ #1 Clemson)
South Carolina (@ Tennessee)
Oregon State (vs. #23 UCLA)
Iowa State (@ #15 Oklahoma)
Minnesota (@ #3 Ohio State)
Arizona (@ USC)
Florida State (who indeed is a 12 point dog to Clemson) and Arkansas are popular picks. We also have one for SMU. Only a few explained their picks.
Ruey Yen: (Florida State) Don't believe that Clemson are for real although FSU has their own issues too.
PerryScope: (Arkansas) Feeling
Berkelium97: (Arkansas) Arkansas tends to play teams pretty tough, even if they usually lose. Maybe Ole Miss' recent inability to win big comes back to haunt them...
A lot of good games to come this Saturday. Hope yall enjoy the day games and then witness a Golden Bear victory and a shaken up Pac-12 South! Who will come out on top in our picks tomorrow? Will there be a different person in first?