Bookmaker's Corner: USC Trojans vs. Oregon Ducks - Trick or Treat?
by Richard Gardner | Bodog Sportsbook Manager - 10/28/2009
This Halloween college football fans are in for a treat when the USC Trojans travel to Autzen Stadium (4:00 p.m. ET) to take on the Oregon Ducks, a must-win for USC if it hopes to extend its seven-season streak of winning or sharing the Pac-10 Conference title.
What makes this matchup a bit tricky is that USC's only loss this season was to the Washington Huskies, a team that Oregon just so happened to beat quite convincingly last week. But a bit more on that later…
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Like the Trojans, the Ducks didn't exactly start the 2009 college football season well, either. They lost 19-8 to Boise State at Bronco Stadium in their first game back in September, and everyone remembers LeGarrette Blount's sucker-punch to Boise State's Byron Hout after the game.
Since then the team has regrouped and bounced back nicely. The Ducks have six straight wins and are sitting steady at No. 10 in the BCS standings. Their victims thus far (minus any sucker punches, thankfully) have included No. 16 Utah and then-No. 6 California, two victories over ranked teams that have dropped the Ducks' odds to win the 2010 BCS national championship to 15/1.
The Trojans are still in the national title hunt with 5/1 odds to win the BCS, but if they lose to Oregon on Saturday night at raucous Autzen Stadium, it's over. (No. 5 USC would still be favored to play for a national championship if it weren't for a 16-13 shock loss at Washington back on Sept. 19th.)
Most sportsbooks opened with the Trojans by 3.5, although that was quickly bet down to 3.
If Oregon beats USC and goes on to finish 11-1, and Boise State finishes undefeated as many expect it to do, which team gets top billing? Regardless, you can expect plenty of grumbling on both sides, particularly if a national championship is on the line.
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