Free College Football Pick for Thursday: Utah vs. Oregon State
by CarbonSports - 10/13/2014
CarbonSports.ag Game Line: Utah (-1.5) vs. Oregon State (+1.5)
Both of these Pac-12 teams had last weekend off to rest up after victories and prepare for this game. With identical 4-1 SU records, Utah and Oregon State have a shot at claiming their respective divisions in the Pac-12 but that run would likely end for the losers of Thursday's game.
These two schools played in a wild 51-48 OT game last season with the Beavers lucky enough to come out on top. Oregon State had a 20-10 lead at half int that game and watched Utah score 35 points in the 2nd half (outscored Oregon 21-10 in 4th quarter) to ultimately send that game to overtime. The action was fast and furious in the final five minutes with multiple lead changes, but a TD by Utah with 9 seconds left got the tie before the Utes could only muster a FG in their first possession of OT while Oregon State scored a touchdown. If this year's meeting has anywhere near the same type of action it will be a very entertaining game to watch.
However, everyone is here to make money and for that I strongly believe we've got to go with the revenge-minded Utes.
Both teams may have had last week off, but the Beavers are 1-8 ATS as home underdogs after playing consecutive road games and Oregon State's last two games were @ USC and @ Colorado. The Beavers are also 0-6 ATS as dogs after scoring 35 or more points and that last outing at Colorado was a 36-31 win for Oregon State. Defensively the Beavers have really started to get worse as the level of competition increases with 30 or more points being allowed in consecutive games. Remember, they gave up 48 points to this Utah team a season ago and the Utes definitely have more weapons on offense than Oregon State does this time around.
I say that because the Beavers best WR in last year's game was Brandin Cooks. Cooks left early this year to join the Saints in the NFL, but it was his 210 yards and 3 TD's on nine receptions in this game a season ago that really put him on the map and Beavers QB Sean Mannion has yet to found a guy that can really replace Cooks.
Utah showed some moxie in upsetting then #8 UCLA in Southern California the last time they were on the field and they aren't a team that will have spent the past 10+ days pumping their own tires. Kyle Whittingham's team has yet to be tremendously sharp in any one of their wins this year but with Utah looking up at the likes of USC and the two schools from Arizona in the Pac-12 South, now is the time for them to start playing their best football.
Utah is 11-4 ATS following a week off and has a 4-1 ATS run going against a winning team. With revenge on their minds for last year's home loss, the Utes will be able to return the favor this year as the Beavers just don't have as good a team this time around.
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