California at Oregon (No. 9)
Kickoff: Friday, Oct. 15 at 10:30 p.m. ET
Spread: Oregon -13.5
Oregon saw themselves slump in a game against Stanford two weeks ago when they played without their Offensive Coordinator Joe Moorhead. A team that is currently ranked 9th in the AP poll, but got as high as 3 before the loss to Stanford. This will be the first time that either of these teams has played Pac-12 football after dark this season.
While the Ducks (4-1, 1-1 Pac-12) enjoyed a welcomed bye week, the rest of the national landscape was thrown into chaos. Previously undefeated teams Alabama, Penn State, and BYU losing kept Oregon in the top 10 and in striking distance of that all-important top four. The Ducks return to action against a Cal (1-4, 0-2) team also coming off its bye, and in search of its win over an FBS opponent.
The Ducks have recently severed the loss of top running back CJ Verdell. As much as that hurts the team, the Ducks have some guys capable of being the starting back in Travis Dye, Seven McGee, Byron Cardwell, Sean Dollars, and Trey Benson. McGee and Cardwell were both four-star signees for the Ducks this last season.
A win puts Oregon back atop the North Division of the Pac-12 with idle Oregon State, and the Ducks are back in control of their postseason possibilities with Stanford’s loss at Arizona State last Friday.
Key To The Game:
Get The Offense Chugging – If the Ducks can balance their attack between the run and pass, it should be a blowout. But for the past couple of weeks, the passing game has sputtered a little bit with Anthony Brown under center. While the Ducks RB crew should be able to hold that fort down, the Ducks will need Brown to step up.
California Golden Bears
The Golden Bears (1-4, 0-2 Pac 12) are looking for their first win against an FBS team this season. The lone win for Cal came against Sacramento State.
The low point may have been a 21-6 home loss to Washington State on Oct. 2 where the Golden Bears were shut out over the final three quarters and had only 152 passing yards from senior quarterback Chase Garbers, who has 1,245 passing yards this season but has a 7-to-5 touchdown-to-interception ratio.
Key To The Game:
Force The Ducks To Pass – Anthony Brown has been struggling for the Ducks under center, and if Cal defense can stop the run, Cal may just have a chance to win the game.
Prediction: Oregon Wins 38 – 21
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