The #19 overall Utah Utes (3-1) host the Washington State Cougars (3-1) this weekend in a critical PAC-12 matchup. Kickoff is set for 10:00 PM EST on Saturday, September 28th at Rice-Eccles Stadium and the game will be televised on FS1.
Taking a look at the Week 5 college football odds, Washington State opened as a 6-point road underdog earlier this week. That line has moved upwards by a full point after early betting, as the Cougars are currently listed at +7. The total for the game is sitting at 58.5 points.
Vegas Betting Preview & Game Odds: Utah vs Washington State
Washington State dropped to 3-1 overall last weekend, falling 67-63 at home against UCLA after a shocking second half collapse. The Cougars were up 35-17 at the end of the second quarter before completely imploding down the stretch. The loss certainly wasn’t on the offense, as QB Anthony Gordon was 41/61 for 570 yards and nine touchdowns. Yes, Gordon actually recorded nine passing touchdowns in a single game and it still wasn’t enough to propel his team to victory. His favorite target was clearly Easop Winston Jr., who exploded for 114 yards and four touchdowns while also recording a team-high ten receptions. RB Max Borghi led the way on the ground, rushing for 123 yards on just 15 carries. As a whole, Washington State generated exactly 700 yards of total offense despite the loss.
The Cougars play on defense was clearly atrocious against the Bruins, as they were torched for 7 touchdowns and over 600 total yards of offense. Washington State was especially bad against the pass, allowing UCLA QB Dorian Thompson-Robinson to pass for 507 yards and five touchdowns.
Utah also lost their first game of the season in Week 4, dropping a 30-23 decision on the road against USC. The Utes fell behind 14-10 in the first half and never recovered, getting outscored 16-14 over the final 30 minutes of the game. QB Tyler Huntley was fairly average through the air, going 22/30 for 210 yards and one touchdown. RB Devin Brumfield led the way on the ground, averaging 6.3 yards per carry. None of the Utah receiving corps really found a way to break out, as the Trojans secondary didn’t allow a passing play longer than 38 yards or surrender a single 40+ yard receiving game. Overall, Utah gained just under 450 yards of total offense but scored only two touchdowns in the loss.
The Utes defense didn’t have their best showing against USC last weekend, allowing third-string quarterback Matt Fink to pass for 351 yards and 3 touchdowns. Utah also allowed Trojans WR Michael Pittman Jr. to haul in ten receptions for 232 yards and a touchdown.
NCAA Football Betting Predictions & Free Pick: Washington State +7
While I am slightly concerned that the Cougars may still be a bit shell-shocked after their monumental collapse in the second half last weekend, I think that I still have to go back to the well with Washington State in this particular spot. The Cougars had been playing well prior to Week 4, going 3-0 to start the season and scoring 58+ points in two out of their first three games. I’m inclined to believe that a second straight PAC-12 battle will bring the best out of Washington State, as they certainly will want to make a big statement after such a poor outing against UCLA. Utah also lost last weekend, but I have a little bit less faith in the Utes after they allowed third-stringer Matt Fink to embarrass them through the air. If Fink and Co. managed to have such a strong outing passing the football, Washington State should have a field day after Anthony Gordon threw for nine touchdowns on his own against the Bruins.
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The Cougars are a very impressive 12-5 ATS over their last 17 games. They have also owned the Utes against the spread as of late, going 6-1 ATS over their last seven meetings. Finally, Washington State is also a perfect 5-0 ATS in their last five road games. On the other side, Utah has really struggled against the spread in recent weeks, going only 1-3 ATS to start the season. Ultimately, I think this matchup could easily go either way, and while the Utes likely deserve to be the favorite, I think a full touchdown is way too many points to lay in what should be a high-flying offensive showcase that comes right down to the wire. Give me the Cougars to cover on the road here in Week 5!