The No. 5 Washington Huskies visit the Stanford Cardinal for a Pac-12 Conference game Saturday night. The Huskies are coming off their worst effort of the season, defeating Arizona State 15-7 as 26.5-point favorites. Washington can be forgiven a bit for the dismal effort, as the ‘Dawgs were coming off the huge win against Oregon. Stanford is coming off a 42-7 thumping at the hands of UCLA. The Washington vs Stanford preview shows the Huskies are favored by 26.5 and the total is 59.5.
Line: Washington -26.5
Penix Looks Human vs Sun Devils
Michael Penix Jr. didn’t have his best game against Arizona State, throwing for 275 yards and no TDs. He was picked off twice and fumbled on a botched handoff. But the Huskies did enough to get the win, which is all that matters.
The Huskies are still No. 3 in the nation in total yards, averaging 507.4 yards per game. The majority of those yards come through the passing game, where the Huskies are averaging 403.3 yards per game, best in the nation. The rushing game isn’t bad, gaining 4.5 yards per rush. But the Huskies only run 23.3 times game.
Washington’s defense is overshadowed by the offense. But it’s solid. The Huskies are allowing 18.9 points per game to teams averaging 28.3 points. Washington allows some yards, but do a good job preventing teams from scoring. The Huskies’ defensive yards per point is No. 7 in the country at 20.2.
The NCAA football schedule has Washington facing USC next week, so the Huskies could be looking ahead. It doesn’t get much easier with Utah and Oregon State after that. But the wake-up call against the Sun Devils could have the Huskies focused for an inferior foe.
Cardinal Having Another Dismal Showing
It didn’t take long for Stanford to go from a solid football program to a poor one. The college football standings show Stanford at 2-5 this season, with wins over Hawaii and Colorado. The Cardinal lost to Sacramento State earlier this season. That sums up the state of Stanford football.
The Cardinal are averaging 21.3 points per game, so the offensive isn’t inept. Stanford’s foes are allowing 25.5 points per game, so the Cardinal are below average offensively, which is a given. The Cardinal don’t run the ball very well, but are average throwing the ball. Stanford gains 234.4 yards per game against teams allowing 235.2.
The defense isn’t very good, but not as poor as it looks at first glance. Stanford allows 36.9 points per game, although its opponents average 34.5 points. The Cardinal are below average, but not too terribly much. Stanford has shown trouble stopping the pass. That’s not a good thing against the Huskies.
What to Expect
The Washington vs Stanford preview is looking for a bounce back game from Penix. The Arizona State game wasn’t the first time he’s be held without a TD pass this season, so he can move forward after a disappointing effort. The Huskies figure to throw quite a bit here and let Penix pad his stats a bit against an overmatched defense.
Stanford is likely to try and run the ball to shorten the game. That hasn’t always worked out for Stanford, but it does make sense. The Cardinal should make a few plays offensively, but should be no match for the Huskies as the game wears on.
Who to Bet On?
The Washington vs Stanford preview shows the NCAAF odds of Washington -26.5 to be about right. Stanford was a 27-point underdog at home to Oregon four weeks ago and lost 42-6. The Cardinal are 0-3 against the spread when getting 17 or more points, losing all three games by at least 35 points. Stanford doesn’t have the horses to compete with the top NCAAF teams in the Pac-12.
The Huskies are 1-2 against the spread when favored by 20 or more points this season. But the real key to this one is if the Huskies are focused on the game at hand and not looking at the next three weeks. After last week, you have to believe they will be and the Huskies -26.5 are the side to take in this one.
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