Pac-12 football picks: Jacob Thorpe selects winners for this week’s games
For the second straight week I’m on the wrong side against the spread, that’ll teach me to believe in Oregon. Still, fool me last year, shame on me; fool me this year, shame on me.
Stanford may have claimed the conference’s top spot but it’s no guarantee they’ll keep it, as evidenced by the tight spread in their game against USC this week. It’s expected there will be a number of tight games in the Pac-12 this week, so exercise extreme caution when making your picks.
Washington at UCLA, UCLA by 2 1/2: The Huskies traditionally struggle against the Bruins and this loaded UCLA team seems to be finding new playmakers every week. Vegas may think UW is better by half a point (a home-field advantage is said to be worth three points) but we’ll believe it when we see it. UCLA 31-24
WSU at Arizona, Arizona by 13: The Cougars haven’t won a game in over five weeks and while the string of blowouts should end against the Wildcats, beating an improving Arizona team at home might be asking too much. Arizona 28-24
Utah at Oregon, Oregon by 25 1/2: The Utes have proven to be one of the most difficult teams to face on the road this year. Unfortunately, Utah must play road games as well. Expect an unhappy Oregon team to take out its frustration while dropping the Utes to 1-6 in conference play. Oregon 58-21
California at Colorado, Colorado by 2 1/2: This could be one of the more physical and emotional games of the week, as the loser likely won’t win a Pac-12 game this season. Cal may have more young talent but the Buffaloes have shown just a bit more fight this year. Colorado 28-21
Stanford at USC, Stanford by 4: With easy wins over ASU and UCLA already this year, Stanford is probably putting a Rose Bowl berth on the line in this game. Wouldn’t it be just like the Trojans to spoil it for the Cardinal? Stanford 31-21
Oregon State at Arizona State, Arizona State by 14: After a scare against Utah the Sun Devils can get back on a track with a comfortable win against the fading Beavers. Arizona State 38-21
Last week: 3-2 straight up, 2-3 against the spread Overall: 22-9, 14-16