#18 Utah (3-0, 0-0) at #13 Oregon (2-1, 0-0)
When: Saturday, September 26th, 2015
Where: Autzen Stadium, Eugene, OR
Time: 8:45 ET
TV: FOX Radio: XM 198
The PAC 12 season gets started for both Oregon and Utah tonight as they enter this game with both quarterbacks banged up. Oregon QB Vernon Adams missed last week’s game against Georgia State with a broken right index finger. He’s expected to be back tonight for the PAC 12 opener. If not, Jeff Lockie is more than capable of running this offense. He was 23-of-31 for 228 yards and two touchdowns in last week’s start against Georgia State. Sophomore running back Royce Freeman is off to a nice start with 373 yards and five touchdowns and he already ranks ninth in school history with 23 rushing TD’s. Oregon’s defense has been a concern so far. They’re near dead last in points and total yards allowed despite playing two FCS schools and Michigan State. They’re allowing 456 yards a game. PAC 12 teams will be salivating to play them.
Utah’s quarterback Travis Wilson missed last week’s game against Fresno State due to a sprained left shoulder. Backup Kendal Thompson filled in admirably for Wilson last week throwing for 159 yards on 19-of-25 passing in a win at Fresno State. Utah’s offense is led by running back Devontae Booker who has rushed for 345 yards and four touchdowns this season and has recorded nine career 100-yard games. Utah needed that 3-0 start heading into PAC 12 play because their schedule gets tough from here on out. Their schedule not only includes tonight’s road game, but away games at USC and Arizona to go along with their home games against UCLA and Arizona State. The Utes were trounced at home last year to Oregon 51-27 allowing the Ducks 508 yards of total offense. Utah is only allowing 18 points per game so far this year.
It’s hard to tell how healthy each of these quarterbacks are, but either way, the defense is going to be key. Oregon’s defense worries me after three weeks and Utah’s defense seems a lot better. I think Utah can control the clock and score enough to cover this double-digit spread.
Pick: Utah +11.5