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UCLA

vs.

Arizona State

PAC-12

College Football Pick

10/8/16

We're a week into October and it's almost guaranteed that no one pegged Colorado to be leading the Pac-12 South at this point. But with a 2-0 record that's the case with UCLA and Arizona State behind with a conference loss apiece. The Bruins were expected to be on top, but look like the same team as a year ago. Either way, they are a -10 point road favorite.

Before getting further, Arizona State quarterback Manny Wilkins is doubtful to play in this game, which is where that line comes from. He injured his leg in the loss at USC last weekend and the Sun Devils simply could not contend with their backup quarterback. After a less than stellar performance from Brady White against the Trojans, that 10 points may not be enough. That said, give him a full week of practice in this offense and things may be a little different.

No matter what happens, Arizona State still has one of the worst defenses in the conference and that will probably be an issue against Josh Rosen, even if he's had a slow start. The Bruins have struggled to get going, but at least won comfortably against a beat up Arizona team last game.

But we can't forget how last year's game went with a struggling Arizona State team coming in and dominating UCLA 38-23. It's a wonder if the opposite will happen with the Bruins now on the road.

Rosen struggled in that loss last season and he'll need a better performance if UCLA wants to win or cover. He's coming off his best game of the year, throwing for 350 yards and three touchdowns, but still completed just 54.1% of his passes in the win. If he repeats last year's game, the Sun Devils could probably keep the score tight.

The problem for UCLA is that their run game has been bad with the Bruins rushing for 3.3 yards per carry as a team. Neither Soso Jamabo nor Nate Starks has been able to fill the void left by Paul Perkins. If UCLA can't score at least 30 against this ASU defense, then they'll definitely have a problem going forward.

 

 

On the other end, there are some obvious questions if Wilkins can't play. Brady White will have a lot on his shoulders if he gets the start, so it wouldn't be too surprising if Demario Richard and Kalen Ballage saw a lot of the ball in the backfield.

ASU may be starting a backup quarterback, but UCLA is still a hard team to trust with how the offense has played this season and the trends back that up.

The Bruins are 1-4 ATS vs. a team with a winning record, 1-6 ATS in their last seven overall and haven't covered in four straight road games. The Sun Devils have covered in six straight home games and five straight vs. a team with a winning record.

No matter the quarterback, all signs point to Arizona State in this game. Arizona State +10

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