While neither one of these teams has had a great season for their standards, both of them have played spoiler at some point. And USC even has a shot to win the Pac-12 South, something that looked close to impossible a month ago. But coming off a huge win last weekend, Oregon is a -4 point home favorite in this Game, as seen at (at 5 Dimes Sportsbook).
Oregon took down Stanford over the weekend, and with that, any hopes the Pac-12 had at making the College Football Playoff. since starting the season 3-3, the Ducks have won Four straight and are coming off a huge 38-36 win at the Cardinal. With two home Games remaining on the slate, they could easily finish with nine wins and a decent bowl Game.
USC’s season has gone almost exactly the same, starting at 3-3, but now having won Four straight. That win streak started with a 42-24 win over Utah and that was followed by three extremely close wins. The most recent one was a comeback at Colorado.
With Oregon coming off the high of beating Stanford on Saturday, the Trojans get a small boost having an extra day of rest playing on Friday.
The last Four times these schools have played, the over has hit, but the last time they met was in 2012 with Oregon winning 62-51 on the road. Nevertheless, there could easily be 100 points in this year’s meeting as well.
Oregon’s weak spot is in the secondary and USC has the quarterback to exploit that. Cody Kessler has been good this year, but his numbers aren’t where they were a year ago. In the Trojans Four Game winning streak, Kessler only has six touchdowns and one interception, and hasn’t surpassed 264 passing yards. That’s a bit of a surprise considering he had 15 touchdowns through the first Four Games of the season. A lot of that has to do with Clay Helton as interim coach. The offense is running the ball more, and while it didn’t exactly work against Colorado, USC still has the talent in the backfield (Ronald Jones, Justin Davis) to run on most teams. Kessler and JuJu Smith-SChuster (63 receptions, 1,160 yards, 10 TDs) should have success through the air, but USC’s chances may depend on the ground Game.
The same could be said about Oregon after they upset Stanford, despite quarterback Vernon Adams attempting just 12 passes (still had 205 yards, 2 TDs). If the Ducks could run on Stanford, there’s no reason they can’t against USC. This offense has always been able to run the ball and Royce Freeman isn’t slowing down anytime soon. The sophomore has 1,392 yards and 12 TDs to go with 6.6 yards per carry on the year. With Adams healthy, Oregon has a better passing threat and more mobile QB. That has helped in Oregon’s winning streak.
With the Trojans playing a little slower lately, this could be a lower scoring Game. However, if the Ducks come out and Scorepoints right away, it could easily hit the over as both of these offenses have the ability to Scorequickly.
The favorite is 7-2 ATS in the last nine meetings between these schools. The under is 7-1 for USC in its last eight road Games, and the Ducks have covered Four straight overall.
Our Pick – Both offenses can move the football and put points on the board, however only one of these teams has a defense and that would be USC. Oregon ranks 115th in the nation in terms of points allowed and 126th in pass defense. That’s enough for us to grab the spot here. USC +4.5