Pick with Analysis
It wasn’t long ago that these two teams played each other in the Las Vegas Bowl. Now in the regular season, in the battle for Utah, they face off again with the home team getting the edge. The Utes are currently a -3.5 point favorite at 5 Dimes Sportsbook.
That previous meeting was slightly ridiculous if anything. The Utes got out to a 35-0 lead in the first quarter with the help of a couple pick-sixes, but from there, it was BYU’s Game. In fact, the Cougars answered back winning the next three quarters. However, it wasn’t enough as Utah held on for a crazy 35-28 win. In the rematch, expect BYU to be looking for revenge.
The Cougars looked their part in their opener, already with a road win (technically neutral Game played in Glendale) to their name, taking down Arizona 18-16. BYU’s defense dominated for the most part holding Arizona to three points through the first three quarters, while quarterback Taysom Hill and running back Jamaal Williams led the way on the offensive end.
Those two will be key for BYU as neither played in last year’s loss. The problem for BYU in that last meeting was that once Utah got out to an early lead, they couldn’t roll with their bread-and-butter and run the ball as much. But as long as the Utes don’t Score35 points right off the bat, Williams will be seeing the ball plenty after running for 162 yards in the first Game. At quarterback, Hill’s goal will be to play safe and not turn the ball over like Tanner Mangum did.
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While Utah has a good defense, they didn’t get a great test in the opener, going against FCS school Southern Utah. As for the Utes on the offensive end, their first Game without Travis Wilson was quite the experience.
Despite going against the lower-level school, Utah never really got things going offensively. JUCO transfer Troy Williams was solid for the most part, but again, the offense still only had 24 points. Williams finished with 272 yards and two touchdowns through the air. The bigger question was on the ground where Devontae Booker used to roam. Joe Williams and Troy McCormick combined for just 104 yards on 24 carries. again, these are good numbers, but maybe more was expected against a team like Southern Utah.
against BYU, a defense that mostly contained Arizona, Utah will have to pick up its Game. since it’s hard to see this matchup going the same way as last December, the winner should have success running the ball and right now, the Cougars look to have the better ground attack. But this early in the season, which team sports the better defense?
Our Pick – BYU has lost 5 straight to the Utes. But 5 or those were by a TD or less, including a 1 point loss in 2010 and a 3 point loss in 2012. The revenge angle isn’t as strong when the team seeking revenge also has a new coach on the sidelines, but the players certainly remember last December. Falling behind early won’t be an option this time around.
We like Our chances with the underdog here in a Game that should be up for grabs. BYU +3.5