NCAA Football: Pac 12 Over/Under Win Total
NCAA FB: Pac 12 Top 4 Contenders Over/Under Win Total
In the crazy world of college football the Power 5 conferences reign supreme. Since 2000, however, teams from the ACC, Big 10 and SEC have won nearly every national championship, making the Pac-12 almost seem like the little brother of the group.
That little brother is filled with lots of talent and excellent coaching though with teams that can make the College Football Playoff and compete for a national championship
Here are the 2019 Over/Under Win Totals of Four Pac-12 contenders. (Courtesy of FanDuel).
Washington Huskies: 9.5 Wins, Over (-124) Under (-124)
Oregon Ducks: 9 Wins, Over (+102) Under (-120)
Utah Utes: 9 Wins, Over (-128) Under (+110)
Washington State Cougars: 8.5 Wins, Over (+116) Under (-136)
Washington: The Huskies finished their 2018 season tied for first in the Pac-12 with Washington State. Washington accumulated a 10-4 overall record and 7-2 in conference. Over the past couple seasons, Washington has been one of the best teams in the country thanks to their outstanding defense. Unfortunately for Husky fans, there is a lot of turn over on that side of the ball, especially in the secondary. It will be essential for the teams success to replace those now NFL players.
Regarding the Offense, losing QB Jake Browning and RB Myles Gaskin definitely hurts, but Washington has a pretty good replacement: The top ranked QB in the 2016 recruiting class Jacob Eason, who has the talent to be one of the best QBs in the country and a lot to prove after his time on Georgia. Luckily for Eason, he is surrounded by three productive WRs in Aaron Fuller, Andre Baccellia and Ty Jones, as well as a sturdy offensive line.
Washington’s only challenging road games come against Stanford and BYU which helps its chances of conference success. And while the Huskies have plenty of talent, the players lost to the NFL or graduation must be taken into account here. I would be cautious taking the over here.
Washington: Under -124
Oregon: The Ducks had a disappointing season according to their standards finishing fourth in the Pac-12 with a 9-4 overall record and 5-4 in conference. This iteration of the Ducks has a chance to bring Oregon back to college football prominence. Justin Herbert is back and should be a Heisman Trophy candidate while RB CJ Verdell (1,018 yards and 10 touchdowns as a freshman), will continue to be a workhorse and look to improve in his second season. Losing massive production at the No. 1 WR spot from Dillion Mitchell hurts, but there are other young WRs that will be forced to step up.
For the Oregon defense, LB Troy Dye, and the 115 tackles he had last season, deciding to return to Eugene is great news. Additionally, with two multi-year starters in the secondary and plenty of talent on the line, the ducks should have a good defense to compliment Herbert and his weapons.
Oregon plays Stanford, Washington and USC on the road, three games that could be extremely close. The Ducks bring back 17 starters from last season and If Justin Herbert plays like a Heisman Trophy finalist and potential No. 1 pick in next year’s NFL draft, as many expect him to, the Ducks can find lots success this season. Nine or more wins is likely.
Oregon: Over +102
Utah: The Utes finished its 2018 campaign with tied for third in the Pac-12 with Stanford, garnering a record of 9-4 overall and 6-3 in conference. Utah is a sneaky good team with lots of returning talent. QB Tyler Huntley didn’t have the best 2018 season production wise, but he was accurate with his passes (64.1 completion percentage) and can make plays with his feet (304 rushing yards). Complimenting Huntley is RB Zack Moss (1,096 rushing yards) as well as all of the top six pass catchers from last season. If Moss can stay healthy, the Utes could have a powerful offense.
On defense, Utah’s top four tacklers, two LBs and two DBs, are all in the NFL meaning players like LB Francis Bernard are going to have to replace the production of former teammates. Similarly, DB Julian Blackmon will be forced to, and has the ability to, lead the secondary in Utah’s DB heavy schemes.
It helps that Utah is in the Pac-12 South division instead of the north division with Washington, Washington State, Oregon and Stanford. The Utes two biggest road tests come against USC and Washington and do not have too many other challenging games on the schedule. Given their returning talent and schedule I can see Utah reaching double digit wins.
UTAH : Over -128
Washington State: The Cougars had quite a good season last year ending up tied for first with Washington in the Pac-12 at 7-2 in conference record and an overall record of 11-2. Gardner Minshew is no longer the signal caller, but the Eastern Washington graduate-transfer Gage Gubrud is coming in with experience and, of course, will have offensive mastermind Mike Leach calling plays, which always helps. Sophomore RB Max Borghi now has a firm lock on the No. 1 RB spot, after James Williams decided to go to the NFL, and should be ready to make a name for himself after a productive freshman year. Furthermore, all four of Washington State’s top WRs are returning to school, so Gubrud and Leach will have plenty of weapons.
The cougars defense is facing some turnover but has the talented pieces to field a good unit. Losing top-tackler Peyton Pelluer is tough, but LB Jahad Woods had the second most tackles on the team, making him one of the most important players in the front seven and a viable option to replace Pelluer’s production. In the secondary, safeties Jalen Thompson and Skyler Thomas both had good seasons and will need to be the teams safety blanket over the top.
Schedule wise, Washington State drew the short end of the stick by having to face Oregon, Washington and Utah on the road, which could severely impact their record. If Gubrud can recreate the success Minshew had in 2018, Washington State can win more than eight games but there are a lot of factors at play here like their schedule and Gubrud’s adjustment to the FBS.
Washington State: Over +116