The Arizona State Wildcats will play at the USC Trojans on Saturday in a college football Pac-12 Conference battle between teams who made coaching changes, one a high-profile hire in the offseason, another from a firing during the season.
The Trojans wooed away coach Lincoln Riley from Oklahoma in the offseason, then Sooners quarterback Caleb Williams followed Riley to Los Angeles.
The Sun Devils fired coach Herm Edwards on Sept. 18 after a 30-21 loss to Eastern Michigan. Edwards was 26-20 with the Sun Devils, never winning a conference or division title.
Here’s everything you need from a betting perspective on the Arizona State-USC game, from the point spread, moneyline, and total over/under and a pick from our betting expert (odds via FOX Bet):
USC’s ugly win at Oregon State: Trojans’ defense shows up | The Joel Klatt Show
Joel Klatt reacts to the USC Trojans’ win against the Oregon State Beavers, 17-14.
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Arizona State @ No. 6 USC (10:30 p.m. ET Saturday, ESPN)
Point spread: USC -26 (USC favored to win by more than 26 points, otherwise Arizona State covers)
Moneyline: USC -2000 favorites to win (bet $10 to win $10.50 total); Arizona State +800 underdogs to win (bet $10 to win $90 total)
Total scoring over/under: 61 points scored by both teams combined
Arizona State Sun Devils
The Sun Devils are 1-3 against the spread (ATS) and straight up (SU) this season.
The Sun Devils have hit the under in the over/under (O/U) in every game this season.
The Sun Devils are 1-1-1 ATS and 0-3 SU as a 20- to 30-point underdogs since 2002
The Trojans lead the all-time series 24-14 but the Sun Devils won the previous meeting 31-16 in November.
The Trojans are 3-1 ATS and 4-0 SU this season and 2-2 in the O/U.
The Trojans are 8-11 ATS and 13-6 SU as a home favorite since 2018.
Pick by FOX Sports betting analyst Geoff Schwartz:
Things could not get worse for Arizona State right now. The Sun Devils’ head coach got fired two weeks ago. Then they didn’t even look slightly competitive against a strong Utah squad last weekend, losing 34-13. Now they travel to Los Angeles to face a USC offense primed for a get-right game. USC will pour on the points.
The Trojans have an explosive offensive attack. They’ve got Heisman hopeful Caleb Williams at quarterback, Jordan Addison and Mario Williams at receiver and Travis Dye at running back. They are 18th in explosive play rate, 12th in rushing success rate, and they convert nearly 50% of their third-down opportunities. However, they did not play up to expectations on Saturday night against Oregon State.
Caleb Williams was 15 of 36 for 160 yards and only one passing touchdown. Credit Oregon State for its defensive strategy. The Beavers have the most veteran secondary group in the conference, and they played to their strength. They were not going to allow big plays through the air, but instead, they conceded rushing numbers. USC had 101 rushing yards in the first quarter before going away from the run until the fourth quarter. Arizona State does not have the defense or the patience to attempt what the Beavers did on Saturday night.
Arizona State’s defense ranks 85th in points per drive, 112th in rushing success rate and 122nd in passing success rate. As you’d expect, the Sun Devils don’t rush the passer well and don’t create the havoc plays needed to slow down the Trojans. Before the Oregon State game, USC had scored 11 touchdowns on 15 first-half drives, with two of the non-touchdown drives ending with the half.
I expect to see that offensive efficiency return against a Sun Devils squad looking to ride out the season until they find a new head coach.
I’ll take USC to cover the first half before the Trojans let their foot off the gas.
PICK: USC -14.5 1st half
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