College Football Betting Free Pick: Washington State Cougars at Arizona State Sun Devils
CFB FREE PICK: Washington State Cougars at Arizona State Sun Devils
#148 UNDER 59 (Saturday, October 12 @ 3:30 pm EST)
There’s been a lot of drama in Pullman following the now infamous second half meltdown to UCLA and blowout loss to Utah. Head coach Mike Leach decided it best to call out his players to the media while defensive coordinator Tracy Claeys abruptly resigned. The good news is the PAC-12 appears wide open this season. The bad news is the Cougars are already 0-2 and about to embark on a brutal stretch of three road games in four weeks. It’s probably too early for “must win” talk but drop Saturday’s game in Tempe and it’s a dumpster fire in waiting.
According to Leach, the defense was simplified following the departure of Claeys. That’s generally coach speak for they sucked, we had a heart to heart, extra time to prepare, and are now ready to redeem themselves. If redemption is in the cards, Arizona State is about as ideal a PAC-12 opponent as you can get. The Sun Devils are off to a surprising 4-1 start on the strength of a solid defense and improving but still methodical offense. ASU is running the football 57% of the time and playing at slower than average pace. It’s resulted in four unders and only one over which came against a Colorado squad that has a habit of getting into shootouts.
Meanwhile, Washington State has had it pretty easy in terms of opposing defenses with New Mexico State, Houston, and UCLA currently 122nd, 123rd, and 124th respectively in total defense. When asked to step up in class, the Cougs managed only 313 yards and 13 points vs. Utah. ASU isn’t on Utah’s level but they are far closer to the Utes that the aforementioned trio of hapless stop units.
Given Herm Edwards’ propensity for conservative play, especially not wanting to expose his young defense to too many plays, and Washington State poised to bounce back defensively, it sets the stage for a solid play on the under.