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2011 Pac-12 Football Predictions: Which Teams Win in Week 6

Michael TierneyAnalyst IJune 30, 2011

2011 Pac-12 Football Predictions: Which Teams Win in Week 6

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    This slideshow shows Pac-12 Conference Week 6 game predictions. Predictions are revealed for each game (USC and Washington have byes).

    The Bears are at the Ducks, the Buffaloes are at the Cardinal, the Sun Devils are at the Utes, the Wildcats are at the Beavers and the Cougars are at the Bruins. 

    This slideshow is a continuation of:

    The Week 5 predictions.                           The Week 4 predictions.

    The Week 3 predictions.                           The Week 2 predictions.

    The Week 1 predictions.

California at Oregon

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    California at Oregon

    Thursday, Oct. 6th

    6 PM (PST) on ESPN

     

    Game Prediction: Oregon 27, California 17

    It was close last year: Oregon 15, California 13.

    That 2010 game was played in Berkeley, and now it will be played at Autzen stadium. But Cal's defense is significantly better and Oregon's is not. Cal's offense will be slightly better and Oregon's will be about the same (even though they lost offensive linemen and wide receivers to graduation). So who wins?

    Cal's offense will have success against Oregon's young defense. Cal's defense will frustrate Oregon's offense, but Oregon's speed and stamina will prevail. And it's Autzen stadium at night! Oregon by 10. 

Arizona State at Utah

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    Arizona State at Utah

    Saturday, Oct. 8th

     

    Game Prediction: Arizona State 24, Utah 19

    Whittingham's Utah was 30-1 at home in the MWC. Welcome to the more rigorous Pac-12. Utah will lose this game at home against Arizona State, but it will be close.

    The Sun Devils will be ranked very near the top 25, but losing QB Steven Threet impacts the team due to Osweiler's low completion percentage. ASU's starting wideout Kerry Taylor graduated and WR T.J. Simpson tore his ACL. The replacement WRs are capable and the running attack is their best asset. Defensive tackle Lawrence Guy left early for the NFL and Saia Falahola graduated, leaving ASU softer in the middle. CB LeQuan Lewis graduated, and one of their best players on defense, CB Omar Bolden, tore his ACL.

    This Arizona State team isn't as strong as last year's team but their uniforms look as good as Oregon's. The Ute's will be in the top 50, but won't be playing a half-dozen teams who averaged 2.5 wins last year. Utah played six opponents last season who had a combined record of 15-59.

    OC Norm Chow dumped the spread for a multiple look. Quarterback Jordan Wynn's shoulder is still recovering from offseason surgery, but will have to adjust to a new offense and a new linemen. Utah's best running backs, Eddie Wide and Matt Asiata (70 percent of Utah's offense) have graduated. True freshman RB Harvey Langi will have to fill in. Last year’s wide receivers Shakey Smithson and Jereme Brooks are both gone, so opponents will be keying on Langi. Only five players return on the Ute's defense. The defensive line and backfield both have one starter returning.

    Arizona State will run through Utah's defense for the close victory.

Washington State at UCLA

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    Washington State at UCLA

    Saturday, Oct. 8th

     

    Game Prediction: UCLA 24, Washington State 21

    After losing four of their last five games, UCLA need a victory. In fact, if the Bruins aren't too beat up from playing three straight weeks of tough teams (Texas, at Oregon State, and at Stanford), they might take their losing-season frustrations out on the Cougars. There is a possibility that the Bruins may even try to run the score up a bit. But Washington State had a fairly easy five-week schedule (only played Idaho State, UNLV, at San Diego State, a bye and Colorado), so there is a strong probability that the Cougars might be in better shape than the Bruins from an injury standpoint.

    Washington State has a better QB (Jeff Tuel vs. Kevin Prince), better O-line (UCLA has the walking wounded) and better receivers. UCLA has a better running game. The Bruins were ranked 94th in total defensive last year (and that was with Akeem Ayers and Rahim Moore). DE Datone Jones will be back from injury this season to add to a decent line. The Bruin linebackers and secondary can get the job done. 

    The Cougars allowed 220.3 rushing yards per game last year due to an undersized line. They too have decent linebackers and secondary. This game may go into overtime even with UCLA's Rose Bowl home field advantage. The edge goes to UCLA's running game and that overtime field goal. UCLA wins.

Colorado at Stanford

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    Colorado at Stanford

    Saturday, Oct. 8th

     

    Game Prediction: Stanford 49, Colorado 10

    The good news: Dan Hawkins is no longer with the Buffaloes. The bad news: Colorado has Stanford on the schedule (at Stanford). Rookie coach Jon Embree will learn that playing at the Cardinal is like playing at the Buckeyes.

    Colorado lacks big-play guys like Stanford's Andrew Luck, Stepfan Taylor, Chris Owusu, Coby Fleener, Zach Ertz, Chase Thomas, Shayne Skov, Delano Howell, Michael Thomas, etc. The Buff's defensive line is capable, however, there are questions at linebacker and in the secondary. Colorado hasn't had a winning season in six years and, although they won't have one this year, it won't be six more years before they do. Stanford wins. Luck only plays three quarters. 

Arizona at Oregon State

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    Arizona at Oregon State

    Saturday, Oct. 8th

     

    Game Prediction: Arizona 28, Oregon State 17

    Arizona finally gets a break with Oregon State. After playing at Oklahoma State, Stanford, Oregon, and at USC, the Wildcats travel to Reser stadium to play the Beavers. Arizona may be black-and-blue, but they will be looking forward to playing the black and orange.

    The Beavers didn't get off Scot free—they played at Wisconsin and Arizona State but had a bye and UCLA in between. Oregon State has issues at running back, receiver (injuries), defensive line and linebacker. Not even Mike Riley knows how to replace Jacquizz Rodgers. The Beavers will be trying to stop running back Keola Antolin while Nick Foles is finding Juron Criner (if he is playing). Riley can always get the Beavers up for a game and Oregon State will give Arizona a great game in the first half. Arizona wins by 10 or so.

Week 6 Projected Pac-12 North Standings

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    Projected Pac-12 North Standings After Week 6
    Team P-12 North P-12 Conference Overall
    Oregon 1-0  2-0  4-1 
    Stanford  0-0  3-0  5-0 
    California  1-1 1-1  4-1 
    Oregon State  0-0  1-2  2-3 
    Washington State  0-0  0-2  2-3 
    Washington 0-1  0-2  2-3

Week 6 Projected Pac-12 South Standings

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    Projected Pac-12 South Standings After Week 6
    Team P-12 South P-12 Conference Overall
    USC  3-0  3-0  5-0 
    Arizona State  1-1  2-1 4-2 
    Colorado  0-0  1-1 2-4
    UCLA  0-0  1-2  2-4
    Arizona  0-1  1-3  2-4 
    Utah  0-2  1-2  2-3

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