Since becoming conference rivals with Colorado, Washington State holds the edge, winning three of five meetings straight up and going 3-2 against the spread. The Cougars, questing for their first-ever appearance in the Pac-12 championship game, battle the Buffaloes on Saturday afternoon in Boulder.
College football point spread: The Cougars opened as four-point favorites, according to sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark. (Line updates and matchup report)
College football betting pick, via OddsShark computer: 34.7-27.5 Cougars (College football picks on every game)
Why the Washington State Cougars can cover the spread
Washington State reached 8-1 on the season with a tough 19-13 victory at home over Cal last week. That game was tied at 13-13 late when Cougars quarterback Gardner Minshew connected with Easop Winston for a 10-yard touchdown with 30 seconds left for the game-winning score.
On the evening, Washington State out-gained the Golden Bears 413-291. So the Cougars have now out-gained each of their nine opponents this season.
WSU came up one score short of covering last week as a 7.5-point favorite, but that was the first time this season it failed to cash.
At 5-1 in conference play, Washington State leads the North Division by a half-game over Washington. The Cougars are also now ranked No. 8 in the College Football Playoff rankings.
Why the Colorado Buffaloes can cover the spread
Colorado started 5-0 this season but now shoots to stop a four-game losing skid after falling at Arizona last week 42-34. The Buffaloes led that game 10-0 early and 31-26 in the third quarter. But they gave up a 16-3 Wildcats spurt to fall down by a score, threw an interception inside the Arizona red zone, then allowed the Wildcats to run the final five minutes off the clock.
On the night, Colorado played Arizona even on first downs at 27-27 and held a 31/29 edge in time of possession. But the Buffs turned the ball over twice in the Wildcats red zone and came up with nothing on another drive that reached the Arizona 22-yard line.
Two weeks ago, Colorado led Oregon State 31-3 in the third quarter but let up and lost 41-34 in overtime. Just before that the Buffaloes took Washington to a 17-13 game late, lost 27-13 but covered as 17-point dogs.
At 5-4 overall, Colorado still needs one win in its last three games to become bowl-eligible.
Smart betting pick
Washington State won this matchup last season 28-0 and should win this matchup too. And playing on the road means the spread is a few points friendlier. Smart money here plays the Cougars.
College football betting trends
Washington State is 3-1 ATS in its last four games on the road vs Colorado.
The total has gone under in eight of Colorado's last 11 games.
Colorado is 0-4 SU and 1-3 ATS in its last four games vs its conference.
All college football odds and betting trends according to Bleacher Report's official odds partner, OddsShark. Check out OddsShark on Twitter and Instagram or head to YouTube for more betting picks and analysis on this week's top games. You can also download the free odds tracker app.