Oregon vs. Arizona State Prediction, Game Preview

    Oregon vs. Arizona State prediction and game preview. A Pac-12 battle takes place in Tempe on Thursday night between the Ducks and Sun Devils.

    October 27, 2015


    The Arizona State Sun Devils (4-3) and the Oregon Ducks (4-3) will be looking to remain alive in the divisional races this Thursday in Tempe. Check out the Oregon vs. Arizona State prediction and game preview.

    Oregon vs. Arizona State Game Preview

    Broadcast

    Date: Saturday, October 29
    Game Time: 10:30 ET
    Network: ESPN

    Follow and/or Contact @Rich Cirminiello 

    Why You Need To Care

    In the summer, this looked like a matchup with the potential to profoundly impact the Pac-12 divisional races. And then the losses began mounting for both Oregon and Arizona State, downgrading expectations for 2015.

    With three defeats apiece, the unranked Ducks and Sun Devils have been disappointments through seven games. But these schools have talent and optimism. And while the loser Thursday night will improbably descend back to .500, the winner will remain in division contention at the beginning of November. Considering how rocky this year has been in Tempe and Eugene, that’s more than either team can ask.

    Why Oregon Will Win

    While just about everything this year in Eugene has been unfamiliar, the Ducks are still fast and can still score points, especially now that QB Vernon Adams is closer to full strength. Adams, who broke his finger in Week 1, will be facing a soft Arizona State secondary that’s ninth in Pac-12 pass defense. Oregon, of course, also has access to league-leading rusher Royce Freeman and a dynamite collection of receivers that now includes recently reinstated Darren Carrington.

    Why Arizona State Will Win

    The Sun Devil defensive backfield is flimsy. The Ducks’ unit is actually worse, though, ranking at or near the bottom of the Pac-12 in most statistical areas. It should be a big night for QB Mike Bercovici, who’s becoming more comfortable with his targets. ASU also excels in run defense, yielding just 3.2 yards per carry. Athletic linebackers Antonio Longino, Salamo Fiso and Christian Sam are capable of filling lanes and neutralizing Freeman.

    Player Who Matters

    ASU’s blocking has been unexpectedly sloppy at times this year, resulting in 21 sacks allowed. That’s obviously a concerning reality for Bercovici, who’ll have to dodge the Duck pressure, specifically from DE DeForest Buckner, an All-American contender. And if Buckner draws too much attention, it’s liable to free up LB Tyson Coleman and NT Alex Balducci to flush the pocket.

    What’s Going To Happen?

    In this strange year for Arizona State and Oregon, Adams will help the Ducks relive the past, even if only for a night. Now that the quarterback is healthy, the line is blocking well and the skill position cupboard is fully loaded, the Oregon offense will deliver its best effort of the season. While Bercovici will enjoy some aerial success as well, he’ll fail to match the output of Adams and his weapons.

    Oregon vs. Arizona State Prediction

    Final Score: Oregon 41, Arizona State 31, Line: Arizona State -2.5, o/u: 66
    Must See Rating: 5: Jimi Hendrix: Electric Church ; 1: The Peanuts Movie … 3.5

    MORE: College Football Bowl Projections After Week 8

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