Rich Rodriguez has had the upper hand in this series since arriving in the Pac-12, which makes Arizona a valuable college football underdog pick against Utah Saturday.
Arizona has now won at least eight games in all three years under head coach Rich Rodriguez, which is important to consider when making your NCAA football picks, as it hits the road after picking up a pair of home wins against Colorado and Washington.
The Wildcats are 12-1 during the Rodriguez era when winning the turnover battle, while they’ve managed to outscore opponents 69-12 in points off turnovers during the 2014 campaign. Over the last two-plus seasons, the program is 6-6 SU and 2-10 ATS in the month of November, with the UNDER going 8-4 in that situation.
Utah has participated in three overtime contests during Pac-12 Conference play, which can’t be ignored when looking over the NCAA football odds, but it did managed to snap a two-game losing by outlasting Stanford as 10-point road underdogs last Saturday.
The Utes have been out-gained in their last eight games played, but they may benefit from a weather forecast that suggests rain and potentially snow throughout the game, as they possess a capable running back in Devontae Booker. It’s important to point out that the school is 11-5 SU and 8-8 ATS as favorites in its last 16 opportunities, with the OVER going 8-6 in that stretch.
Gaining Positive Yards
The Wildcats will need a big performance out of their offensive line that enters with 154 career starts—a group that leads the Pac-12 conference for fewest tackles for loss allowed per game at 4.6.
Arizona is capable of moving the football against any stop unit in the country with freshman quarterback Anu Solomon throwing for 25 touchdowns, as the group is second in the country in tallying 273 first downs.
The Utes will have 17 seniors take the field at Rice-Eccles Stadium in Salt Lake City for the last time, which could provide enough energy for the team to cover this number, especially with a defense that leads the nation with 47 total sacks. Utah is also behind just one team in terms of averaging 8.6 tackles for loss per game—a unit that’s led by Nate Orchard’s 1.65 sacks per contest.
I’m going to recommend that readers back the Wildcats as one of their top underdog plays, as the Utes are 6-21 ATS as favorites of 3.5 to 10 points under longtime head coach Kyle Whittingham.
Free College Football Pick: Arizona Wildcats +4 at 5Dimes