Pick Home Fave UCLA ATS vs. Stanford for Rivalry Weekend

Wednesday, November 26, 2014 7:44 PM UTC

Wednesday, Nov. 26, 2014 7:44 PM UTC

I believe the phrase is “ships passing in the night.”  While Stanford is suffering the worst season in 4 years under HC Shaw, UCLA is continuing their 3 year revival under Head Coach Mora. Find out who we like for our college football pick. 

Stanford vs. UCLA (-5) 3:30 ET ABC
At 6-5 SU, Stanford has already become eligible for the Bowl game.  Yet, at this time of year, they are considering a much larger prize!  For UCLA, this victory clinches the PAC 12 South and an opportunity to meet Oregon in the PAC 12 title game.

It has been an incredible multiple-year run for the Stanford Cardinal. The previous 3 years of this surge were under the guidance of current HC Shaw. Entering this season, Stanford was on a 4-year run of 46-8 SU and 35-18 ATS.  A stable factor in that ascent has been a sub-20 point defense that allowed less than 350 YPG in the pass-crazed PAC 12. Along with a ground game that in 3 out of 4 years averaged at least 208/5.0 overland, the Cardinal looked like an anomaly (more resembling a Big 10 powerhouse) in the PAC 12. This season, the defense has remained staunch. The Cardinal still allows just 17 PPG, 113/3.2 overland, 290 YPG and just 4.2 YP play. As such, it is never easy to fade them in this role of Defensive Dog in a series where they have won the previous 6 games. Last week, Stanford soared over my California selection, when they profited from a +4 net TO margin. But, the 418-310 yardage edge, hardly spoke to the 38-17 final score. The true reason for the Cardinal decline has been an impotent offense whose ground attack has declined to 150/4.3. With much less to play for than usual at this time of year, we may not see Stanford’s best effort today.

We know we certainly will get the best from UCLA. This is to clinch the PAC 12 South title with the right to play Oregon for the conference crown. My only concern is the pressure of that situation in the role of favorite. Mora has done an amazing job in reestablishing the Bruins as a force on the West Coast.  In his 2 previous years at the helm, UCLA has gone 19-8 SU, 17-10 ATS. With a balanced 16 RS, led by prolific QB Hundley, the Bruins were expected to immediately contend for PAC 12 superiority. Perhaps a case of senioritis led to a stumble out of the gate. Through the end of October, it appeared they were sleepwalking against a group of teams who did not challenge them.  As a favorite in 7 of those games, UCLA responded by going 6-2 SU, but just 1-7 ATS.   But when the calendar turned to November and the season was on the line, the Bruins have responded.  They enter today winners of 5 straight games and, at lower price points, covering their last 3 contests.  That includes last week’s 38-20 rivalry win against USC in which they outgained the Trojans 461-276. 

Today, the Trojans come as the far more motivated team and in better current form.  Six time revenge, combined with the motivation of a division championship and a recent 5-0 SU, 3-0 ATS record, to make UCLA easy an easier than expected double digit victor today, covering college football odds. Take them for your college football picks.

Free College Football Pick: UCLA -5.5 at 5Dimes

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