If you are looking for some late Saturday night action in the Pac-12, then the Colorado Buffaloes could be a solid play on the road at a reasonable price visiting Oregon State in Corvallis.
The visiting team could have value in Saturday late night action inside the Pac-12 when those Colorado Buffaloes (3-4, 1-5-1 ATS) seem to take a step down in class to pay a visit to the offensively challenged Oregon State Beavers (2-4, 1-5 ATS) at Reser Stadium in Corvallis, OR at 10:30 ET in a game available on the Pac-12 Network.
The point spread at Pinnacle Sports has Colorado as a very scant underdog for this contest with the current line at +1 with odds of -106.
Step Down in Class?
Colorado began this season 3-1 highlighted by a nice rivalry win at Colorado State, but the Buffaloes have since lost three straight games to fall one game below .500 overall and leave them at 0-3 in Pac-12 play. However, those three losses were to Oregon, Arizona and Arizona State with none of them coming in blowout fashion, and now this assignment at Corvallis seems a bit easier.
Oregon State is 2-4 while being the winning college football pick against the spread just once in those six games, and that was vs. a San Jose State team that has struggled offensively almost as badly as these Beavers have this year. And while their 0-3 conference mark matches that of Colorado, the Beavers have not been as competitive with those Pac-12 losses coming by an average of -25.3 points!
Oregon State was offensively potent during the four years that Sean Mannion was at quarterback, but Mannion is now in the NFL with the St. Louis Rams and the Beavers have quickly gone from having a good Pac-12 offense to having one of the worst offenses in the nation! The Beavers are 106th out of 128 FBS teams in scoring with 21.7 points per game and 116th in total offense with 332.7 yards per contest.
To put that yardage figure in perspective, Mannion passed for that many yards alone many times during his stay in Corvallis, while the 2015 Oregon State team is ranked 118th in the country with its 145.5 passing yards per game. Then again, they do have a freshman at quarterback in Seth Collins that has completed an ugly 51.7 percent of his passes while averaging just 5.5 yards per attempt with a modest six touchdown throws vs. four picks.
And the defense has not really been much better ranking 103rd in scoring defense allowing 33.5 points per game and 85th in total defense surrendering 414.7 yards per encounter.
Wrong Team Favored?
Now, we are not claiming that the Buffaloes are juggernauts or anything like that, but we do feel they should be slightly favored here as while the defensive numbers for both these teams are nearly identically bad, Colorado had the far superior offense and it is a well balanced one.
The Buffaloes are averaging 31.6 points while ranking a very respectable 36th in the country in total offense with 447.9 yards per game, and they rank 40th in passing offense with 256.1 yards and 43rd in rushing offense at 191.7 yards per contest. That kind of balance would be difficult for even a good defense to defend, let alone a poor one like Oregon State possesses.
Also these teams have had one common opponent in Arizona. Colorado gave the Wildcats all that they can handle while losing just 38-31 last week, while that same Arizona squad pummeled the Beavers 44-7 two weeks ago!
Not Responding Well to Adversity
Finally, when Oregon State goes bad, it usually stays bad as the Beavers are 1-7 ATS in their last eight games following a loss by more than 20 points and also an identical 1-7 ATS in their last eight games after allowing more than 450 total yards in their previous game. Oregon State is also 0-5 ATS in its last five Pac-12 Conference games overall.
So while neither of these teams is a world-beater, Colorado still appears to have the edge, especially offensively, so back the Buffaloes on the road visiting Oregon State in this late night Saturday contest.
College Football Pick: Colorado +1 (-106)