No. 12 Arizona will host No. 13 Arizona State on Friday in a Territorial Cup battle that could very well determine the Pac-12 South’s representative in the conference championship game. The Wildcats have won three consecutive contests and another victory – along with a UCLA loss to Stanford – would see Rich Rodriguez’s team punch its ticket to the title tilt against Oregon. However, Arizona has lost two straight and three of the last four meetings in the series.
Arizona State also needs the Bruins to fall to the Cardinal in order to reach the Dec. 5 Pac-12 Championship Game at Levi’s Stadium. The Sun Devils have won six out of their last seven games, but their unexpected loss to unranked Oregon State on Nov. 15 took them out of the driver’s seat in the division. Arizona State has lit up the scoreboard in its last two meetings with Arizona – scoring 99 combined points – and hopes for more of the same as it looks to advance to its second straight Pac-12 title tilt.
TV: 3:30 p.m. ET, FOX Sports 1.
LINE HISTORY: The lines have not moved from their opening mark of Arizona -2.5 and 62.5.
INJURY REPORT: Arizona State – WR Jaelen Strong (Prob-Concussion), DB Ezekiel Bishop (Ques-Knee), DL Jaxon Hood (Ques-Personal) Arizona – QB Anu Solomon (Ques-Ankle), S Trevor Emisch (Ques-Arm), LB DeAndre Miller (Ques-Shoulder)
WEATHER FORECAST: Clear sunny skies are expected for the game. Temperatures should hit a high of 80°F and winds gusting to five mph.
WHAT CAPPERS SAY: “After five straight Unders in this series from 2005-2009, the Over has since gone 3-1 the past four years. Both offenses have key players battling injuries this week as Arizona State WR Jaelen Strong (71 receptions / 982 yards) is dealing with a concussion, while Arizona QB Anu Solomon (25 TD / 3216 yards) has an ankle injury. Both teams have balanced attacks and are pretty equal offensively this season as Arizona State is +10.8 points per game and +0.4 yards per play, while Arizona is +11.6 ppg and +0.4 yppl versus their opponents.” – Covers Expert Steve Merril
WHAT BOOKS SAY: “Line has remained Arizona -2.5 all week and it appears the decision on the game will be very small for shop, as 53 percent of cash is on the Wildcats.” – Mike Jerome of TopBet.eu
ABOUT ARIZONA STATE (9-2 SU, 6-5 ATS, 5-6 O/U): Taylor Kelly went 15-of-25 for 232 yards and four touchdowns in the 52-31 win over Washington State. D.J. Foster – who is the only active FBS running back to gain 900 rushing yards and over 500 receiving yards this season – ran for three touchdowns versus the Cougars. Jaelen Strong – who leads the team with 71 receptions for 982 yards and nine touchdowns – is expected to return to the lineup after missing the Washington State game with a concussion.
ABOUT ARIZONA (9-2 SU, 4-7 ATS, 3-8 O/U): Freshman quarterback Anu Solomon accounted for 180 yards and a touchdown before sitting out the second half with an ankle injury in the 42-10 win over Utah and his status for Friday’s game in uncertain. Nick Wilson was named the Pac-12 Offensive Player of the Week after rushing for a career-high 218 yards and three touchdowns versus the Utes. Wilson has scored three touchdowns in each of his last two games and became the only freshman in program history to top the 1,000 yard mark (1,085) in a single season.
*Sun Devils are 4-1 ATS vs. a team with a winning record.
*Wildcats are 2-9 ATS in their last 11 games following a S.U. win.
*Under is 6-0 in Sun Devils last 6 games following a ATS win.
*Underdog is 8-2 ATS in their last 10 meetings.
COVERS CONSENSUS: 60.62 percent of Covers users are backing Arizona -2.5 with 65.8 percent taking the over.