Two of the most disappointing teams in the Pac-12 meet Friday as Oregon visits California, which is looking to bounce back from a surprising 47-44 overtime loss at Oregon State on Oct. 8. The Ducks are off to their worst start in 30 years and bring a four-game losing streak into the contest, but they’ve won their last seven straight matchups against Cal.
Oregon appeared to be a team in disarray following the Washington rout two weeks ago, when the Ducks allowed Huskies quarterback Jake Browning to throw for 304 yards and a school-record six touchdowns. “We’ve got some guys on our team who are busting their tails to win and other guys on our team that don’t even care if we win or lose,” senior offensive lineman Cameron Hunt told the Register-Guard. “I don’t think everyone is bought-in.” The Ducks will look to come together against the inconsistent Golden Bears, who beat Texas and Utah but allowed Oregon State to rush for 474 yards and record its first conference win in nearly two years. Friday’s contest figures to feature plenty of offense with both teams allowing at least 40 points per game while ranked among the worst in the country in several defensive categories.
TV: 10:30 p.m. ET, ESPN.
LINE HISTORY: Cal opened as 2.5-point home favorites and have been bet up to -3. The total is the remarkable number here, with oddsmakers opening it at a sky high 87.5 and bettors haven’t thought that was high enough, moving the line number up to 89.5. It is the highest total in ever. Check out the complete line history here.
WEATHER REPORT: It should be a beautiful night for football in Berkley, California. The forecast is calling for clear skies with temperatures in the low 60’s for the game. There will be a slight five-to-six ile per hour wind gusting towards the southest end zone early on, but shuold die off as teh game goes along.
Oregon – RB R. Freeman (probable Friday, leg), DL J. Jelks (questionable Friday, knee), OL Z. Okun (questionable Friday, concussion), WR D. Stanford (doubtful Friday, undisclosed).
Cal – WR C. Hansen (probable Friday, foot), QB D. Webb (probable Friday, hand), DTnL. Bequette (out for season, knee), RB V. Enwere (out for season, knee).
ABOUT OREGON (2-4, 0-5-1 ATS, 4-2 O/U): Freshman quarterback Justin Herbert is expected to make his second career start after completing 62 percent of his passes and throwing for 179 yards and a pair of touchdowns with one interception against the stellar Washington defense. The Ducks boast the league’s top running game at 257.8 yards per game, and Friday’s gameplan figures to be filled with a heavy dose of Royce Freeman, Tony Brooks-James and Jarret LaCoste against the porous Cal run defense. Oregon has a number of freshmen starting on both sides of the ball, including linebacker Troy Dye, who ranks second on the team with 30 tackles.
ABOUT CAL (3-3, 3-3 ATS, 5-1 O/U): Last week’s bye came at a good time for quarterback Davis Webb, who averages 376 passing yards with 22 touchdowns and seven interceptions but was limited against Oregon State with a hand injury. Webb is expected to start against Oregon along with receiver Chad Hansen, a former walk-on who has 59 catches for 770 yards and eight touchdowns and hopes to play through an ankle injury. While the defense continues to struggle without several injured starters, Cal featured a balanced offensive attack against Oregon State as Tre Watson and Khalfani Muhammad rushed for a combined 299 yards.
* Oregon is 0-7-1 ATS in its last eight games overall.
* Cal is 1-6 ATS in its last seven home games vs. a team with a losing road record.
* Over is 6-0 in Oregon’s last six conference games.
* Over is 7-1 in Cal’s last eight games overall.
COVERS CONSENSUS: The public is strongly backing Cal in this Pac-12 matchup, with 70 percent of wagers on the Golden Bears. As for the total, with a number so high the public is on the Under. Sixty-one percent of wagers are on the Under.
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