By 750 THE GAME STAFF,
Each week our staff at 750 The Game and fellow Pac-12 experts predict the score of every Oregon Ducks game. This week the Oregon Ducks (8-1) are at home hosting the USC Trojans (7-3) at Autzen Stadium. The Vegas line has Oregon -15 1/2.
There have been a few times this season that Oregon (8-1) has arrived at the stadium with laser-like focus. The games vs. Colorado and Utah come to mind. This one has that feel to me. I think USC is going to get ambushed. The Trojans have Caleb Williams so they’ll score a little, but the Ducks are hunting for a College Football Playoff berth and playing against an opponent that pretty much saw its hopes to win a conference title evaporate last week. I think the Ducks win comfortably.
Oregon 42, USC 24
The second of two marquee matchups has all the trappings of a lopsided affair. Oregon should score at will against USC’s turnstile defense, but how will Caleb Williams and Co. perform? That depends on the Trojans’ offensive line, which must carve running lanes and give Williams time to throw. We can’t help but recall USC’s inept showing on the line of scrimmage at Notre Dame a few weeks ago. The Ducks should have similar success, leading to more frustration for the reigning Heisman Trophy winner.
Pick: Oregon -15.5
USC’s offense will score points; Caleb Williams and Lincoln Riley still know how to light up a scoreboard. I think USC’s mediocre offensive line will have some issues with Oregon’s front four, who are deep and talented. As for the Trojans slowing down this Oregon offense, good luck.
Oregon 48, USC 28
Oregon has faced one above average passing offense in terms of throwing the ball down the field. That was Washington. That was a loss. USC is ninth in the nation in pass yards per attempt. Caleb Williams is the best in the nation at holding on to the ball and making a play down the field. The Oregon secondary will be tested big time on Saturday. I know the Trojans defense is bad. But firing Alex Grinch and putting Brian Odom in there should give USC the one game bump they need to keep the game close. Oregon wins. I also love being on an island in this one. I haven’t heard one person say they like USC in this game. That’s the island I want to be on.
Oregon 41, USC 35
I could either see Caleb Williams single-handedly keeping USC in the game into the fourth quarter, or leaving the game with injury in the first half thanks to Oregon’s relentless pass rush. Does he play with a renewed sense of freedom now that his Heisman and College Football Playoff hopes are completely gone? Or is he just moments away from folding up shop for the year? This is Oregon’s last big chance to make national headlines before the Civil War on Nov. 24th. I think they do just that, and Williams doesn’t finish the game.
Oregon 50, USC 17