Last week wasn’t the most successful in this department — three out of five isn’t terrible, but not great — though we did correctly predict the exact score of the UW-Stanford game, so hey, that’s something.
On to this week’s picks, with every Pac-12 team in action this weekend. All lines are from VegasInsider.com. Our pick for the UW-Oregon game will come Friday.
Arizona at USC, Thursday, 7:30 p.m., FOX Sports 1 (USC by 6) — The Ed Orgeron era begins in Los Angeles, where the Trojans will try to salvage what has already been a disappointing season. USC’s defense was supposed to be its strength, but a 62-point outing by ASU two weeks ago may have exposed a few (or many) flaws there. Still think USC is good enough to win this one at home against an Arizona team that hasn’t done much to impress. USC 24, Arizona 17.
Stanford at Utah, Saturday, 3 p.m., Pac-12 Networks (Stanford by 8.5) — Wouldn’t be surprised if this one came down to the fourth quarter, if not the final few minutes. The Utes are better than they were last year, though probably not quite good enough to pull off an upset of this magnitude. Expecting it to be close, though. Stanford 31, Utah 24.
Colorado at Arizona State, Saturday, 7 p.m., Pac-12 Networks (ASU by 26) — What looked to be a fairly promising season for the Sun Devils is on shaky ground after losses to Stanford and Notre Dame, but ASU shouldn’t have any trouble dispatching the Buffaloes at home. ASU 49, Colorado 16.
California at UCLA, Saturday, 7:30 p.m., ESPN2 (UCLA by 25) — Not much intrigue to this one, as the Bears’ struggles have been compounded by a handful of injuries to key defensive players. Going to be a long season in Berkeley, and a long day at the Rose Bowl. UCLA 52, Cal 20.
Oregon State at Washington State, 7:30 p.m., ESPNU (WSU by 1) — This is a huge game for both teams. WSU can get to 5-2 with a win, which would put the Cougars’ first bowl appearance since 2003 within arm’s reach. And the Beavers are looking for their fifth consecutive victory after dropping their season opener at home to Eastern Washington. Should be a good environment in Pullman — Martin Stadium is sold out, it’s Dad’s Weekend, and the Cougars are playing as well as they have in years. Plus, both quarterbacks — Connor Halliday and Sean Mannion — have been piling up big passing numbers recently. Could be a fun one to watch. WSU 38-34.
Christian Caple can be reached at email@example.com. Twitter: @ChristianCaple