Saturday, September 15 at 10:00 PM ET
No. 10 Washington looks to improve on offense when they open Pac-12 play in an exciting game against Utah next Saturday.
Washington got back on track after a close 21-16 loss in their season opener against Auburn by beating North Dakota 45-3 last Saturday. Jake Browning threw for 313 yards and two touchdowns as the Huskies had 632 total yards and kept the chains moving by going 8-for-15 on 3rd down. Six different players had at least three receptions for Washington, including Ty Jones, who caught four passes for 76 receiving yards and two touchdowns.
Despite the win, it's clear there are areas of improvement for this team, for example the running game, as they had just 79 rushing yards in the first three quarters before pulling away late. Jake Browning also has to play better, he threw two interceptions against North Dakota and he has three already. Look for Browning to keep trying to find Aaron Fuller, who has emerged as his top target with 13 catches for 204 receiving yards in two games.
Utah is coming off a hard-fought 17-6 win at Northern Illinois last Saturday. Britain Covey tied a career-high with 129 receiving yards on eight catches but the offense struggled and couldn't put away the game until the very end.
The Utah defense limited Northern Illinois to just 228 total yards but their lack of scoring is concerning ahead of Washington's visit. Putting up points will be complicated as their leading rusher Zack Moss is questionable to play on Saturday after leaving last week's game due to an injury. Moss had 66 rushing yards on 16 carries and he scored Utah's only offensive touchdown. Tyler Huntley completed 20 of 31 passes for 286 passing yards but he was sacked six times.
The Utes are 0-5 in their last five games against ranked opponents and the Huskies beat them 33-30 last season after rallying for 10 points in the final 58 seconds. Utah has also lost 11 of their last 14 games against Top 10 opponents.
College Football Trends:
The Washington Huskies are:
6-2 ATS in their last eight games after accumulating more than 280 yards passing in their previous game
8-3 ATS in their last 11 conference games
5-2 ATS in their last seven games following an ATS loss
The Utah Utes are:
5-12 ATS in their last 17 games after allowing less than 170 yards passing in their previous game
Washington is more battle-tested, as Utah played an FCS opponent and a mid-tier mid-major team on the road. Jake Browning has a lot to improve but he's shown an ability to make big plays.
The Utah offense operated well between the 20s against Northern Illinois but a lack of finishing drives against Washington would be costly and not having Moss to balance their offense would make things even more difficult.
Washington is 4-1 in five Pac-12 games against Utah, winning both games in Salt Lake City. The Huskies have enough offensive firepower to correct any mistakes they've made in the first two weeks and Browning can lead them to a win and cover.
College Football Pick: Washington -5 (-110) at Jazz Sports
Check odds here: https://goo.gl/dVwAAb
Odds as seen on ESPN Chalk: https://goo.gl/ji6GJZ