Wildcats want to rebound against Cardinal
After a week off, Arizona returns to Pac-12 action tonight vs. Stanford. But will Rich Rodriguez’s gang still present the same despondent product out West?
The Wildcats try to snap a four-game losing skid beginning at 11 p.m. ET. According to online sports book BetDSI, David Shaw’s bunch opened as a 7-point favorite. The over/under is 49.5.
Things in Tucson started promisingly enough, with Arizona taking back-to-back tilts against Grambling State and Hawaii. Then a wave of injuries arrived, prompting utter disarray in the desert. Rodriguez lost his top two quarterbacks and star rusher Nick Wilson at basically the same time. It doesn’t help that the Wildcats seemingly can’t stop anyone, either, ranking 114th in the country in total defense.
The Cardinal’s problems are plentiful, too. Shockingly, the perennial conference heavyweight enters the weekend last in the FBS in total offense with 299.1 yards per tilt. Desperately looking for some kind of spark, Shaw’s switching to junior Kelly Chryst as the starting signal-caller. Fifth-year senior Ryan Burns threw for 1,058 yards, five touchdowns and interceptions while going 4-3 as the main man under center.
Such a change may wind up being inconsequential, however, if Christian McCaffrey can’t turn it around in the backfield. The 2015 Heisman Trophy runner-up failed to suit up against Notre Dame on Oct. 15 and eked out 92 yards in Boulder last Saturday. Still, he draws an unbelievably favorable opponent here. Expect Shaw to ride the all-purpose threat to just Stanford’s second triumph in over a month.
SATURDAY NCAA FREE PICK: STANFORD/ARIZONA UNDER 49.5 POINTS