Stanford at UCLA
Saturday, 5 pm PT - ABC
CRIS Opener: Stanford -2 O/U 48
CRIS Current: Stanford -3 O/U 46
Less than a year ago, UCLA and Stanford met in Palo Alto with the Cardinal rolling to a 56-35 win. Both teams combined for 948 yards and nearly 7 yards per play. The total in that game closed 56. This year's matchup has been significantly adjusted; CRIS opened 48 and bet down to 46.5/46. There's no doubt been some personnel changes and UCLA has undergone a transformation on offense with coordinator Kennedy Polamalu running more of a traditional, huddle-up offense. That said, both squads still have the ability to move the football and put points on the board.
Last week, Stanford rolled up 302 yards on the ground and 6.52 yards per play in its 27-10 win over dumpster fire USC. In typical Cardinal fashion, with a late lead, they were content to sit on the ball and as a result, the fourth quarter didn't feature a single point.
UCLA's offense hasn't looked sharp with the exception of a second half run in a 34-21 Week 1 loss at Texas A&M. Quarterback Josh Rosen has struggled at times and the conservative play calling has been heavily chastised by the media. The capabilities are there as Rosen has a number of quality skill position players to work with. The unit is clearly going through a transition and must find its way in a hurry with PAC-12 play now underway.
If you're looking at the small sample of this year's results from both teams, the under appears to be a no brainer. Yes, the game will feature plenty of punts and three-and-outs, but the total certainly represents that and some. Stanford's total Week 1 was 49 against ultra-conservative Kansas State. Against USC, 48.5. UCLA's total against offensively-inept BYU closed 50.5. And yet here we see not only an adjustment with an opener of 48 but the markets driving it down to as low as 46. I think both teams have the ability to put together multiple scoring drives which provides us value on this ultra-low total.