Prediction, Preview, and Odds
#173 Stanford vs.
#174 Oregon
Saturday, October 1, 2022 at 11:00pm EDT
Written by Mark Ruelle

There will be PAC-12 football on Saturday night as the Stanford Cardinal take their 1-2 record to Eugene, OR to battle the 3-1 Oregon Ducks. The Cardinal come into the matchup fresh off of a 40-22 loss to #18 Washington in their second conference game on Saturday. Meanwhile, the Ducks come into this game riding high following a thrilling come-from-behind win over Washington State on the road Saturday. The opening kick is scheduled for 11:00pm EST.

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Ranking the Cardinal Schedule

The Stanford Cardinal lost for the second time in a row against a ranked PAC 12 opponent, this time the #18th ranked Washington Huskies, 40-22 on Saturday night. Stanford fell to 1-2 with the loss and now will face their third-straight ranked opponent this week when they battle Oregon. The Cardinal have now lost eight straight games to PAC 12 opponents.

“You’d love to play against this team with your starters at full strength, especially on the offensive line. And we weren’t able to do that,” Stanford head coach David Shaw said to AP after the loss.

Stanford quarterback Tanner McKee was sacked eight times in the game and finished 17-of-26 for 286 yards and three touchdowns. The Cardinal fell behind 17-0 before McKee connected for his first touchdown of the game near halftime. Down big late, McKee threw two touchdowns in the fourth quarter with the game out of reach. Wide receiver Michael Wilson had six catches for 176 yards on the night. Stanford's offense has taken a number of hits already this season. Running back E.J. Smith is out for the year with an injury, guard Branson Bragg walked away from the game due to concussion issues and both starting tackles are still listed as questionable heading into the Oregon game.

Stanford's defense allowed 478 yards of total offense, including 309 yards through the air. They allowed 23 first downs and 6-of-15 third down conversions. For the night, the Cardinal had four tackles for loss but did not get a sack nor did they create any turnovers.

At just 1-2 and with countless injuries on the offensive end, it has been a tough start for the Cardinal heading into Oregon. Offensively, the Cardinal ranks 81st in points per game and 61st in total offense. Stanford is 65th in rushing offense and 56th in passing offense. The team's injuries and departures on the offensive line has hampered the team's offensive effectiveness. On the defensive side of the ball, Stanford is 114th in scoring defense and 121st in total defense. The Cardinal are ranked 85th against the run and 123rd against the pass. Lastly, the Cardinal are ranked dead last in turnover differential thus far this season.

Ducks Quacking

The Oregon Ducks return home triumphantly after escaping Washington State with a 44-41 victory on Saturday afternoon. Down by 12 with less than four minutes to play, Oregon exploded for three-straight touchdowns in under three minutes and hung on for a 44-41 victory in front of a shocked Cougar home crowd. Head coach Dan Lanning picked up his first Pac-12 win in conference play in a thrilling manner.

"They came out ready to compete, and they caught us off-guard; in a lot of ways they outperformed us a lot of the day," Lanning said in his post-game press conference. "But there was enough time on the clock. … Our guys got a win. And they earned a win. They battled all the way to the end."

Oregon quarterback Bo Nix had a huge day, completing 33-of-44 passes for 428 yards and three touchdowns. He overcame a rough first half that included a pick-six that helped the Cougars to a 17-9 halftime lead. Nix would gain his revenge with two fourth-quarter touchdown passes, one to Cam McCormick and the other to Troy Franklin with just 1:21 to play in the game. Oregon finished the game with an impressive 628 yards of total offense.

Defensively, the Ducks were solid in the first half as the offense struggled and culminated the game with a pick-six courtesy of lineman Mase Funa. Funa picked off a screen pass and raced 27 yards for a touchdown to assure the Ducks of a win. The Ducks defense held the Cougars to just 53 yards rushing and had two interceptions on the day. The Ducks had 11 tackles for loss in the game and four sacks as well.

The Ducks seem to have settled things after an opening week loss to a dominant Georgia team. The Ducks are now ranked 13th heading into the thick of Pac-12 conference play. Offensively, Oregon is ranked 56th in scoring offense and 28th in total offense. The Ducks have the 44th ranked rushing offense and the 35th ranked passing offense. Defensively, Oregon is ranked 101st in scoring defense and 106th in total defense. Against the pass, the Ducks are just 130th in the country while they are 8th against the run. Finally, the Ducks are ranked 85th in turnover differential.

 

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Full-Game Side Bet

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This is the toughest stretch of football during David Gray's tenure at Stanford. He has an offensive line that is completely dismantled with injuries, missing his projected starting guard and likely to miss both starting tackles this week. Oregon is extremely vulnerable against the pass but the Cardinal will need time to throw the ball. Last week, the Cardinal offensive line allowed nine sacks and now match up with the Ducks, who while they only rank 78th in sacks per game, should be able to exploit the Cardinal's weakness. Nix and the Ducks high powered offense should have a field day against Stanford's 123rd ranked passing unit in this one as the Ducks continue their march back towards the top ten after being manhandled by Georgia to start the season. With all the injuries, this is not your typical Cardinal team. Last season, Stanford upset Oregon in Stanford in overtime. This year, the Cardinal just do not have the tools to pull off that kind of upset. Just a few seasons ago, it would be unfathomable that the Cardinal would be such a dog on the road, this season, the dog role fits.

Lay the points and take the Ducks.

Prediction: Oregon -17

Full-Game Total Pick

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Rating:

This line is high but the Ducks thrive on this surface. They are 4-0 to the over in their last four games on field turf. The Ducks have played to this number in two of their four games and both games were on turf. Stanford's defense is uncharacteristically poor, specifically the team's pass defense and they will be susceptible to the Ducks' attack. Meanwhile, Oregon's defense has not exactly shined this season with the 130th ranked pass defense. Given some time, which will be hard to come by with the state of the Cardinal offensive line, Stanford will get opportunities to take shots. They will get some big plays in this one that will help this one towards the total.

Take the over, 63.5 points.

Prediction: Over 63.5
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Written By Mark Ruelle , "Mark Ruelle"

Mark has been a sports fanatic since childhood. He is also an avid follower of sports analytics and has used it in his own betting analysis for over two decades. Now we have Mark on our team here at Stat Salt. He holds degrees in marketing, broadcasting, and English and uses this vast array of assets to dissect and analyze game matchups. Mark will provide you with a wide variety of statistics to consider and a strong opinion in each matchup that he covers. Please follow him daily for an up-to-the-minute analysis of all the important games.