UCLA vs. Oregon odds, prediction, betting trends for Pac-12 showdown

No. 9 UCLA takes on No. 10 Oregon in the latest made-for-TV-clash between Pac-12 contenders at Autzen Stadium in Eugene, Ore., on Saturday.

Game time is scheduled for 3:30 pm ET, and it will be televised on FOX. ESPN’s “College GameDay” will be on campus for pregame festivities, too.

UCLA (6-0) is the lone undefeated team remaining in the Pac-12. The Bruins are finally rolling in Chip Kelly’s fifth season with an offense that averages 41.5 points per game. Quarterback Dorian Thompson-Robinson is playing at a high level, and UCLA had a week to prepare for the matchup against the Ducks.

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Oregon (5-1) also had the week off. The Ducks are working toward the College Football Playoff conversation in Dan Lanning’s first season, and the 49-3 loss to No. 1 Georgia in the opener has been forgiven on some level. This is a chance for transfer quarterback Bo Nix to flex with an offense that averages 42 points per game.

Will this game be as entertaining as last week’s 43-42 thriller between No. 15 Utah 12 USC? That is how a conference stays in the playoff conversation. Here is everything you need to know to bet on UCLA vs. Oregon:

UCLA vs. Oregon odds

  • Spread: Oregon -6
  • Over/under: 69.5
  • Moneyline: Oregon -235, UCLA +190 (Caesars Sportsbook)

The spread has not moved from its open, and the over is a high number with good reason. Five of UCLA’s games and four of Oregon’s have gone over the total this season.The first half total is set at 34.5.

Three trends to know

—The Bruins have won S/U as an underdog twice this season, but those games were at home. UCLA is 8-6-1 ATS as a road underdog with Kelly, and that includes five straight up victories.

— The Ducks are 4-1 ATS in their last five victories, and they have scored 40-plus points in all of those games. That includes three straight covers at Autzen Stadium.

— Kelly is 0-3 against Oregon, where he coached from 2009-12. That includes two losses at Autzen Stadium. The last two losses, however, have each been decided by three points.

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Three things to watch

UCLA’s running game. The Bruins are cruising with a running game that averages 211.5 yards per game behind Thompson-Robinson (231 yards, 4 TDs) and running back Zach Charbonnet (615 yards, 6 TDs). They have combined to average 6.6 yards per carry. Oregon allows 3.7 yards per carry, and half of the eight rushing TDs they allowed were against Georgia. The middle-of-the-field-battle with Oregon linebacker Noah Sewell and Charbonnet should be fun to watch. DTR and Charbonnet combined for 30 carries for 70 yards in last year’s loss.

Dual-threat QB. Nix is ​​nearly 70.4% of his passes, which is nearly 10 points better than his previous season high. The Auburn transfer quarterback has been a difference-maker, especially in the running game. Nix averages 8.3 yards per carry and has 221 rushing yards and five TDs in Oregon’s last two games. Washington transfer Laiatu Latu has been a force off the edge for the Bruins with 6.5 sacks and 7.5 tackles for loss. Can Latu force a few mistakes out of Nix, who likes to improvise outside the pocket?

Leading receivers. This game isn’t just about the running game. Oregon receiver Troy Franklin (27 catches, 429 yards, 3 TDs) and UCLA receiver Jake Bobo (24 catches, 385 yards, 5 TDs) are down-field threats who are active in the red zone. They are their respective quarterbacks’ favorite targets. Which one has the better game? The Bruins have allowed just eight TD passes this season, while the Ducks have allowed 13.

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Stat that matters

Look at the total yardage from the last three meetings: Oregon has a 1,331-1,310 advantage. So what’s been the difference? UCLA has 10 turnovers in those losses, and at least three in each game. Oregon has four total turnovers in those three victories. Thompson-Robinson has thrown just two interceptions this season, and the Bruins have +6 turnover ratio. Oregon is at +3. In a game like this, that turnover differential will be a deciding factor.

UCLA vs. Oregon prediction

This is Kelly’s best chance to beat his former team, and that hinges on Thompson-Robinson and Charbonnet having early success in the running game. Oregon’s going to hammer it right back with Bucky Irving (447 yards, 2 TDs) and Noah Whittington (354 yards, 2 TDs) who don’t get as much fanfare but are part of a dominating rushing attack. It’s a back-and-forth game that the Bruins will lead at half, but Nix continues his hot streak in front of the crowd. A late turnover knocks UCLA off the unbeaten perch and complicates the Pac-12 race a little more.

Final score: Oregon 38, UCLA 35

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