Check out the Washington vs. Utah fearless prediction and game preview.
Washington (7-0) vs. Utah (7-1) Game Preview
Date: Saturday, Oct. 29
Game Time: 3:30 pm
Venue: Rice-Eccles Stadium, Salt Lake City, UT
Why Washington Is Going To Win
How do you stop the hottest running back in college football? It helps to have at least seven sure-thing NFL draft picks on your defense.
When it comes to the “Is Washington for real?” question, the jury’s still out considering the schedule so far hasn’t been all that great, but the defense certainly has the talent to gang up on Joe Williams after his massive rushing day against UCLA.
It’s possible to run on the Huskies if you get production out of your quarterback, or if you commit to a sort of hurry-up spread thing like Arizona and Oregon did, but even then, this is group of killers across the Dawg board that swarms around the ball without a problem.
There won’t be the home runs that Williams hit last week.
Offensively, considering what happened last week in L.A., this is Jake Browning’s game.
It took 70 throws to get there, but UCLA’s Mike Fafaul threw for 464 yards and five touchdowns in the shootout against the Utes. Utah’s secondary came up with four picks, but the normally sound pass defense got lit up.
Meanwhile, Browning and the Husky passing game have been devastating. He’s thrown 26 touchdown passes and just two picks on the year, bombing away for well over ten yards per pass with 12 touchdowns and no picks over the last three weeks.
Why Utah Is Going To Win
Washington’s defense comes into the game as the star, but the Utes can play a little D, too.
The Ute defensive front has been a rock against the run, only allowing over 200 yards to USC and doing a terrific job on first and second downs. Washington’s been ultra-efficient and ultra-effective at setting up manageable third down plays, and Browning has taken advantage. Utah doesn’t have a big-time pass rush, but it’s just good enough to generate enough pressure to be annoying.
And then, on the other side, there’s Mr. Williams.
Yeah, the Washington run defense has been terrific, but no one’s tried to go smashmouth on the front seven yet except for Stanford, and 1) it doesn’t do that all that well and 2) the game got out of hand too quickly.
Utah’s offensive line has kicked it in at just the right time, and it’s helped to get Joe Williams back after his four-game retirement. The 5-11, 205-pound senior didn’t do much in his first two games, was done, but game back two weeks ago to run 34 times for 179 yards and a score against Oregon State, and then 29 times for 332 yards and four scores against UCLA.
Second in the nation in time of possession, the Utes need to avoid turnovers and just get Williams going well enough to allow QB Troy Williams to avoid pressing on third downs. Utah doesn’t do a great job of moving the chains, and Williams is hardly a pinpoint passer, but he’s proven and he’s shown he can avoid the big mistakes over the last five games.
In this game, against this defense, being a game manager is a very, very good thing.
What’s Going To Happen?
This is where Washington finally has to deal with a real team that has the right makeup and right toughness to avoid melting down.
Stanford was supposed to be that type of team, but Washington was too talented, too athletic, and too good. Utah has the lines that won’t wear down, and it’s got the tough home field advantage.
Everyone plays at another level at home, and Utah will come up with something special, dragging Washington down into more of a grinding game – helped by a huge punting advantage – that won’t look a thing like the UCLA showdown.
Washington vs. Utah Prediction
Final Score: Utah 27, Washington 24
Line: Washington -9.5, o/u: 52
ATS Confidence: 5: Trump in Alabama – 1: Trump in New York … 4
Must See Rating: 5: Bad Santa 2 – 1: 2016 NFL … 4.5