Utah vs. Stanford fearless prediction and game preview.
Date: Saturday, October 6
Game Time: 10:30 ET
Venue: Stanford Stadium, Palo Alto, CA
Utah (2-2) vs. Stanford (4-1) Game Preview
One Reason Why Utah Will Win
Does desperation count for anything?
Utah’s season isn’t over, but it’s on life support if it goes 0-3 in the Pac-12 with an offense that can’t do anything quite right against an FBS team. With Stanford coming off the loss to Notre Dame, this is where the Utes have to rise up and play their best game of the year.
Things might be tough on the offensive side, but the defense has done its part, especially against the run. It has yet to get rumbled over – Washington managed 172 yards, but that was it – and gave up a grand total of zero net yards on the ground in the loss to Washington State last week.
This isn’t going to be the week Bryce Love and the Cardinal running game figure it all out.
They just can’t get this dog to hunt. Everyone is loading up to slow down No. 20 and forcing the passing game to get the job done – with limited success. Love has just 327 yards on the year – he ran for 301 on Arizona State alone last year – and Utah’s defensive front will be all over him.
If he plays and is okay. He banged up his ankle and is questionable.
The D will keep this close on the road. But …
One Reason Why Stanford Will Win
Utah was supposed have a passing game now after tweaking the offense last season, but the receivers haven’t been coming through.
Tyler Huntley isn’t connecting on much down the field in Pac-12 play, and worst off all, after four touchdown passes in the opener against Weber State, how many does he have in his last three games?
For a team with a sputtering offense on the road, it needs all the help it can get from some easy mistakes going its way. It could use a few key turnovers, but Stanford is No. 1 in the Pac-12 in turnover margin. Love might not be doing all that well, but there haven’t been any lost fumbles so far.
And Utah is last in the conference in turnover margin.
If Stanford can get up early and force Utah to press, the offense that’s averaging 16 points per game against FBS teams won’t be able to come through.
What’s Going To Happen
Both offenses are so mediocre that this will turn into an interesting game deep into the second half.
Utah won’t be able to get over the hump and come through with the second half scoring drive it needs to take control. Once again, the Ute O line won’t be able to keep a defense out of the backfield.
Stanford won’t do anything amazing, but the KJ Costello downfield deep jump ball plays will work just enough to stay unbeaten in the Pac-12.
Fearless Prediction & Line
Stanford 23, Utah 16
Line: Stanford -5, o/u: 46
ATS Confidence out of 5: 4
Must See Rating: 3
5: First Man
1: ESPN’s Monday Night Football broadcast