Washington vs Stanford: College Football Odds, Picks, Betting Preview

Washington vs Stanford: College Football Odds, Picks, Betting Preview article feature image

Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images

  • Stanford welcomes Washington to Palo Alto for a Pac-12 matchup.
  • While the Cardinal have been eliminated from division-winner contention, the Huskies keep hope alive with a win.
  • Check out Darin Gardner's breakdown of the game and analysis for his pick, below.

Washington vs. Stanford Odds

Saturday, Oct. 30
10:30 p.m. ET
Washington Odds
-110o / -110u
Stanford Odds
-110o / -110u
Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute college football odds here.

This matchup on Saturday night will feature two teams that have each taken steps back from some impressive seasons over the past decade.

Washington entered the year as one of the favorites in the Pac-12 conference title race but sits at 3-4 overall and 2-2 in conference play. Since Jimmy Lake took over at head coach after Chris Petersen retired, the Huskies are 6-5 and have struggled to move the ball consistently on offense.

There wasn't much expected out of Stanford going into the season, with a win total of just four. Compared to those expectations, the Cardinal has been better, sitting at 3-4 after seven games.

This program had been one of the most consistent squads in the conference for years under coach David Shaw, but it hasn't managed to hit double-digit wins since 2016.

Stanford doesn't have much of a chance in the Pac-12 race at this point, with three conference losses under its belt. Washington still has a prayer, but a loss here would likely be the nail in the coffin for any conference championship hopes.

Both teams come with significant holes and look evenly matched, but does either side have an edge that it can exploit?

Washington Huskies

Washington Offense

This Huskies offense got off to a horrendous start this season, managing just 17 total points in its first two games en route to an 0-2 start.

While it has improved since then, it hasn't exactly lit the world on fire either. Washington has only eclipsed 5.5 yards per play once, and that came against an Arkansas State defense that is allowing the second-most points per game in college football.

The ground game has really struggled for the Huskies, ranking 106th in Expected Points Added (EPA) per carry.

Veteran Sean McGrew has taken the majority of attempts in his fifth year with the Huskies, but he has averaged just 3.7 yards per tote this season. The most efficient member of the backfield has been Kamari Pleasant, but he has only received double-digit carries in one game.

Through the air, Washington hasn't gotten much from quarterback Dylan Morris. Among 138 quarterbacks with at least 100 dropbacks, Morris' 64.8 PFF passing grade ranks 98th, with the passing offense overall ranking 75th in Success Rate.

The offensive line has also struggled, ranking 103rd in pressure rate.

However, one bright spot for this offense has been receiver Terrell Bynum, who leads all Pac-12 receivers in passer rating when targeted, per PFF, and ranks third in the conference in yards per catch.

Washington Defense

There has been a big gap between this team's ability to defend the run and pass. The Huskies have been elite in the secondary, ranking third in PFF coverage grade and second in yards allowed per coverage snap.

At cornerback, Trent McDuffie and Kyler Gordon rank 10th and 11th in the nation in PFF coverage grade, occupying the top two spots in the Pac-12 specifically. McDuffie has allowed a grand total of 48 yards into his coverage this season for 2.7 yards per target, and Gordon has allowed just 13 receptions on 215 coverage snaps.

While the secondary has been dominant, the run defense has struggled for the Huskies, ranking 85th in Rushing Success Rate allowed.

Luckily for Washington, though, Stanford has been just as bad trying to move the ball on the ground as the Huskies have been at defending it.

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Stanford Cardinal

Stanford Offense

The matchup on the ground when Stanford has the ball will definitely be a weakness-on-weakness situation, considering the Cardinal rank 110th in Rushing Success Rate and 121st in Stuff Rate.

There are 20 Pac-12 running backs with at least 50 carries on the season, and Stanford's duo of Nathaniel Peat and Austin Jones rank 16th and 20th, respectively, among that group in PFF rushing grade.

The passing attack hasn't been great but has been comfortably better than the ground game. At quarterback, Tanner McKee ranks 74th in PFF passing grade with an average depth of target that barely ranks inside the top 100.

McKee has had some good games here and there, but the passing game just hasn't been great overall. To be fair to him, though, he's not getting much help from his offensive line, which ranks 93rd in PFF pass-blocking grade.

Stanford Defense

Stanford has a big gap between its run defense and pass defense just like Washington, but the secondary hasn't been the dominant unit that the Huskies have. It's been great at limiting big plays there, ranking 10th in explosive pass rate allowed and 44th in overall yards allowed per attempt.

It doesn't have much of a pass rush to take advantage of a weak Washington offensive line, but it has performed well against opponent passing games overall.

Against the ground game, this unit has been Swiss cheese. The Cardinal front ranks second-worst in Rushing Success Rate Allowed and owns bottom-10 rankings in PFF's run defense grade, average depth of tackle and Stuff Rate.

Stanford has had a tough schedule of opposing run offenses recently with UCLA, Oregon and Arizona State in three of its last four games, but it's had some struggles against weaker opponents as well.

Washington has obviously had a hard time running the ball, so it will be interesting to see who wins this matchup between two weak units.

Washington vs. Stanford Matchup Analysis

Toggle the dropdowns below to hide or show how Washington and Stanford match up statistically:

Washington Offense vs. Stanford Defense
Rush Success85129
Line Yards83115
Pass Success7537
Pass Blocking**9681
Big Play9215
Finishing Drives4857
** Pass Blocking (Off.) vs. Pass Rush (Def.)

Stanford Offense vs. Washington Defense
Rush Success110104
Line Yards113121
Pass Success495
Pass Blocking**9762
Big Play2838
Finishing Drives10755
** Pass Blocking (Off.) vs. Pass Rush (Def.)

Pace of Play / Other
PFF Tackling5791
Middle 86546
SP+ Special Teams9937
Plays per Minute77112
Rush Rate49.5% (99)45.7% (117)

Data via College Football Data, FootballOutsiders, SP+, PFF and SportSource Analytics.

Washington vs. Stanford Betting Pick

As far as projections go, I have Stanford slightly favored by 0.3, but where my edge lies is on the total, which I project at 44.6.

Both teams play at a very slow pace and rank outside the top 100 in seconds per play. As far as the matchup, both struggle tremendously to move the ball on the ground and each has a strong secondary, including a dominant one in Washington.

This game should be ugly, and I have a hard time seeing either side putting up many points here without any flukes.

Looking at the market, there hasn't been much action on this total throughout the week. It opened at 48, and while some places now sit at 47.5, the opening number is still available for the taking.

I took this on Sunday afternoon and expected it to drop a point or two, but that has not happened up to this point.

It's concerning to not see the market move much in your favor, but I still do feel pretty strongly about the under in this one with how these teams match up against one another.

Pick: Under 48

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