Oregon Ducks vs Stanford Cardinal: betting odds, preview, trends, pick

Thearon W. Henderson

Oregon almost always beats Stanford and they almost always cover the spread too. But is 21 points too much to lay for the No. 2 rated Ducks?

The Pac-12 North Division title comes down to who wins Saturday night's game between the Oregon Ducks and the Stanford Cardinal in Eugene (8 pm ET, ABC).

This is no surprise, as many experts predicted these would be the top two teams in the division back in the summer. But few of those experts predicted that the point spread in this game would be three touchdowns.

Oregon opened as a 22-point favorite, but since then that line had dropped to 20.5 at most college football betting outlets tracked by OddsShark.com, the odds partner to SB Nation.

And if recent history repeats itself, this will be a Duck win and a cover for Duck bettors. Oregon is 9-1 SU and 8-2 ATS the past 10 seasons against Stanford, according to the game preview.

The game matches Oregon, which is ranked No. 2 in this week's BCS standings and leads the Pac-12 North at 7-0 in conference play, against Stanford, which sits in second place at 6-1. Both teams play one more conference game after this; Oregon visits Oregon State for the Civil War game, while the Cardinal visit UCLA.

Stanford, breaking in a new QB after the departure of Andrew Luck, started 3-0 this season. They beat USC, but were upset by Washington the following week. The Cardinal then beat Arizona in a wild game in overtime, 54-48, but lost a tough one at Notre Dame, 20-13.

Since then, though, Stanford has won four straight, knocking off Cal, Washington State, Colorado and last week, Oregon State.

The Cardinal also made a change at QB along the way, replacing Josh Nunes with freshman Kevin Hogan, who hit on 22 of 29 passes in leading the team to its victory last week over the Beavers.

Oregon, meanwhile, has rolled along like a high-powered machine almost from the get-go this season. The Ducks haven't scored fewer than 42 point yet this year, and often are resting starters by the third quarter.

Last week, Oregon went to Berkeley and beat Cal 59-17. Over their last three games, including a 62-51 victory over USC, the Ducks have averaged 64 points.

Statistically speaking Oregon is averaging 324 rushing YPG this season, while the Stanford defense is allowing just 59 YPG on the ground.

Weather could play a factor in this game; the forecast for Saturday in Eugene calls for a 90 percent chance of rain and plenty of wind. Sounds lovely, if you're a Duck.

Free Pick: Stanford has done a fine job overall in its first season post-Luck, but the Cardinal simply don't have enough to stick with the Ducks. We'll give the points and back Oregon (Courtesy of PickShark.com).

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