There are high expectations for both the University of Oregon Ducks and the University of Washington Huskies football programs in 2019.
Most online betting sites have both teams at +220 to win the Pac-12 Titles, so if you’re going to place any action, start with this intertops review to make sure you’re getting everything you need.
Now, let’s break down the two teams and their chances at winning the Pac-12.
It has basically been decided that the eventual Pac-12 champion will come out of the Pac-12 North –the Ducks or the Huskies. Stanford, Cal, and Oregon State don’t have a prayer this year. Washington State is going to be a decent team again, but their defense will be their Achilles heel. And even if they run the rest of the table, they have to go into Autzen Stadium this year to face the Ducks and Husky Stadium to face UW. So the likely hood of them winning both of those games to clinch the North is not very likely.
The only other team that can give challenge is Utah, who resides in the south and are sitting at +350. They are the inevitable Pac-12 South winners, with only USC standing in their way. That said, USC has the 3rd toughest schedule in the country. Utah does have to play USC in L.A. But sandwiched between Trojan road games to BYU and Washington, then at Notre Dame. Even if Utah loses their head-to-head with the Trojans, they are still run most of the table with their weak schedule.
With the exception of road games at BYU, USC, and Washington, the Utes have a cupcake schedule. They get Northern Illinois at home, Idaho State at home, Washington State at home, a trip to Corvallis to face a sputtering Oregon State Beavers, then they get Arizona State, and Cal in back-to-back home stands before their trip up to see the Huskies. After that it’s UCLA at home a trip to see the Wildcats, then finishing it all out with the Colorado Buffaloes up at Rice-Eccles Stadium.
When you look at the schedule, the path is clear. A trip to the Pac-12 Championship Game seems all but inevitable for the Utes. This is not the case up north, where the Ducks and Huskies will be locked in a season-long battle for dominance over their division. The question is, is Utah good enough to beat either a Justin Herbert led Ducks squad or the pounding ground attack of Salvon Ahmed? I don’t think so.
Looking at UW first, their defense is already the showcase of their spring and early summer. Although the defense was great last year, the Huskies lacked in the sacks department. That doesn’t look like it will be the case this season. Jimmy Lake has put a focus on getting guys like Myles Rice, Joe Tryon, and Ariel Ngata to the quarterback over the offseason. Kieth Taylor has made strides in the secondary through the spring, and it’s looking like he’s going to be a guy that gets his fair share of picks against opposing QBs and receivers.
Over in Oregon, Justin Herbert is probably the single best playmaker in the entire Pac-12. He is a guy that can single-handedly destroy an opposing defense. And with the Ducks weak-ish schedule, my money would be on Oregon to quack (squeak) past the Huskies. Oregon is ranked at No. 10 on ESPN’s Power Index. Oregon should also be more defense-minded this year, and we should see some improvement in the Oline, as Mario Cristobal has taken over for Willie Taggart, who left for Florida State. Cristobal played as a First-Team All-Big-East tackle, winning two National Titles under Jimmy Johnson and Dennis Erickson at Miami. So, we should see a more well-rounded Oregon Ducks team this year.
The 2019 Pac-12 Champion is coming from the 44th parallel or higher.