Utah at California Week 5 Betting Pick & Prediction

Posted by Peter Boysen on September 29, 2016 in

Utah features a grinding style that wears down the opposition; Cal uses a video-game style, high-octane offense to pile up points, but their defense lacks starch to this point. The Utes sit at 4-0 and now have their hardest road game so far this year when they head to Berkeley. Check out all of our college football lines for Week 5.

Utah at California Week 5 Betting Pick & Prediction

When: Saturday, October 1, 2016, 6:00 PM ET
Where: California Memorial Stadium, Berkeley, CA
TV: Pac-12 Network
Radio: California / Utah
Live Stream: Pac-12 Network Live
NCAA Football Odds: Cal (-1), O/U 67

Why should you bet on the Utes?

Utah came back late in the fourth period and stood with a chance to send the contest to overtime at 27 points apiece. The Utes decided to go for a victory, as Troy Williams found Tim Patrick for an 18-yard score with just 16 seconds remaining. Patrick makes an ideal target for quarterbacks, standing 6-5, and he has hauled in 20 balls for 385 yards and scored five touchdowns this year. Williams picked up 270 yards through the air, but the two fourth-down conversions on the last drive made the most clutch moments of the night.

Defense stands as an issue for the Utes, as they permitted 466 yards of offense to the Trojans, even though Utah held the ball for almost 38 minutes and collected three fumbles from the Trojan offense. Utah does have a solid scoring defense for the year, permitting just 15.8 points per contest, but Cal brings a high-octane attack that teams have struggled to stop all year.

Why should you bet on the Golden Bears?

Cal picks up yards in bunches, just like they did on Saturday when they gained 637 yards of offense against Arizona State. The problems came with a pair of interceptions and a fumble which gave the Sun Devils too many scoring opportunities. Cal led the game 21-3 and 24-10 at the half, but then Arizona State erupted for 41 points in the second half. Against Utah, Cal needs to play defense for two halves and eliminate turnovers.

Quarterback Davis Webb needs to improve his ball control in particular. He did throw for 478 yards and five scores, but he also gave Arizona State all three turnovers, including a crucial pick-six late in the contest, when the Sun Devils led by three but the Golden Bears were driving for a chance to tie or take the lead. Cal wideout Chad Hansen is one of Webb’s favorite targets, gaining 110 yards on 10 catches. The problem for Cal is also on the defensive side. When you permit 42.5 points per game, it’s hard to build a winning streak.

My Betting Pick and Final Score Prediction

Cal looked impressive in their win over Texas, but the fact remains that their defense is unreliable, and they turn the ball over too often. Utah brings a more reliable game, and I predict a 30-24 win for Utah to take them to 5-0.