USC vs. Arizona State Line at -2.5

Written by:
Carrie Stroup
Published on:
Sep/23/2011
USC vs. Arizona State Line

The USC vs. Arizona State line was coming in at -2.5 in favor of Arizona State.

Sportsbook.com Line & Total: Arizona State -2.5 & 54

Opening Line & Total: ASU -3 & 54

No. 23 USC looks to improve its record to 4-0 when it travels to Tempe to take on Pac-12 rival Arizona State.

The Sun Devils haven’t beaten Southern Cal this century, but this is their best chance to snap that 11-game losing streak which dates back to 1999. ASU lost last year’s meeting 34-33 in part to a blocked extra point USC returned for a two-point conversion. Arizona State already has a quality win this year, over Missouri, and has gotten strong play out of first-year starting QB Brock Osweiler (290 passing YPG, 6 TD passes, 2 TD runs). The Trojans were mostly unimpressive in a three-game string of home games (2-1 ATS thanks to a blocked FG return TD as time expired against Utah). The Sun Devils are 11-4 ATS in their past 15 home games.

USC’s Matt Barkley has performed admirably this season, with 892 passing yards, 9 TD and 1 INT. He lit up Syracuse for 324 yards and a career-high-tying five touchdowns with no interceptions in the 38-17 win last week. Barkley is looking to redeem himself from the last time he visited Tempe, when he completed only 7-of-22 passes for 112 yards against ASU. The Trojans defense looks much better this season after allowing 400 yards per game last year. In 2011, USC is allowing just 317 total YPG. Part of that is due to the excellent play of freshmen linebackers Hayes Pullard (23 tackles) and Dion Bailey (16 tackles).

Osweiler has stood tall (literally, at 6-foot-8), despite his team lacking a strong rushing attack in its past two games. ASU has only gained 210 yards on the ground on 65 carries (3.2 YPC). Junior Cameron Marshall leads the team with a modest 153 rushing yards and two scores, but he gained 101 total yards on just 12 touches (nine carries, three catches) in last year’s loss to USC. The Sun Devils suffered a big blow to their defense as DE Junior Onyeali, the reigning Pac-12 Defensive Freshman of the Year, suffered torn cartilage in his knee against Illinois and could miss the rest of the season. ASU has helped itself out in the return game as kick returner Rashad Ross (30.8 return avg.) and punt returner Jamal Miles (13.5 return avg.) both rank 13th in the nation in their respective return games.

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