BYU vs Washington odds, line: Picks, predictions from proven expert who’s 4-0 on Cougars games
A non-conference showdown of top-20 teams looms Saturday as the No. 11 Washington Huskies host the No. 20 BYU Cougars at 8:30 p.m. ET. Current Washington vs. BYU odds show the Huskies as 17-point favorites, the same as where the line opened, while the total has moved to 45.5 after opening at 44. Each team enters Saturday with a 3-1 record. Washington is 2-0 in the Pac-12 with impressive victories over Utah and Arizona State, while BYU seeks a second impressive road victory after shocking Wisconsin at Camp Randall. Before you enter your Washington vs. BYU picks, check out what SportsLine data scientist Stephen Oh has to say.
The renowned co-founder of AccuScore, Oh simulates each game 10,000 times using the SportsLine projection model. And he is already crushing his college football picks in 2018. Moreover, he has had a particularly keen eye for the tendencies of the Cougars, as he looks to build on an impressive 4-0 record in picks involving them over the past two seasons.
Now, Oh has crunched the numbers and generated a strong point-spread selection for BYU vs. Washington, which he’s sharing at SportsLine.
Oh knows the Huskies opened the season with a narrow 21-16 loss to Auburn in Atlanta, but have since shut down their competition. Even in a narrow 27-20 victory over Arizona State, the Huskies held the Sun Devils to just 231 yards of offense.
Washington quarterback Jake Browning has completed 61 percent of his passes for 966 yards, seven touchdowns and four interceptions this season. His best game was his last outing, when he completed 15 of 22 passes for 202 yards and three touchdowns against the Sun Devils.
Washington’s defense also returned nine starters from a squad that allowed only 19.9 points per game in 2017. This season, that number has dropped to 10.3. It held ASU to just 67 net yards passing, thanks in part to seven sacks. Senior linebacker Ben Burr-Kirven, who led the team with 84 tackles last season, registered 20 tackles against the Sun Devils, the most by any Huskies player since 1996.
But just because Washington has been hot doesn’t mean it will cover a huge number against a BYU team that went into Camp Randall Stadium and knocked off Wisconsin just two weeks ago.
Oh also knows that except for a blowout win over McNeese State last week, BYU has played in three one-possession games. The Cougars came out ahead in two of them, winning 28-23 at Arizona to open the season and shocking No. 6 Wisconsin 24-21 in Week 3.
Like Washington, it’s BYU’s defense that ensures the team has a chance in the end. The Cougars allow just 328.3 yards per game, ranking 29th nationally in total yards allowed. It’s no shocker, as the team returned six of its top seven tacklers, including Sione Takitaki (five sacks last year) and Corbin Kaufusi (six). The Cougars’ defense is allowing just 17 points per game, down more than a touchdown from a year ago (24.7).
Oh has analyzed this matchup from every angle and while we can tell you he’s leaning under, he has discovered a crucial x-factor that makes one side of the spread a must-back. He’s only sharing it at SportsLine.