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Week 10 – Arizona at UCLA
Posted Nov 2, 2012

Week 10 Fearless Predictions & Game Previews - Arizona at UCLA

Arizona (5-3) at UCLA (6-2) Nov. 3, 10:30, Pac-12 Network

Here’s The Deal: There’s a four-team race in a Pac-12 South that was once considered the sole domain of USC. Both Arizona and UCLA are firmly in the mix following statement wins a week ago.

The Wildcats knocked off the Trojans on Saturday, 39-36, moving further ahead of schedule in Rich Rodriguez’s debut season in Tucson. In a year when Arizona was supposed to struggle to be competitive on many levels, the team now controls its own destiny in the division. It’s going to take four more wins to earn a spot in the league title game, but Arizona is playing as if it’s capable of pulling it off.

The Bruins have bounced back from their Oct. 6 collapse to Cal with back-to-back wins over Utah and Arizona State. Last week’s defeat of the Sun Devils in Tempe marked a turning point for the young team. UCLA survived a see-saw battle outside of the cozy confines of the Rose Bowl, getting a game-winning field goal with no time left on the clock.

Why Arizona Might Win: RichRod has the offense cooking.

It has not taken the staff very long to get this attack into high gear, spitting out at least 35 points in all but one of the last seven games. Matt Scott has been the impresario from behind center, throwing 13 touchdown passes over the last four games. He’s also a danger to leave the pocket, meshing with star RB Ka’Deem Carey to give the Cats a potent ground game. Defenses in the Pac-12 have yet to catch up to Arizona’s read-option, and UCLA isn’t about to crack the code. The Bruins have been whipped for 43 points in two of the last three games, having a particularly tough time against the pass.

Why UCLA Might Win: Arizona will score. UCLA will keep pace.

QB Brett Hundley has had a terrific initial season, really turning the corner in his development as the leader of the offense. Like a younger version of Scott, he’s the kind of playmaker who’ll make things happen with his feet and his arm. The Carey in the UCLA offense is Johnathan Franklin, a 1,000-yard rusher, with the hands to also be an asset on swing passes. The Arizona D is soft and beatable, ranking next to last in the Pac-12 in sacks, tackles for loss and total defense. Enormous TE Joseph Fauria figures to be a particular handful for a mediocre collection of Wildcats linebackers.

What To Watch Out For: The offenses will dictate the tempo of the game, but at some point one of the defenses will have to step up and make a play.

Both teams will want to attack from various angles, testing offensive line that can be penetrated. Arizona will deploy its resources form the second level, unleashing Spur Tra’Mayne Bondurant and linebackers Marquis Flowers, Sir Thomas Jackson and Jake Fischer. UCLA can take a more traditional tact with ends Datone Jones and Cassius Marsh, but will also fire up Anthony Barr, who plays like a hybrid from linebacker.

What Will Happen: Buckle up. The Rose Bowl is in for a wild ride this Saturday night.

The offenses are way ahead of the defenses at UCLA and Arizona these days. Good for the fans in attendance, but not so much for the respective defensive coordinators. The blueprint for this week’s game was laid out in Week 9, with the Bruins and the Wildcats surviving high-scoring shootouts. The backfield battle of Scott-Carey and Hundley-Franklin will be both trick and treat. This has all of the markings of a last-man-with-the-ball type game that doesn’t get decided until Franklin scoots for the game-winner with less than a minute on the clock.

CFN Prediction: UCLA 41 … Arizona 37
ATS Consultants Line (Click for more lines and picks) UCLA -3.5 O/U: 71
Must Watch Rating (5 – The Man With The Iron Fists, 1 – Election coverage until Tuesday morning): 3.5