College Football Picks, Predictions, and Previews: The Way It Oughtta Be

Washington State vs. USC 12/6/2020 College Football Picks, Prediction, and Preview

The Washington State visits USC on 12/6/2020 at 7:30PM.

Washington State and USC face off in an important game for both teams as every game in this shortened season with limited or no fans in attendance means more. Washington State has a record of 1-1 this season. USC is 3-0 this season. Both have players to meet and know.

Washington State Team Defense Preview

Washington State has had 24 defensive drives in non-garbage time minutes and they yield 5.92 plays per drive. The struggle is real. Washington State cannot find a way to get opposing offenses off the field. Three and outs are not common and if the team needs a three-and-out late in a game to get the ball back, it is just not happening.Offensives should lick their lips given their inability to stop anyone, this is one of the worst defenses in the country. The Defensive Coordinator coaching search threads on Washington State message boards are flights of fantasy. Washington State opponents pass the football 57.75% of the time.They are a team that faces a lot of Air Raid Offenses.

This is a pushover defense. There is not enough push from the Defensive Line and not enough imagination from the Defensive Coordinator to cause chaos in the backfield.Opponent rushing yards attributed to their offensive line this season comes out to 3.62 yards per carry. Sorry to say this about this front seven, but the best way to make an average offensive line look good is for them to face this horrid front seven. Running backs should look forward to this porous defense filled with poor tacklers who take terrible angles. Long breakout runs against this Defense are far too common. This is a very porous rushing defense that is incapable of preventing a situation where their safeties chase down a running back or quarterback.

This is not a disruptive Defense and they get pushed over way too easily. Perhaps they are too vanilla with playcalling. Getting more granual into the front seven and their ability to cause trouble, they are just average in this regard. Washington State has shown themselves to be better at stopping the pass than the run this season.

Washington State Team Offense Preview

Washington State has had 24 drives in non-garbage time minutes and they average 5.25 plays per drive. There is not much to take away here when it comes to how many plays per drive they run, but they are a team that falls in the average window when it comes to plays per drive. Washington State has shown a capability to be explosive on first and second down to avoid third downs and has converted well (relatively) on 3rd and 4th Down situations. Passing plays make up 57.94% of their play calls.This is an Air Raid Offense team, they are going to pass the ball a lot and running plays are only used to keep opponents honest.

Washington State struggles with running the ball, getting zero or negative yard plays is disspiriting and the offensive line is not effectively making a good push. Poor playcalling, pre-snap adjustments or post-snap reads may be responsible and this could fall on the Quarterback, Offensive Coordinator, and Head Coach. How effective is the offensive line given what we know about their ability to prevent negative yards on rushing plays? More than you think, thanks to the Adjusted Line Yards metric. Washington State can take credit for 2.42 yards per carry. So what does this mean? It means that the offensive line has been incredibly disappointing in their contribution to the ground game. This is a team that is rather above-average when it comes to gashing defenses. The threat of the run should force opposing to play more honest and assignment defensive football is a must. They have an explosive running game and they are capable of breaking big yardage runs on First and Second Down. This puts a lot of pressure on Linebackers and Safeties.

Washington State has bullied and controlled defenses this season, defenses have not been able to dictate what this offense is able to do to them. Opponents should consider a containment strategy. Washington State is among the best in the country at keeping defensive front sevens at bay. Opposing defenses need their secondary players to step up and cause trouble in order for this Offense to be disrupted. Washington State is a better passing team than running team this season.

USC Team Defense Preview

USC has had 37 total defensive drives this season and they yield 5.19 plays per drive. Relatively speaking, USC is not a team that allows many plays per drive. This defense either gives up big plays quickly or induces a lot of three-and-outs, we shall find out more. Opponents face third and long situations a lot against this defense. This is a defense that forces opponents to commit penalties, have compromised offensive line play, and fail to convert on crunch possessions. Passing plays make up 50.52% of their opponents’ play calls.Opponents typically have some form of run/pass balance against them.

USC is not doing anything particularly special as far as their ability to create negative yardage plays on the ground. How effective are opposing offensive lines given what we know about their ability to force negative yardage rushing plays? USC can take credit for holding the offensive line of their opponent to 3.03 yards per carry. Generally speaking, this is an average defense when it comes to how offensive lines control or fail to control them on the ground. Running backs should look forward to this porous defense filled with poor tacklers who take terrible angles. Long breakout runs against this Defense are far too common. This is a very porous rushing defense that is incapable of preventing a situation where their safeties chase down a running back or quarterback.

This Defense has had average success disrupting the flow of the opposing offense.. Getting more granual into the front seven and their ability to cause trouble, they are just average in this regard. USC has shown themselves to be better at stopping the pass than the run this season.

USC Team Offense Preview

USC has had 40 drives in non-garbage time minutes and they average 5.68 plays per drive. USC runs a lot of plays per drive and this could wear an opposing defense down. USC has shown a capability to be explosive on first and second down to avoid third downs and has converted well (relatively) on 3rd and 4th Down situations. USC passes the football 58.15% of the time.This is an Air Raid Offense team, they are going to pass the ball a lot and running plays are only used to keep opponents honest.

USC struggles with running the ball, getting zero or negative yard plays is disspiriting and the offensive line is not effectively making a good push. Poor playcalling, pre-snap adjustments or post-snap reads may be responsible and this could fall on the Quarterback, Offensive Coordinator, and Head Coach. How effective is the offensive line given what we know about their ability to prevent negative yards on rushing plays? More than you think, thanks to the Adjusted Line Yards metric. USC can take credit for 2.5 yards per carry. So what does this mean? It means that the offensive line has been incredibly disappointing in their contribution to the ground game. This is also a team that is getting to the second-level in an average fashion. Offensive line and running backs are average in this regard. They are capable of busting out a long run, which is really good when the team has the ball in their own territory.

Defenses have had average success disrupting the flow of the USC Offense. Front sevens are causing an average amount of trouble for the Offense. USC has shown themselves to be a better running team than passing team this season.

The Washington State Roster

The Players to Watch for Washington State

Jayden De Laura QB 6-0 195

This season, Jayden De Laura has put up 548 yards and 4 touchdowns. He has thrown 1 interceptions. He has a QB Rating of 139.2thus far this season. Jayden De Laura has thrown 1 interceptions this season.As a rusher, Jayden De Laura has 54.0 rushing yards, which puts him in the 64.6 percentile among Quarterbacks. He ran the ball as opposed to throwing the ball 16.0 times this season, which puts him in the 51.59 percentile. Has he hit paydirt as a runner? He has 1.0 rushing touchdowns this season.

Deon McIntosh RB 6-0 190

This season, Deon McIntosh has 239 rushing yards on 34 carries. Was he able to get to the end zone on the ground? He has 2 rushing touchdowns.As a receiver in the backfield, Deon McIntosh picked up 29 yards. He caught the ball as opposed to taking handoffs or catching laterals 1 times this season. Did he score often as a receiver? He had 0 receiving touchdowns this season.

Renard Bell WR 5-8 161

This season, Renard Bell picked up 218 yards. He caught the ball 16 times this season. Did he score often as a receiver? He had 1 receiving touchdowns this season.

Brennan Jackson DL 6-4 249.0

The leading tackler among Defensive Ends for Washington State, Brennan Jackson has 11 tackles this season. He was able to keep rushers back and penetrate the offensive line with 2 tackles for loss, which puts him in the 66.39 percentile among Defensive Ends. When it came to rushing the Quarterback, he has been able to take them down 0 times this season, which put him in the 30.34 percentile among all Defensive Ends in College Football. He has forced 1 fumbles this season.

Daniel Isom DB 6-0 199.0

He is the leading tackler among non-exclusive Defensive Backs (meaning he can play either Safety Position, Nickel Back, Star or even play as a Cornerback in coverage) for Washington State, Daniel Isom had 16 tackles which puts him in the 57.96 percentile among returning non-exclusive Defensive Backs. He was able to keep rushers and receivers back on screens with 0 tackles for loss this season, which puts him in the 32.63 percentile among Secondary position players. When it came to blitzing the Quarterback, this season he was able to take them down 0 times this season. Daniel Isom as a ball hawker was able to pick off 0 passes this season, which puts him in the 38.32 percentile among returning secondary position players this season.

Ayden Hector CB 6-0 203

Considered the leading tackler among Cornerbacks for Washington State, Ayden Hector had 11 tackles which puts him in the 55.99 percentile among Corners. He was able to keep rushers and receivers back on screens with 0 tackles for loss this season, which puts him in the 35.23 percentile among Corners. When it came to blitzing the Quarterback, this season he was able to take them down 0 times this season. Ayden Hector as a ball hawker was able to pick off 1 passes this season, which puts him in the 82.89 percentile among Corners this season.

The USC Roster

The Players to Watch for USC

Kedon Slovis QB 6-2 200

This season, Kedon Slovis has put up 970 yards and 5 touchdowns. He has thrown 2 interceptions. He has a QB Rating of 141.3thus far this season. Kedon Slovis has thrown 2 interceptions this season.As a rusher, Kedon Slovis has 1.0 rushing yards, which puts him in the 27.46 percentile among Quarterbacks. He ran the ball as opposed to throwing the ball 12.0 times this season, which puts him in the 44.76 percentile. Has he hit paydirt as a runner? He has 0.0 rushing touchdowns this season.

Markese Stepp RB 6-0 235

This season, Markese Stepp has 135 rushing yards on 26 carries. Was he able to get to the end zone on the ground? He has 2 rushing touchdowns.As a receiver in the backfield, Markese Stepp picked up 12 yards. He caught the ball as opposed to taking handoffs or catching laterals 2 times this season. Did he score often as a receiver? He had 0 receiving touchdowns this season.

Amon-Ra St. Brown WR 6-1 195

This season, Amon-Ra St. Brown picked up 266 yards. He caught the ball 19 times this season. Did he score often as a receiver? He had 0 receiving touchdowns this season.

Marlon Tuipulotu DL 6-3 305.0

The leading tackler among Defensive Ends for USC, Marlon Tuipulotu has 20 tackles this season. He was able to keep rushers back and penetrate the offensive line with 4 tackles for loss, which puts him in the 83.66 percentile among Defensive Ends. When it came to rushing the Quarterback, he has been able to take them down 2 times this season, which put him in the 82.42 percentile among all Defensive Ends in College Football. He has forced 1 fumbles this season.

Talanoa Hufanga S 6-1 215.0

He is the leading tackler among non-exclusive Defensive Backs (meaning he can play either Safety Position, Nickel Back, Star or even play as a Cornerback in coverage) for USC, Talanoa Hufanga had 24 tackles which puts him in the 72.44 percentile among returning non-exclusive Defensive Backs. He was able to keep rushers and receivers back on screens with 0 tackles for loss this season, which puts him in the 32.63 percentile among Secondary position players. When it came to blitzing the Quarterback, this season he was able to take them down 0 times this season. Talanoa Hufanga as a ball hawker was able to pick off 2 passes this season, which puts him in the 94.93 percentile among returning secondary position players this season.

Olaijah Griffin CB 6-0 175

Considered the leading tackler among Cornerbacks for USC, Olaijah Griffin had 12 tackles which puts him in the 59.06 percentile among Corners. He was able to keep rushers and receivers back on screens with 0 tackles for loss this season, which puts him in the 35.23 percentile among Corners. When it came to blitzing the Quarterback, this season he was able to take them down 0 times this season. Olaijah Griffin as a ball hawker was able to pick off 0 passes this season, which puts him in the 37.43 percentile among Corners this season.

Washington State vs. USC Prediction, Picks, and Odds


Prediction: Washington State 33 USC 43

Spread Pick: Washington State +13 -115 Pinnacle Sports
Moneyline Pick: USC -410 Bookmaker
Total Pick: Over 67 -149 matchbook