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Pac-12 Football: Week 12 preview and predictions

USC vs UCLA is the game of the week as Pac-12 play heads down the home stretch

USC v UCLA Photo by Harry How/Getty Images

Battle for the Victory Bell

No. 11 USC (9-2, 7-1 Pac-12) vs. UCLA (5-5, 3-4) Sat. 11/17 6:00 PM MT ABC

ESPN Matchup Predictor: USC 79.3%

Sam Darnold and the USC Trojans have caught fire since their mid-season slump. Josh Rosen and the UCLA Bruins got back into the win column last week after their win against Arizona State and Rosen is healthy. If the Bruins pull off the upset then they will be bowl eligible. However, the Bruins will have to play sound defense on Saturday if they want even the slightest chance at containing Darnold, Ronald Jones II, and Deontay Burnett.

Final Prediction: USC 42 - UCLA 31

Can the Sun Devils break their losing streak in Corvallis?

Arizona State (5-5, 4-3) vs Oregon State (1-9, 0-7) Sat. 11/17 1:00 PM MT PAC12

ESPN Matchup Predictor: 77.1%

Arizona State will play Oregon State on Saturday and even though the Sun Devils are the favorites, the Devils haven’t beaten the Beavers in Corvallis in over 10 years. Oregon State’s secondary is one of the worst in the country as the Beavers are tied as the No. 87 passing defense in the country and No. 116 overall defense. The Sun Devils aren’t that much better on defense as they have the No. 111 total defense. It’s going to come down to who can produce more points on the offensive end because there is going to be little to no defense in this game.

Final Prediction: Arizona State 38 - Oregon State 27

Will Herbert help the Ducks to victory against Tate?

Arizona (7-3, 5-2) vs Oregon (5-5, 2-5) Sat. 11/17 5:00 PM MT PAC12

ESPN Matchup Predictor: Oregon 63.0%

Sophomore quarterback Justin Herbert will return the Ducks’ lineup for the first time in five weeks after he suffered a broken collarbone in week five against California. Heisman candidate Khalil Tate will lead the Arizona Wildcats into Eugene. Tate had another game over 200 yards rushing last week against Oregon State. Tate should have his way again this week against a weak Oregon defense.

Final Prediction: Arizona 45 - Oregon 34

Saturday Blowouts

No. 22 Stanford (7-3, 6-2) vs Cal (5-5, 2-5) Sat. 11/17 6:00 PM MT FOX

ESPN Matchup Predictor: Stanford 88.5%

Heisman candidate Bryce Love and Stanford will host California who is coming off a win against Oregon State. Ross Bowers is still developing as a passer, but he could find a lot of success on Saturday against the Cardinal’s defense which is ranked No. 63 in the country. However, this could be a heyday for Love as Cal’s defense is ranked No. 98 in the country.

Final Prediction: Stanford 35 - Cal 17

No. 18 Washington (8-2, 5-2) vs Utah (5-5, 2-5) Sat. 11/17 8:30 PM MT ESPN

ESPN Matchup Predictor: Washington 94.0%

Quarterback Tyler Huntley will lead the Utes into Seattle to face Jake Browning and the No. 18 Huskies. Browning, Myles Gaskin, and Dante Pettis make headlines week in and week out, but the unsung hero for Washington is its defense which ranks No. 4 in the country. The inconsistent play by Huntley, backup quarterback Troy Williams, and the entire Utah offense in general could be a recipe for disaster against one of the most prolific defenses in the country.

Final Prediction: Washington 45 - Utah 20