Washington vs. Arizona: TV info, betting odds, and expert predictions
At this point a year ago, Arizona was 0-6. Now, as the Wildcats get set to enter Husky Stadium for a battle with the Washington Huskies, they’re 3-3. Improvement, for certain. Arizona coach Jedd Fisch cautions they’re still early in the build of what he hopes can resemble the championship-caliber program that just beat the UA a week ago, but he likes the way his team is generally playing.
“I’m excited about the build,” Fisch told reporters this week. “We’ve talked about trusting the process of getting better. … We’ve had some really good games. We’ve played good football. I went back and looked, last year we were 101st in (total) offense, this year we’re (32nd). Last year we were (70th) in passing this year we’re 10th. Last year we were (119th) in third down, this year we’re 25th. Our red zone offense is far better. We’re giving up less explosive plays than we gave up. We have more … takeaways at the halfway point this year than we had all of last year. I believe that we’re going in the right direction.”
Arizona has yet to string together consecutive wins, but it also hasn’t lost two in a row yet this year. They meet a 4-2 Washington team that has gone about its season the opposite way. UW opened with four straight wins, climbing as high as 15th in the AP Top 25. It has lost back-to-back games, both of them on the road.
“I am really proud of seeing the last two weeks and how we’ve come into the locker room after each loss,” UW coach Kalen DeBoer said of his group. “It’s been different. UCLA, I think there was a hurt. They were riding a four-game winning streak and expectations, and I think there was hurt. This last week, it was an upsetting thing to the guys. I saw a little more aggravation.
“But in both those moments and everything I’ve seen so far, there’s never been anything as far as finger-pointing or guys upset other than upset at what the results were. Not upset at someone else in particular or what we did and how we did it. To me, that says a lot about the character of our team and the culture we’re continuing to build. If the attitude and effort is in that place, we’re going to continue to get better. We want the high expectations.”
Both sides are looking for a get-right kind of game. Here’s everything you need to know for the matchup.
TV info and kickoff time
Kickoff time: 2:30 p.m. PT
TV network: Pac-12 Network
Location: Husky Stadium, Seattle
Line: Washington -14.5
Money line: Washington -600, Arizona +430
ESPN’s FPI gives Washington an 89% chance of beating Arizona.
Bill Connelly’s SP+ is calling for a 42-20 Washington win. It gives UW a 90% chance of winning.
Dawgman.com’s Chris Fetters has UW winning 45-35:
If the Huskies can dominate the line of scrimmage and move the ball on the ground, that would open a lot of things up for Michael Penix Jr. And by getting ahead early, it would put (Jayden) de Laura in the position of feeling he has to do more to bring his team back. That means opportunities to bait him into bad decisions. I still think it’s going to be a nip and tuck game all the way, but as long as UW can get out ahead, they should be able to match the ‘Cats score to score and keep the visitors at bay, ultimately salting it away with a key turnover or two.
Arizona Desert Swarm’s Brian J. Pedersen also has UW winning 44-38:
This game has shootout written all over it, which is probably the only way Arizona is going to beat any decent teams right now with how its defense is playing. But as potent as the Wildcats have been on offense, Washington is just as prolific and less mistaken-prone. Arizona cannot win if it turns the ball over, and as much as Jedd Fisch said he doesn’t want the offense to feel pressured to score every time that impetus is there. All it will take is one mistake to turn things on its side.
The Arizona Daily Star’s Michael Lev has UW winning 41-38:
Both teams have prolific passing attacks and struggling defenses, so a shootout seems inevitable. Can the Cats hang with the Huskies for four quarters in that type of game? We think they can. But UW’s pass rush and Penix’s playmaking will prove too much to overcome.