Washington vs. UCLA prediction: Upset brewing for the Bruins

Washington vs. UCLA prediction: Upset brewing for the Bruins

The Washington Huskies have made short work of their first four opponents, outscoring them by a combined 176-76. Those four games, however, were all at home. On Friday, Washington will play its first road game of the season at UCLA.

A big reason for Washington’s success this season is the play of quarterback Michael Penix Jr., a transfer from Indiana. He has thrown for 1,388 yards, 12 touchdowns and just one interception. A few more impressive games and Penix Jr. will be right in the thick of the Heisman Trophy race.

UCLA is coming off a blowout win over lowly Colorado after surviving a scare against South Alabama. While the Bruins haven’t looked as impressive as Washington, the offense is still humming behind quarterback Dorian Thompson-Robinson, averaging 41.7 points per game.

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Michael Penix Jr.Michael Penix Jr.AP

I’ve been very impressed by Washington and Penix Jr., but keep in mind their biggest win of the season came at home against a shorthanded Michigan State team, which was down two defensive starters and its top wide receiver. Pro bettors came in early on the side of the Bruins and we’ve seen the opening number of +3.5 bet down to +2.5.

Betting on the NFL?

I’m always wary of teams playing their first road game a month into the season because they tend to be overvalued by the betting market. I think that’s the case here with Washington as I make this line closer to UCLA -1. I’m backing the Bruins as short home dogs. 

The play: UCLA +3