WhatIfSports 2014 College Football Week 13 Predictions
Each Monday, WhatIfSports.com’s NCAA college football simulation engine provides game predictions for every D-1 FBS game that upcoming week. The college football simulation engine generates detailed information for each game including each team’s chances of winning (Win%) and the average points scored for both teams.
The statistical inputs to the thousands of college football simulations are based on rigorous analysis of each team’s roster, depth charts and statistically based player rankings. Roster modifications are made in cases of injury or suspension and those players are removed from their team’s game simulation for that week.
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Game of the Week: USC at UCLA
If not for some clutch second-half play by the Horned Frogs and Seminoles, the inaugural College Football Playoff picture would have experienced its first major shake-up. Three TCU turnovers allowed Kansas to compete, Hurricanes’ freshman quarterback Brad Kaaya torched Florida State in the first half before the defense placed the clamps down in crunch time, and despite the five-point margin of victory, the Crimson Tide truly dominated Dan Mullen’s Mississippi State Bulldogs Saturday.
While the Oregon Ducks have once again run away with the Pac-12 North, the South Division remains up for the grabs. Los Angeles’ crosstown rivalry between those Trojans and Bruins is WhatIfSports.com’s Featured Game of the Week!
UCLA has won four in a row by an average margin of victory of just seven points, but their defense has allowed 30-or-more points in three of those wins. As you would expect, the Bruins rank 79th in the country in total defense as they yield 162 (64th) rushing and 247 (97th) passing yards per game.
On offense, one-time Heisman Trophy candidate Brett Hundley has managed to author another impressive statistical resume despite the two losses. He’s completing 72 percent of his passes with 17 touchdowns and only four interceptions. His balanced offense – 31st-ranked pass offense and 29th-ranked rush offense – does include his mobility with 564 rush yards and a team-high seven rushing scores.
Hundley’s favorite target is by far Jordan Payton who has hauled in 58 passes for 839 yards with seven touchdowns.
The No. 24 USC Trojans are the de facto Pac-12 leaders in the South Division (6-2) with the Bruins playing one less game to-date (5-2).
Statistically speaking, Trojans’ quarterback Cody Kessler remains one of the best quarterbacks in the country, completing better than 70 percent of his passes with 29 touchdowns and only three interceptions. USC ranks 19th in the nation in passing offense at nearly 295 passing yards per game. Nelson Agholor paces the receiving corps with over 1,000 receiving yards and a team-high 10 touchdowns.
Despite the USC running game ranking 66th in the nation at 163 yards per contest, Javorius Allen is a top 15 running back nationally with nearly 1,200 rushing yards and eight touchdowns.
Their pass defense – ranked 105th in the country – allows 261 yards per game, while their rush defense allows 135 yards per game – 31st in the nation.
We simulated the Bruins and Trojans 101 times and the computers like UCLA to win 57.4 percent of the time by an average score of 25-22.