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Arizona vs. ASU score predictions

Will the Wildcats bring the Territorial Cup home?

NCAA Football: Arizona State at Arizona Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

The Arizona Wildcats (4-7) will wrap up the 2019 season Saturday in Tempe when they will take on the in-state rival Arizona State Sun Devils (6-5), who have won two straight in this series.

Kickoff is set for 8 p.m. MST on ESPN. Las Vegas oddsmakers peg ASU as 13.5-point favorites.

Here is who we think will claim the Territorial Cup. Be sure to leave your predictions in the comment section below.

Brian J. Pedersen — Arizona wins 34-31

It’s been a really bad year, far worse than anyone could have expected, and it would be very easy for Arizona to just pack it in and look toward 2020. If the final game weren’t ASU, I’d probably be predicting another blowout loss for the Wildcats. But it’s hard to think this team won’t put in maximum effort against the Sun Devils, who are arguably the most vulnerable team Arizona has faced since Stanford more than a month ago. Sure, they just upset Oregon but before that they had dropped five in a row, looking like the young team they are. And it’s worth noting that, in three of the last four times Arizona has entered the Territorial Cup knowing it wasn’t going bowling, it’s treated that game like a bowl and came out on top.

Brandon Combs — Arizona wins 42-28

This game means a lot to the players, fans, and Tucson. I believe that everyone is on the same page with that this year. Couple that with how last year’s game went and I see the Cats coming out and playing inspired football.

There’s been a lot of negatives this season, with some positives sprinkled in here and there, and I believe the team will want to end on a high note and bring the Cup back to Tucson.

Arizona has nothing to lose and ASU is already bowl eligible. That makes for a good recipe for UA to win. Though it is a rivalry game...

Anyway, I foresee a lot of the same issues that plagued ASU to reappear again. Remember, they lost five in a row before having a freak win against Oregon last week. Also, in no way, shape, or form could I ever project ASU to beat Arizona.

Gabe Encinas — ASU wins 34-21

I know anything can happen once this game, but this has been an absolutely brutal stretch of six games for Arizona.

Perhaps it could be a let down game with ASU coming off a top-10 win but I just don’t trust Sumlin in Tempe with this group.

Scott Moran — ASU wins 44-28

This feels like a two-possession game to me. An Arizona victory is totally possible, but ASU is the better team and the game is played in Tempe.

The key for this game will be ASU quarterback Jayden Daniels. He’s been red hot at home and against bad defenses...and now he’s at home against a bad defense. Eno Benjamin has had a down year, but with Frank Darby and Brandon Aiyuk against the UA defense, I feel safe betting on ASU to score points.

Grant Gunnell is a solid future option at quarterback, and this running game will have a chance, but I can’t force myself to pick U of A no matter how much I want to. Close, high-scoring game in the first half, boring pull-away job from ASU in the second. Here’s to being wrong.

Adam Green — Arizona wins 31-27

This is such a tough game to predict because while Arizona isn’t particularly good, Arizona State isn’t really much better. Really, they’re not.

As I see it, Arizona’s issue has been less about talent (though they aren’t great along the defensive front) than it is about injuries. Specifically, injuries along the offensive line have crippled an offense that at the very least could keep things competitive in most games.

Assuming Arizona gets a couple of its injured linemen back, the Wildcats should be able to move the ball and put up points against the Sun Devils. Add in the fact that ASU isn’t built to score nor is really all that capable of blowing people out, and you have the makings of a close game I’ll say the Wildcats win.

Ronnie Stoffle — ASU wins 38-25

I wish this game were taking place in Tucson. If it were, I would feel so much better about the potential outcome. Unfortunately it is not, which leaves me feeling not so great.

The two-quarterback scheme for the Wildcats has completely paralyzed the offense. With that, the defense has no reason to care. It’s not a good situation and it’s time to turn the page on this season.

Ryan Kelapire — ASU wins 31-21

If Arizona’s offensive line is somewhat healthy, I think the Wildcats can hang in there against ASU and its extremely inconsistent offense. If Arizona’s offense can’t move the ball, this will get ugly because the UA defense will get tired and eventually start getting gashed for big yards and big plays by stars like Benjamin and Aiyuk.

I feel like I say this every week, but the one thing that cannot happen, but always seems to happen in road games under Sumlin, is getting off to one of those patented slow starts where Arizona is down by multiple scores before it starts to do anything.

There aren’t many things worse than being uncompetitive in a rivalry game and in this case it could even cost Sumlin his job. Besides, the longer you hang around in a rivalry game, the greater the chance that something ridiculous happens and you can steal a win.

Arizona absolutely needs to force a turnover or two to have any shot. And “force” probably isn’t the right word, as ASU fumbling a snap and/or muffing a punt would do the trick as well.

For UA fans’ sanity, I hope this does not come down to a field goal because we all know how that will end.