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Oklahoma vs. Oklahoma State

Betting Line: Oklahoma -3 o/u 67

11/27/10

Fans of the Oklahoma State Cowboys and Oklahoma Sooners refer to games between these two universities as the Bedlam Series. They are big time rivals, but the rivalry hasn't been much in football. The Sooners have won 11 games straight and own the series lead 80-15-7. An Oklahoma State victory has been rare, but they could do it for the 16th time this year. The Cowboys enter this game with a record of 10-1 after wins over Baylor, Texas, and Kansas in their last three games. The Sooners routed Baylor on the road 53-24 last week to make their record 9-2. Both of these teams can score points and both want this rivalry win. Let's see how they stack up.

The Sooner are just above .500 on the year at 6-5 ATS. The Cowboys are a rock solid 9-2 ATS. The Cowboys are averaging 45.3 PPG compared to 36.6 for the Sooners. Oklahoma is giving up 20.4 PPG compared to 26.0 PPG for the Cowboys. The Sooners are 2-4 in their last 6 games on the road against the Cowboys. Vegas has the spread at 2.5 points with Oklahoma State as the favorite. 56% of the early action is on the Cowboys compared to 44% for the Sooners.

Oklahoma State's most recent game was a lopsided 48-14 win on the road against the Kansas Jayhawks. QB Brandon Weeden was nearly flawless going 31/43 for 389 yards and 3 TDs. RBs Kendall Hunter, Jeremy Smith, and Joseph Randle all put in good games to combine for 188 yards and 2 TDs. Sophomore WR Justin Blackmon continued his spectacular season by catching 10 passes for 130 yards and a TD. On the year he has 1,560 yards and 17 TDs. The Cowboys offense is one of the most potent in the country and they score points in bunches. Doing so against Oklahoma will be a challenge, but the chances of them scoring 31+ points are good.

The Sooners were once #1 in the BCS ranking, but after 2 losses they are eliminated from BCS contention. This doesn't mean they aren't a very good football team though. They went into Baylor and took out the 7-5 Bears 53-24 last week. This is an impressive win. QB Landry Jones passed for 325 yards, 3 TDs, and an INT. RB DeMarco Murray carried the ball 13 times for 62 yards and a TD. He was much better catching passes out of the backfield. He ended the game with 6 catches for 120 yards, including a short pass where he ran 76 yards untouched to the end zone. WR Ryan Broyles had 12 catches for 112 yards and a TD to become the first Sooner to catch 100 passes in a season. 

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Both of Oklahoma's losses came on the road this year, but that win against Baylor delivered a statement that they can win anywhere. Playing on the road against the Cowboys wont faze them. This doesn't mean we are discounting the Cowboys home field advantage though!

The defense of the Sooners has allowed them to win the turnover battle in three consecutive games. In that span they have sacked opposing QBs just 3 times. It will be important for them to keep pressure on the Cowboys QB Weeden. He can be a prolific passer and containing him should and will be priority #1.

Believe it or not, Mike Gundy's defense has been solid this year. They held lowly Kansas to 289 yards and 14 points, and before that held Texas to 16 and Baylor to 28. They have been strong against the run, but are getting burned in the secondary. Oklahoma is solid enough to go after them both ways so it will be interesting to see how the Cowboys hold up on defense.

Our numbers indicate a play on Oklahoma, but this is one of those spots where we are going to go against those numbers. We make the game even, which makes the field goal worth taking here. In fact, our score prediction comes up 36-33, with Oklahoma on top in a shootout. But a game like this is a little more difficult than just stats. There's a long history here, one that favors the Sooners big time. Oklahoma State hasn't won this game since 2002. There's been a couple of close games mixed in with Oklahoma blowouts.

One angle we frequently discuss is that of a team that's been dominated by another, finally closing the talent gap to a point where they can compete and have a legitimate chance to win. This is one such chance for the Cowboys. Throw these two teams on a neutral field and let them play 100 times and we'll likely see each team win 50. Play the game at Oklahoma State, throw in revenge multiplied by 8, and the Big 12 South Title and we think Oklahoma State wins the game 55 or more times. With the number likely less than a field goal by kickoff, we'll go ahead and lay it. Oklahoma State -3 or less



 

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