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Football Pick With Analysis
Both of these teams will be looking at this game as a must win if they want to be placed in a decent bowl game. It may be early to say that, but looking at their future schedules, it will be hard for either one of them to get one more win. Both schools have four remaining games against teams in the Top 25, that's how deep the Big 12 is. TCU is coming off a gruesome home loss to Texas Tech in three overtimes, 53-56. Oklahoma State lost their starting QB as they handled Iowa State's offense in a 31-10 win.
Even though the Horned Frogs have been playing tough, they still come in as 7-point underdogs. Since this is the first year TCU is in the Big 12, these teams haven't played since 1993. Both teams have a losing record against the spread this year. Since Casey Pachall left the team, the over has hit three straight times for TCU. On the other end, OK State has seen two straight unders.
Pachall's replacement has done more than bookmakers thought he would be able to do. Trevone Boykin has come in and put up a lot of points for TCU. In just three starts he has 937 yards and 10 TDs. However, whereas Pachall was extremely efficient, Boykin has already tossed five interceptions including two last week in a 3-point loss. The Cowboys have had trouble against gunslingers as seen in their defeats to Arizona and Texas. Boykin has a few options to look to in the passing game without a true standout. Josh Boyce has been his most consistent target though, grabbing 21 balls in his last three games for two TDs. Boykin has helped a bit in the running game with his 4.1 yards per carry average, but most of the touches go to a trio of RBs. Freshman B.J. Catalon has seen the most looks lately and leads the team with 319 yards.
Once known for a tough defense, TCU has fallen apart in recent weeks giving up 37 points to Iowa State and 56 to Texas Tech. The Cowboys come in scoring over 45 points per game, but have only managed 51 total in their last two Big 12 matchups. Another important note is that their starting QB, J.W. Walsh, is out for the season. Former starter Wes Lunt will likely takeover, but he isn't completely healthy yet so that is still undecided.
In his only real challenge of the season, the freshman Lunt tossed for 436 yards and four TDs against Arizona in the second week. He also had three costly interceptions which was a main reason they ended up losing. The QB spot will be a heavily talked about subject entering this game with TCU. No matter who is at the helm, running back Joseph Randle will need to put in a top performance, much like he did last week against Iowa State when he tallied 151 yards and two TDs. Through just six games, Randle already has 128 carries for 765 yards and eight touchdowns. The Horned Frogs have actually been pretty solid against the run as well which isn't good for the Cowboys.
The numbers point to the over in this one where it is 46-18-1 in OK State's last 65 home games. The only stat from TCU's side is that the over is 5-0 in their last five October games. There aren't many telling trends with these two teams.
The numbers point towards these two teams being relatively equal in strength. Our model predicts an upset straight up win by TCU by 3 and that's the way we are going to go here. At one point this week you could have taken +9.5 with TCU, but we're not as concerned with this line move as it's not crossing any key numbers (although +8 would be worth looking for). TCU +7.5
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