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Oklahoma

vs.

Kansas

College Football

Free Pick

11/18/17

After a home loss to Iowa State, Oklahoma looked done for in College Football Playoff talk. However, that was more than a month ago and a lot has changed. In fact, all signs point to the Sooners making the playoff as long as they can win out. As expected for the Kansas game, they were -35 point road favorites early in the week at 5Dimes Sportsbook.

Oklahoma won this game 56-3 last season and played all of its backups in the fourth quarter, so that’s plenty of reason to take the Sooners again. With basketball season underway, Kansas fans have already flocked to a different sport, so this being a home game means little. The Jayhawks have been more competitive in recent games, from losing by 15 to Texas and 10 to Kansas State, so there’s at least been improvement from the combined 88-0 score line against Iowa State and TCU earlier in the year. But against Baker Mayfield, the Heisman favorite, no one in their right mind will bet Kansas in this game.

The Jayhawks are allowing 42.2 points per game and face one of, if not the best, offense in the country that’s scoring close to 45 points per contest. Mayfield has feasted on weaker defenses all season (31 TDs, 5 INTs) and had no problems against TCU last week, what many to believe the best defense in the conference. Mayfield should reach 300 yards again along with a few touchdowns, while Rodney Anderson and Trey Sermon do everything else out of the backfield. If Oklahoma doesn’t score 50 points, it’d be a surprise.

But covering this game will come down to the Oklahoma defense, which remains an issue, giving up 27 points per game, making any cover difficult for this team. In fact, the Sooners haven’t won by more than 22 points in any conference game this season and that includes beating Baylor 49-41. The question is what Oklahoma defense and Kansas offense will show up. The Jayhawks have been throttled by better defenses and scored just nine points against Baylor and 19 against Texas Tech. On the positive side, they scored 34 against WVU and 27 against Texas last week. Clearly, this situation is unpredictable.

Sophomore quarterback Carter Stanley has taken over for the Jayhawks with Peyton Bender on the bench. Stanley was the main reason they scored 27 against the Longhorns as he tossed three touchdowns, albeit with three picks. Only a few weeks ago, he had 418 yards against K State. Stanley maybe isn’t a great quarterback, but as long as that play continues with top wide out Steven Sims, Kansas could score enough to cover this game. KU’s run game hasn’t done much between Khalil Herbert and Taylor Martin, so that probably won’t be something to rely on.

Oklahoma’s defense was the reason it covered in this game last year and that will have to be the case again. The Sooners are 1-4 ATS in their last five road games vs. a team with a losing home record, while the Jayhawks are 1-4 ATS vs. a team with a winning record. The home team is 5-1 ATS in the last six meetings between these schools, but the Sooners are 4-1 ATS in the last five.

Our Pick - OVER 68

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