Pick – Analysis
The Big 12 title — as well as a possible College Football Playoff spot — comes down to this Game for Oklahoma. The Sooners took down Baylor and TCU the past two weeks and now have to travel to Oklahoma State to close the deal. The Cowboys could still win the Conference themselves, but will need help after losing to Baylor last week. The Sooners are a -6.5 point road favorite as seen at 5 Dimes Sportsbook.
Oklahoma is the hottest team in the Conference since losing to Texas a couple months ago. Unfortunately, they haven’t gotten the most respect in the CFP rankings, although that would surely change if they could beat Baylor, TCU and OK State in consecutive weeks. Like last year, the Big 12 winner will be hurt by having no title Game, and could be a reason Oklahoma doesn’t make the Top 4 even if they win this one.
Oklahoma State had the Big 12 title in its hands, but couldn’t take down Baylor last week and now could finish the season with two losses and possibly out of a New Year’s Day bowl Game. To win the Big 12, the Cowboys would need to win here and then hope Baylor falls in one of its last two Games.
Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield was knocked out of the TCU win with a concussion, but backup Trevor Knight got the job done… for the most part. The good news is that Mayfield is probable for this Game after passing all of the needed tests. Obviously, that’s a big boost as Mayfield has run this offense well with 39 total TDs and only 5 INTs for the season. With a big Game here, Mayfield could even be in Heisman discussions. Still, it’s been the OU running Game that has been the bigger help as Samaje Perine has put in huge back-to-back Games for the Sooners, totaling 354 yards and 3 TDs. The same can be said about wide receiver Sterling Shepard, and those two will be OK State’s first order of work on defense.
It won’t be easy, though, as the Cowboys defense has struggled in most Games this year. They allowed 45 points to Baylor last week and 31 to Iowa State the week before. As long as Mayfield is in, Oklahoma could easily hit that 40-point mark as well.
Because of that, Oklahoma State will have to keep up on the scoreboard. They tried their best against Baylor as Mason Rudolph threw for 430 yards and three touchdowns, but without a running Game, the Cowboys offense just couldn’t get the job done. That’ll likely be the case in this Game because OK State’s running Game has been close to non-existent for most of the year. Rudolph may throw for 400 yards against Oklahoma, but once again, that probably won’t be enough if they can’t stop Mayfield on the other side.
This matchup has been mostly dominated by the Sooners, but OK State won last year in Norman as a 21-point underdog. Oklahoma will be looking for revenge and as long as they play like they have the last two months, should get that revenge.
The Sooners are 4-1 ATS in the last five meetings at OK State. Also, the road team and underdog is 4-1 ATS in the last five overall meetings. All trends point to the over for these teams, which isn’t a surprise in the Big 12.
Our Pick – Sooners -6.5