College Football Pick
Oklahoma was the favorite to win the Big 12 and reach the College Football Playoff ahead of the season, but they’ve been far from either. While the Sooners remain undefeated in Conference play, allowing 86 points in their two wins doesn’t scream confidence. They take on a sneaky Kansas State team this weekend that no one has given much thought to so far and the Sooners are a -10.5 point favorite at betonline Sportsbook.
It’s likely last year’s result crept into some people’s minds and a reason why the line is at 10 points for this Game. Oklahoma hasn’t shown enough defensively for anyone to trust them by more than 10 points against decent Big 12 teams. That said, it’s hard to forget about last year’s 55-0 beat down by the Sooners. At that point, the Wildcats were close to done for and had too many injuries to beat a team like Oklahoma.
But this isn’t the same Sooners team, which is evident in the early going. Their defense isn’t at the same level, although their offense has picked it up against poor defenses in recent weeks. But if we look at last year’s result, we should also consider what K State did in this meeting two years ago, winning 31-30 in Norman.
Despite having two losses, Kansas State hasn’t looked all that bad, losing a tough opener at Stanford and then letting a lead slip away against West Virginia. They outscored Texas Tech last weekend, which is a reason to consider the Wildcats in this Game. This isn’t the same offense as a year ago and they should be able to Scoreon this Oklahoma defense.
At quarterback, Jesse Ertz has shown some consistency for the Wildcats. No, he’s not breaking any records, but at least he hasn’t gotten hurt, which was the case for everyone that stepped under center in 2015. Ertz doesn’t have the best arm, but he provides mobility with Charles Jones in the backfield. The Wildcats will surely have more success in this year’s matchup.
On the other end is the bigger question, but again, Kansas State hasn’t really had a bad outing. The team’s they’ve lost to are defensive-heavy ones. They gave up 504 passing yards to Patrick Mahomes last Game, but that’s a regularity. The more impressive thing is that Mahomes only had two touchdowns on his 62 pass attempts.
The Sooners will have plenty of success behind Baker Mayfield and company, there’s almost no doubting that. Samaje Perine had a breakout 214-yard performance last Game, so that’s another boost for this offense.
Oklahoma will probably Scorearound 40 points in this Game, but to cover, their defense will have to do something. Bill Snyder tends to thrive in an underdog role and it looks like he has this Kansas State team back to some relevance after a down season in which they battled injuries.
The Wildcats are 21-9-1 ATS vs. a team with a winning record and 18-7-1 ATS in their last 26 road Games against a team with a winning home record. The Sooners have covered in seven of their last nine Conference Games, but one of those non-covers was last week and they are 1-5 ATS in their last six overall.
Our Pick – Kansas State went from alternating wins and losses with the Sooners the previous 4 years, including a 31-30 win in 2014, to losing 55-0 last year. Sure, talent changes from year to year, but it doesn’t change THAT much.
If you want to see a perfect example of why you don’t lay significant points with bad defensive teams, just look at last weeks Oklahoma/Texas result. The Sooners defense is poor.
Kansas State has a big time revenge motive working for them here with a chance to avenge their worst loss to the Sooners since 1974. Of course, as we always say, in order to obtain revenge, a team has to be capable of it to begin with. Kansas State is plenty capable. Kansas State +10.5