These teams aren’t playing for the Big 12 title, but a better bowl is always worth fighting for and winning this game would help matters. Both teams are coming off arguably their best wins of the season so it’ll be interesting to see how they follow those up. The Cowboys were -3 point home favorites with an over/under of 64.5 early in the week.
This game will likely go similar to last year’s matchup as the teams aren’t much different when TCU won 31-24 at home. The Horned Frogs used their rushing attack to gain control early and never let go and that’s exactly how the Cowboys want to win this game.
OK State has turned into a run-first offense behind Chuba Hubbard, who is almost guaranteed to rush for 100 yards in every game. He already has 1,381 rushing yards and 16 touchdowns on 6.4 yards per carry.
Quarterback Spencer Sanders also likes to run as seen in his 500 rushing yards, but they won at Iowa State last week because he completed more passes than usual. That may have to be the case again because TCU has a good rush defense, allowing 103.7 yards per game. While Hubbard will get to 100 yards, if he doesn’t average more than six yards per carry, Sanders will be needed to win.
That’s because OK State’s defense is still a question, allowing 274.1 passing yards and 162.6 rushing yards per game. However, it gave up 45 points in back-to-back outings and then picked off Iowa State’s quarterback three times last game and held them to 27 points on the road. It wouldn’t be surprising if their defense stepped up again because trusting TCU quarterback Max Duggan on the road is a tough bet.
Duggan was great against Texas last week, yet Texas may have the worst pass defense in the conference. Overall, he’s completing 58.6% of his passes for 6.8 yards per attempt and has led the offense to 41 points in the last two road games.
That said, there’s a chance he’s not needed if Darius Anderson and Sewo Olonilua can have success in the ground game, which is possible since TCU is averaging 5.1 yards per carry as a team. But while Anderson has big numbers on the season, he has just 132 yards in the last three games. Duggan and Olonilua have picked up the slack, but they haven’t been the most consistent.
The Horned Frogs have the better defense, but trusting Duggan on the road won’t be easy. And if the Pokes get Hubbard going, which has been the case against just about everyone, it’ll be tough for the Frogs to find an edge in the matchup.
The over is 4-1 in TCU’s last five conference games, while OK State is 8-1 ATS in its last nine against a team with a winning record. The underdog has covered the last four meetings between these schools, but the home team is 5-2 ATS in the last seven.
Our Pick – Oklahoma State -3