The bye week couldn’t have come at a better for the Oklahoma Sooners, wouldn’t you say? OU will be looking to rebound from a mind-boggling loss to Texas while also making a leadership transition on defense after the firing of Mike Stoops. This is going to allow everyone to regroup, reflect and re-engage heading into the back nine (or back six) of the regular season. On a personal level, this is going to be my first opportunity to just sit around and watch college football on a couch with a drink in hand, which is going to be a nice change of pace. I also won’t spend the entire lead-up stressing about this defense or my entire Saturday night/Sunday morning dwelling on a performance. This is a chance for all of the us to recharge, particularly on an emotional level.
Anyway, here are my gambling picks for this week’s games. Allen did it last weekend (and did a fantastic job), but let’s see if I can have a bit more luck than he did. I can’t let him show me up on just one opportunity. You can also find the TV schedule and live stream info down at the bottom.
Texas Tech at TCU (-7.5) – The Horned Frogs, who currently sit at 3-2, could easily be 5-0 with wins over Ohio State and Texas if not for a problematic tendency to turn the ball over in crucial situations. We can go back and forth with those hypotheticals all we want, but the bottom line is that it seems quite clear that this team can still challenge for a spot in Arlington. Having said that, the chances of that might fly out the window with a Thursday loss. Meanwhile, Texas Tech starter Alan Bowman is currently listed as ‘doubtful’ for this one, leaving Jett Duffey to take on the task of pulling off the road upset. Duffey certainly had his moments in the second half of the game against West Virginia, but the moment seemed too big for him at times. Gambling pick: TCU covers at home and Gary Patterson sweats a whole lot. Over 59
Oklahoma State (-7) at Kansas State – Kansas State’s inept offense doesn’t seem like it will pose much of a threat to this shaky OSU defense. However, if K-State pulls this off, things could begin to truly unravel in Stillwater (as if that doesn’t already appear to be happening). Gambling pick: Oklahoma State covers somewhat comfortably. Under 62
Georgia (-7.5) at LSU – The Dawgs haven’t really played anyone of note other than Missouri, but I don’t think anyone is questioning their talent. Jake Fromm has picked up where he left off last season by playing mistake-free football and letting his supporting cast make things happen, and he’s been quite efficient in the process, completing 72.8 percent of his passes and averaging 10.53 yards per attempt. His team is also much more complete than the one it’s facing. Gambling pick: Georgia covers. Under 50.5
Washington (-3.5) at Oregon – The matchup between the Oregon offense and the Washington defense should be a doozy. UO QB Justin Herbert is sixth nationally in QB Rating, while the UW defense has its share of future NFL talent — particularly in the secondary. Each of these squads were a bad break away from staying undefeated, but I’ll give the edge to Washington in this underrated rivalry game because of their physicality and superior defense. Gambling pick: Washington covers. Over 58
Baylor at Texas (-14) – This is kind of a weird one. I could easily picture Texas suffering from a severe hangover, but Baylor’s defense just allowed Kansas State to gain nearly 500 yards of total offense. Additionally, UT’s DBs are some of the few who can match up physically with Baylor’s receivers. Gambling pick: Texas covers. Under 60.5
West Virginia (-6.5) at Iowa State – This one has become a bit of a trendy upset pick, but despite Brock Purdy’s success in Stillwater, I could imagine the freshman QB coming back down to earth against the Mountaineers. Having said that, Iowa State is going to be fired up, its fan base is going to be lit like a Christmas tree, and West Virginia has looked mortal in recent weeks. Gambling pick: West Virginia wins a close one, but Iowa State beats the spread. Over 56
Wisconsin at Michigan (-9.5) – I’ve been riding the ‘Wisconsin isn’t actually good’ train for quite some time. Meanwhile, Michigan has looked dominant at home and has a substantial edge as far as athleticism is concerned. Gambling pick: Give me Michigan to cover. Under 49