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Oklahoma owns the edge in the rivalry with Texas over recent seasons, winning six of the last eight meetings straight up. But the Longhorns are 5-0 against the spread over the last five meetings, pulling off a couple of upsets, keeping other meetings close. Who’s the smart bet for the 113th edition of the Red River Shootout on Saturday afternoon at the Cotton Bowl?
College football point spread: The Sooners opened as eight-point favorites, according to sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark. (Line updates and matchup report)
College football betting pick, via OddsShark computer: 42.2-26.6 Sooners (College football picks on every game)
Why the Oklahoma Sooners can cover the spread
The Sooners reached 5-0 on the season with a 66-33 blitz of Baylor last week. Oklahoma punted on its first possession of the game, then scored touchdowns on four of its next five. The Sooners led 28-6 midway through the second quarter, let the Bears get to 35-23 midway through the third before pulling away with a 21-3 run to pull away on their way to the covering as 21-point favorites.
On the day Oklahoma racked up 607 yards of total offense, as quarterback Kyler Murray threw for 432 yards and six touchdowns and ran for another score. And while the OU defense officially gave up 493 yards of Baylor offense, nearly three quarters of that came while protecting that big lead.
The spread on this week’s game is the shortest the Sooners have faced this season. Over the last three-plus seasons Oklahoma is 8-2 ATS when favored by fewer than 10 points.
Why the Texas Longhorns can cover the spread
The Longhorns ride a four-game winning streak into this week, following a 19-14 victory at Kansas State last week. Texas took an early 7-0 lead on a 90-yard punt return for a score by freshman D’Shawn Jamison, drove its next possession 89 yards to a touchdown and led 19-0 at the half. The Longhorns then allowed the Wildcats to get within one score with about 10 minutes to go but used two drives that produced four first downs and a defensive stop to run out the clock.
Offensively the Longhorns converted eight of 14 third downs into first downs and didn’t commit a turnover. Defensively Texas limited the Wildcats to just 217 yards of total offense and 2.7 yards per rushing attempt.
Two weeks ago the Longhorns toppled TCU 31-16 and three weeks ago they defeated USC 37-14. So they’ve already beaten a couple of quality opponents this season.
Smart betting pick
Last year Oklahoma led Texas 20-0 in the second quarter, fell down to the Longhorns 24-23 but took the lead for good midway through the fourth and hung on for a 29-24 win. However, Texas covered as a nine-point dog. And the Longhorns are better now than they were that day. Also, Texas is 8-1 ATS its last nine times out as an underdog. Smart money here likes the Longhorns and the points.
College football betting trends
Oklahoma is 0-5 ATS in its last five games vs. Texas.
The total has gone under in 16 of Texas’s last 18 games vs its conference.
Texas is 5-0 ATS in its last five games in October.
All college football odds and betting trends according to Bleacher Report’s official odds partner, OddsShark. Check out OddsShark on Twitter and Instagram or head to YouTube for more betting picks and analysis on this week’s top games. You can also download the free odds tracker app.