If there’s one thing Big 12 bettors have to look forward to this week, it’s that they won’t get burned by both Texas (2-1) AND Oklahoma (1-2) this time around. Both schools lost last week after being favored by more than a touchdown.
Texas fell in the Top 25 rankings from No. 5 to No. 22. Oklahoma’s second consecutive loss plummeted them from No. 3, to out of the Top 25 entirely, seriously hurting the Big 12’s hopes of landing a team in the College Football Playoff.
Both the Longhorns and Sooners need to get back on track, and have a golden opportunity to do just that on Saturday. Kickoff is scheduled for 12:00 P.M. Eastern on FOX., with Oklahoma favored by 2 points with an over/under of 72.
Texas Longhorns – Learn to Close Out
Two weeks ago, the Longhorns needed an epic 15-point fourth-quarter comeback to beat unranked Texas Tech. After leading 38-28 in the third quarter, a series of miscues saw the lead slip away. Down 56-41 with 3:13 remaining, senior quarterback Sam Ehlinger marched Texas down the field twice to tie the game, then threw the game-winning touchdown in overtime.
Last week, Texas again had a fourth quarter lead, this time 29-26, but fell behind after allowing TCU’s Max Duggan to scamper for 26 yards into the end zone and take a 33-29 lead. Ehlinger again brought the Longhorns down the field and into scoring position, but Keontae Ingram fumbled the ball at the one-yard line and the Horned Frogs recovered. TCU took a safety as time expired to run out the clock and end the game with a 33-31 win.
The Longhorns are a relatively experienced group, with upperclassmen at key positions on both sides of the ball. While the Texas Tech comeback was impressive, the Longhorns should never have been in that position. Similarly, Texas shouldn’t have found itself trailing TCU. They cannot continue to chase games if they hope to remain in the Top 25.
Oklahoma – Sooner, Rather than Later
Oklahoma’s season is already in free fall. One of the highest-ranked teams in the preseason polls, the Sooners were in a great position to win their sixth consecutive Big 12 title and return to the College Football Playoff.
Instead, Oklahoma finds itself at the bottom of the Big 12 standings, ahead of only Kansas and Texas Tech due to the Sooners’ non-conference win over Missouri State. Freshman quarterback Spencer Rattler has been truly impressive, already among the top quarterbacks in college football in touchdowns and passing yards, but the defense has not been up to par. Stopping Ehlinger’s offense will be paramount for the Sooners to salvage their season.
Oklahoma imploded each of the past two games, blowing a 35-14 lead against Kansas State two weeks ago and a 30-23 fourth quarter lead against Iowa State last Saturday. A loss on Saturday would end any CFP hopes, and make defending their run of Big 12 titles nearly impossible.
The Pick Is In – Something’s Gotta Give
Both Texas and Oklahoma have failed to cover the spread in their last two games. Oklahoma did win the 2019 matchup 34-27 in Norman, but this is a different OU team right now. The Longhorns and Sooners games combined for 66 and 67 total points in last week’s games, so Saturday’s tilt could be high scoring.
With a spread of only two points, this game is nearly a pick ‘em. When in doubt, go with the home team and expect a shootout as well. Take Oklahoma (-2), and add the over (72)