Oklahoma St. (-14) at Iowa St. 3:30 ET ESPN
2* Iowa State
Oklahoma St. travels to Ames, IA for this 3:30 ET kick against Big 12 rival Iowa St. as televised by ESPN. Last year, Oklahoma St. won this game (37-20) in Stillwater, but only outgained the Cyclones 400-332. One could consider that this is a dominance matchup with the Cowboys winning (58-27) on this field two years ago and (31-10) vs. Iowa St., 3 years ago in Stillwater. We will opt for the “sandwich” theory in a game where the public figures to be all over Oklahoma St.
Not Baylor, not Oklahoma, not TCU…no, it is Oklahoma St. at 9-0 SU for the season and 6-0 SU in Big 12 conference play who leads this high-scoring league. Yes, the Cowboys are scoring 45 PPG and allowing a decent 24/391 (for the Big 12) on the defensive side of the ball. But, even HC Gundy bemoans their lack of a running game, which is averaging 143/3.9. It figures to be their undoing before the end of the season. Speaking of remaining games, how about this negative situation for the Cowboys? Last week, Oklahoma St. improved their record to 9-0 SU with a (49-29) win vs. TCU. In that contest, they were outrushed 213-85, out-passed 445-375 giving up 658 yards to the Horned Frogs. Look no further than a (+4) net TO margin as the reason for the victory! Now, they must travel to Iowa St. to face a Cyclone team they have dominated in recent seasons, knowing they close their season at home in the next 2 weeks against currently undefeated Baylor, followed by “Bedlam” against arch-rival Oklahoma. Talk about your road favorite “sandwich” spot!
Yet, few will be interested in backing an Iowa St. team who is 3-6 SU for the season and is virtually assured of missing post-season play for the 4th consecutive season. Much like last year, when they allowed 39/529 on the defensive side of the ball, they are this season allowing 32/480. That lack of defense was evident in last week’s (52-16) wipeout at Oklahoma when they ceded 689 yards to Oklahoma. Who signs up to back that kind of team? That is especially true with the realization that their youthful QB Lanning is making only his 3rd start. Before we completely write-off the Cyclones, let’s give credit to the fact they will draw good vibes from their previous appearance on this field (a 24-0 home shut out of Texas).
Few will be interested in putting the college football ODDS in their favor to back an Iowa St. team, whom they consider to be a towel-tosser vs. an Oklahoma St. team, whom they consider to be a super-surger. Considering the Cowboys’ “sandwich” situation and the positive feeling Iowa St. will have after their victory on this field two weeks ago, you will be making a wise decision if you join me for our college football pick on Iowa St.