The Oklahoma Sooners are set to face the Oklahoma State Cowboys this weekend. Check out our college football odds series, which includes our Oklahoma-Oklahoma State prediction, odds, and pick.
Oklahoma has won the last six Big 12 championships, beginning in 2015, when Lincoln Riley was Bob Stoops' offensive coordinator. Riley spent two years under Stoops and then took over from the icon to lead the Sooners in his own right. Riley has never failed to win the Big 12 title since taking the baton from his former boss. However, if he loses this game to Oklahoma State, Riley's mastery of the Big 12 will come to an end, or at least be interrupted. It's a point of pride for Oklahoma to have made each Big 12 Championship Game since the event returned in 2017 after a seven-year hiatus dating back to 2010. Oklahoma beat TCU in 2017, Texas in 2018, Baylor in 2019, and Iowa State in 2020. Oklahoma has done really well in the Bedlam Series against Oklahoma State, as college football odds historians know well. Yet, when thinking about an Oklahoma-Oklahoma State pick, the calculus for this game might not be that simple.
Oklahoma State barely beat Boise State early in the season. It came back to beat Texas on the road. The Cowboys did not begin the campaign as a dominant team, but they have progressively gotten stronger and tougher as the season has moved on. They smothered a Texas Tech team last weekend which — a week earlier — had knocked off Matt Campbell and Iowa State. That's the same Iowa State team which defeated Oklahoma State earlier in the season. The real difference for the Pokes — something to consider when formulating an Oklahoma-Oklahoma State pick — is defensive coordinator Jim Knowles, who has cultivated an elite defense in a conference known for its offenses. Oklahoma State simply doesn't give anything away cheaply, and it's why the Cowboys are in the top 10 with a chance to make the College Football Playoff.
Here’s how the bookmakers have set the odds:
College Football odds: Oklahoma-Oklahoma State Odds
Oklahoma: +4.5 (-114)
Oklahoma State: -4.5 (-106)
Over: 49.5 (-108)
Under: 49.5 (-112)
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Why Oklahoma Could Cover the Spread
The Sooners own Bedlam. They view Oklahoma State as Little Brother in this rivalry, but what's much more important is that they play with the confidence and swagger of a team which knows it is better and expects to play well. Some teams play with overconfidence, assuming they will win. That's not the same thing. Some teams think they can just show up and win, and that their natural talent will prevail. Oklahoma plays with enjoyment and a sense of fun when it enters Bedlam against the Cowboys. The Sooners crave victory and pursue it. Even though Oklahoma is a 4.5-point underdog, this team becomes different and better when it faces Oklahoma State.
Why Oklahoma State Could Cover the Spread
The Jim Knowles difference on defense could be the answer which stops Oklahoma's six-year Big 12 title streak. Oklahoma State has not had a defense this good in previous years. Lincoln Riley could scheme his way around Mike Gundy with OSU having a weak defense. Not this year, not this time. The Cowboys are profoundly tougher, and that will show up for anyone thinking about an Oklahoma-Oklahoma State pick.
Final Oklahoma-Oklahoma State Prediction & Pick
The confidence Oklahoma brings to this matchup is never to be underestimated. Oklahoma State is playing better right now, but once Bedlam begins, the Sooners usually improve and acquire a different, more rugged personality.
Final Oklahoma-Oklahoma State Pick: Oklahoma +4.5