It’s Week 11 and there’s a full slate of seven Big 12 games on the docket this week. Here are the Big 12 plays that I like this week.
Saturday, November 18th at 11:00 p.m. CT
Oklahoma -24.5, Total: 57 (Odds via DraftKings Sportsbook)
The Sooners finally looked like the best version of themselves last week as they absolutely blasted West Virginia in Norman, 59-20. Oklahoma put up over 600 yards of offense, over 8.0 yards per play and Dillon Gabriel threw for over 400 yards and five scores, adding three more on the ground. That was the type of performance we had been waiting for from the Sooners and it sure looked like they took out two weeks worth of frustration on Mountaineers. It was also the best day possible for the Sooners in across the Big 12 as the door is now slightly ajar for OU to steal the second spot in Arlington.
On the BYU side of things, a season that started 5-2 for the Cougars looks like a season that is going to end with a bowl bid. BYU was an embarrassment for the third consecutive week as they were never competitive with Iowa State as the Cyclones went to Provo and won by 32. Jake Retzlaff was completely outmatched for the second straight week and Kalani Sitake’s seat should be very hot if BYU doesn’t find a way to pull an upset either this week or next week in Stillwater. Now I don’t expect this game to be particularly tight and Oklahoma will win pretty comfortably. But we are talking about getting over 3.5 touchdowns with a home team in a conference game. That is a very rare occurrence, this game also starts at 10:00 a.m. local time in Provo so a sleepy start for both teams is very possible. We’ll take the 24.5 points with BYU.
PICK: BYU +24.5
Saturday, November 18th at 1:30 p.m. CT
West Virginia -6.5, Total: 54.5 (Odds via DraftKings Sportsbook)
It was a burn-the-tape game for the Mountaineers last week in Norman, the defense was a disaster and the offense struggled to move the ball and turned it over twice. But thankfully for WVU, Cincinnati is still a bottom-two team in the Big 12 despite their win at Houston a week ago. This is the perfect spot for Garrett Greene to bounce back against a defense that is not the class as OU and I would expect the West Virginia defense to play even though they have had only one good performance in the past month.
Cincinnati finally got their first conference last week as they handled Houston on the road. That game had more to do with Houston to me than it did with Cincy. The Cougars were completely unprepared and looked like the team that was at the bottom of the Big 12 for the majority of the year. Credit to the Bearcats for taking full advantage and not completely giving up a week after their bowl chances ended. I don’t see back-to-back big efforts from Cincy and this is a great spot for West Virginia to get themselves right after taking it on the chin from OU last week. The Mountaineers win this one by two scores.
PICK: West Virginia -6.5
Saturday, November 18th at 5:00 p.m. CT
Texas Tech -3.0, Total: 42.5 (Odds via DraftKings Sportsbook)
Both of these teams are coming off of upset wins a week ago. Let’s start with UCF, the Knights absolutely dismantled Oklahoma State. The Knights averaged over 8 yards per play and they completely held the Pokes offense in check for the biggest blowout ever by an unranked team over a ranked team. UCF fans should be thinking that this season would have looked much different with a healthy John Rhys Plumlee as the Knights have looked like a Top 25 team in every game he has played the majority of the snaps.
For the Red Raiders, that was a season-saving win in Lawrence last week. The hot start and a great final drive were enough for Tech against KU’s third-string Quarterback. I am concerned about Tech’s ability to move the ball moving forward even with a healthy Behren Morton back in the fold. Now this one has bowl eligibility implications, the Red Raiders go to Austin next week where they will be underdogs against Texas. The Knights get Houston in Orlando. UCF will be a double-digit favorite in that one. Now I don’t love the “must-win” game angle but I think it works in this game. Tech finds a way to win to get their 6th win and bowl eligibility. We’ll lay the 3 here.
PICK: Texas Tech -3.0
I know there are two huge games in the league this week but I don’t have a play on either the Sunflower Showdown or Texas at Iowa State. There is too much uncertainty about the Quarterback position at Kansas even though if it happens to be Daniels or Bean, taking the points with the Jayhawks would be the way I would go. In Texas-Iowa State (Longhorns are favored, -7.5), the Cyclones have the defense to stay in the game against the Longhorns but I am concerned about Rocco Becht in this one, feels like it could be a multiple turnover day that helps the Horns out.
Here are some bonus bets for the road.
Northwestern +3.0 vs. Purdue
Utah +1.0 at Arizona
Kentucky -1.5 at South Carolina