No. 12 Texas Longhorns (3-0 SU, 2-1 ATS) vs. Oklahoma State Cowboys (2-1 SU, 2-1 ATS)
College Football Week 5
Date/Time: Saturday September 29th, 2012. 7:50PM Eastern
Where: Boone Pickens Stadium Stillwater, O.K
by Jay, Football Handicapper, Predictem.com
Point Spread: Tex-2/OSU +2
Over/Under Total: 66.5
For years Mack Brown and the Texas Longhorns dominated the Oklahoma State Cowboys by winning the first 12 meetings under Brown’s tenure. Of course Texas and Oklahoma were the two premier schools in the Big 12 for the majority of those seasons. However in recent years the competition around the conference has picked up, most notably from the Cowboys of Stillwater. Not only has Oklahoma State become a threat in the Big 12 in recent years but they have also racked up two straight wins over the Longhorns for the first time in school history. This Saturday night the Cowboys will get the chance to make it 3 in a row when the no. 12 Texas Longhorns visit Stillwater in a Big 12 Conference opener.
Oklahoma State is currently 2-1 on the season with their lone loss resulting in a 59-38 thumping on the road at Arizona. In the loss to Arizona, Oklahoma State QB Wes Lunt tossed 3 interceptions and the Cowboys defense collapsed to give up over 600 total yards. Overall it was a performance that Coach Mike Gundy had to put behind him for his young team. The Cowboys did bounce back to destroy Louisiana-Lafayette following the Arizona loss by a score of 65-24. However, the victory turned out to be rather costly as well. Starting QB Wes Lunt was knocked out of the game with a knee injury.
Despite having a bye week last Saturday, Lunt will still be held out of the Texas game leaving his duties to backup J.W Walsh. Walsh completed 21 of 30 passing for 347 yards and 4 scores against Louisiana-Lafayette in a brilliant performance. In all honesty, it appeared that Walsh had been the starter all along as the Cowboys offense never skipped a beat racking up 742 total yards of offense. Most importantly Walsh showed he has the confidence and ability to lead the Oklahoma State offense and Cowboys’ fans hope he can prove that this Saturday night against one of the premier defenses in the Big 12.
The Longhorns also had an extra week of preparation for this Saturday night’s affair. Texas completely destroyed Ole Miss 66-31 in their last outing in one of the most impressive out of conference performance in recent years. The Longhorns defense has been the team’s backbone over the past several seasons but the offense is getting the job done in 2012. Texas currently averages 512 yards per game of total offense including a monstrous 258 yards per game on the ground. Running backs Malcolm Brown and Joe Bergeron have both carried the ball 37 times each while averaging a strong 6 yards per carry. Both backs have nearly identical numbers and have punched in 3 touchdowns on the ground as well. So far no opponent has been able to stop the Texas ground attack and that spells trouble for an Oklahoma State defense that gave up nearly 200 yards rushing against Arizona.
Yet Texas is much more than just a strong rushing team. Starting QB David Ash has played flawlessly completing 76.4% passing for 704 yards with 7 scores and most importantly 0 interceptions. Ash had his biggest performance in the Longhorns biggest game to date against Ole Miss. The talented sophomore completed 19 of 23 passing for 326 yards and 4 scores against the Rebels defense. If Ash can put together another strong performance while getting help in the run game, I believe the Longhorns’ balance on offense will present many problems for the Cowboys defense. If that happens, we could have another classic shootout that everyone expects when you turn on the lights in Stillwater.
Jay’s Pick to Cover the Point Spread: I truly believe the Longhorns’ defense will be the difference in this ballgame. However, history is also a difficult thing to change as well. The Longhorns have not lost a conference opener since 2007 and Coach Mack Brown has never lost in Stillwater. Therefore, I will punch my ticket on the side of history and the better football team. Take Texas -2
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