Oklahoma at Texas Tech Odds
|Oklahoma Odds||-15 [BET NOW]|
|Texas Tech Odds||+15 [BET NOW]|
|Moneyline||-715/+430 [BET NOW]|
|Over/Under||67 [BET NOW]|
|Time||Saturday, 8 p.m. ET|
Spencer Rattler and the Oklahoma Sooners travel to Lubbock, Texas, for the dreaded Texas Tech night game. Oklahoma has won back-to-back games and is on a bit of a roll after dropping two straight earlier in the season.
Texas Tech is historically frisky in this spot as a night game home underdog (9-4-0 ATS against AP top-25 opponents in the regular season with a kickoff of 8 p.m. ET or later since 2008), and the team is coming in with some momentum after notching its first Big 12 victory of the season last Saturday against West Virginia.
Even though home-field advantage may be mitigated this season with COVID-19 restrictions, this is a great spot for the Red Raiders, who are always up for the challenge under their own lights.
Can Oklahoma cover the massive spread in this one, or will new Texas Tech quarterback Henry Colombi keep the winning streak going?
While some will look at the final score of the Red River Showdown with Texas and think Oklahoma’s high-powered offense is back, this is not the typical Sooner O.
The unit’s Success Rate is down across the board compared to the prior two seasons. After posting a Success Rate of 53% and 52% in 2018 and 2019, respectively, the Rattler-led offense owns a Success Rate of 47% this season. That’s not bad by any means, but it’s not the typical Oklahoma offense with big-play potential.
The crux of the issue could be Rattler’s questionable decision-making at times — he has thrown five interceptions in five games this season — but the onus has fallen on the offensive line. The O-line — usually one of the strongest parts of Lincoln Riley’s team — has allowed 43 tackles for loss, 12th-most in the nation.
On top of that, the Oklahoma rush attack has been inconsistent, averaging a meager 3.6 yards per carry. Considering Kennedy Brooks opted out before the season after back-to-back 1,000-yard seasons, and early season standout Seth McGowan was nursing an injury, the Sooner running game has leaned on TJ Pledger. Pledger is starting to find his stride, posting back-to-back 100-yard games on the ground.
This is not a Havoc-driven Texas Tech defense. The Red Raiders have garnered only five turnovers through four games and rank toward the bottom of the country in tackles for loss, so Rattler should have time to throw on this defense. If he can take off the top of the Tech defense, points can come in bunches.
Oklahoma is still expecting defensive end Ronnie Perkins to be out, but the line stifled a relatively poor TCU offense last weekend. Texas Tech should be a different matchup for a Sooners defense that has been gashed all season by big plays, placing below the nation’s average in explosive rush and pass defense. Also, this is a run-and-gun Texas Tech offense, wasting no time getting to the next play. Can Oklahoma’s shaky defense keep up the pace over an uptempo game?
Texas Tech Red Raiders
Tech’s impressive win over West Virginia at home as 3-point underdogs was the team’s first conference win in four tries, but the team has been competitive throughout. If not for a series of unfortunate events against Texas, it would have left the high-scoring in-state battle with a win.
Texas Tech hung in with Kansas State as well, outgaining the Wildcats despite the 10-point loss. Now with Colombi under center, the team has seemingly found the rhythm it was looking for. He is completing over 75% of his passes for an average of fewer than seven yards per throw.
The Red Raiders’ quick and effective offense gave the Mountaineers some trouble, and I envision similar issues for an Oklahoma team that will try to pressure Colombi, only to see him already get rid of the ball. The Oklahoma defense may generate a pass rush, but past that, this defense gives up chunk plays often.
If Colombi gets the ball out, the Red Raiders’ offense is going to be on the move. With some tempo mixed in throughout the game, Tech should be able to hit for quick touchdowns. Mentioning its misleading record again, this Tech offense is just as good as — if not better than — Oklahoma from a Success Rate point of view, posting one of 48%. Oklahoma may have more weapons and look downfield in the passing game more often, but this isn’t as much of an offensive mismatch as the spread indicates.
Texas Tech’s defense is nothing to write home about, but it has gotten off the field on third down. In a game in which each team should light up the scoreboard, having a dependable third-down defense should help. The unit allows a 38% third-down conversion rate.
On top of that, Oklahoma’s averaging 35 yards per punt, well below the national average of nearly 42. If the Tech defense can generate some third-down stops and work with a shorter field, this game could be very interesting.
Betting Analysis & Pick
I’ll be on the Red Raiders in this one, and I feel comfortable playing it above +13. This will be Oklahoma’s fourth straight game away from Norman (if the Texas game is included), and I think that some wear and tear may catch up to them.
Texas Tech is also better than its record indicates. With a few better bounces, this team is .500 or better.
And don’t overlook the penalty differential in this one. Oklahoma is averaging over 85 yards per game in penalties, ninth-most in the country. If the Sooners are going to be giving away free yardage, Tech — which averages 38 penalty yards per game — can hang around.
I’m still not buying this Oklahoma team that lacks general efficiency and may be a little down after such a long time away from the friendly confines of Norman.
I’ll take Tech at +14.5 and root for a high-scoring, back-and-forth affair on Saturday night.
Pick: Texas Tech +14 (down to +13)