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Big 12 Football Week 5 Picks

Can Iowa State break KU’s ATS momentum?

(HR) This is a craps table. With the passage of Amendment 50, casinos in Black Hawk, Central City and Cripple creek will now have Craps and Roulette and a new $100 limit instead of the current $5 limit. 17 investigators with the Division of Gaming in Cent Photo By Helen H. Richardson/The Denver Post via Getty Images

Last Week: 3-3

Overall: 21-13-1

Oklahoma (-6.5) @ TCU Sat. 11:00 ABC OU 38-27

I am not a believer in TCU yet. Colorado is trash and SMU is not what they have been since their coach of recent years is now at TCU. Oklahoma on the other hand lost at home to the only team they have faced that may be any good. If Venables is a good head coach, the Sooners will bounce back this week and win based on roster talent alone. I am not sure he is, but I will take the Sooners this week to cover.

Texas Tech @ K-State (-8) Sat. 11:00 ESPN+ K-State 31-24

This is a matchup of the numbers 4 and 5 teams in my ranking this week and a matchup of teams who both pulled off upsets last week. I do not think I would ever bet real money on a game where Adrain Martinez is a quarterback. It is so hard to know what you will get with him. Can Martinez follow up on last week’s performance with another above-average performance this week? Maybe. I think the Wildcats win, but I will take the Red Raiders to cover the 8 points.

Iowa St. (-3) @ Kansas Sat. 2:30 ESPN2 KU 41-35

There is no way I am jumping off the bandwagon this week. KU continues to not only win this season, but they also continue to cover the spread each week. I have seen some of you start to resign yourselves to a loss this week. “The bar is finally too high for the Jayhawks” seems to be the sentiment, but is it?

Let’s take a quick look at Iowa State. The team from Ames has played two no doubt creampuffs, Southeast Missouri and Ohio, and handled them convincingly. Fine. They played instate rival Iowa at Iowa City and won. Nice, a normally a loss for them, not this year. But Iowa is a team with a better chance of scoring points on defense than with their offense. Iowa is not a good team, is not ranked, and is not even receiving votes. Iowa’s SP+ offensive ranking? 101. So a nice win but not impressive. Last week Iowa State had Baylor at home and suffer a rather decisive loss despite the final score. Baylor’s offensive SP+ rank this week? 47. KU’s offensive SP+ this week is 26, easily outpacing both of Iowa State’s best opponents. Last week Iowa State gave up 31 points at home to an offense not as good as KU’s. Do you expect Iowa State’s defense to do better on the road? I think not. “But KU’s defense!” you say. You are right KU’s defense lags far behind. Iowa State’s defensive SP+ is 26 compared to KU’s 89. But, to date, our defense has met every challenge presented to it. West Virginia’s offense SP+ 36, Houston’s offensive SP+ 28, Iowa States’? 49. The defense has faced better and met the challenge each time, on the road. Instead of worrying too much about how KU’s defense is going to hold up, ask “How is Iowa State going to stop the best offense they have faced yet?” Again the offensive SP+ rankings are Iowa 101, Baylor 47, and KU 26.

Lastly, check yourselves. Do you believe what most of you are spouting? Do you really believe KU is a top-25 team or not? Except for the AP voters themselves, practically everyone believes KU is a Top-25 team. Last week Iowa State lost at home, decisively, to the #16 team in the country. If you believe KU is a top-25, then you believe KU is relatively close to Baylor’s level. If you believe KU is a top-25 team, why would you not believe KU will win a home game against an unranked Iowa State? Give me the home dog to win outright.

Oklahoma St. @ Baylor (-2.5) Sat. 2:30 FOX Baylor 31-27

The Cowboys had a bye last week before making the trip to Waco this week. Baylor ended up with a fairly comfortable win over Iowa State in Ames. In my ranking of the conference, this is a matchup of the 2 and 3 teams. Baylor has played the better schedule, and though they lost to BYU, they are more tested and ready for this matchup. The Cowboys have yet to really play a team of any quality, ASU is not a quality opponent this season. I will roll with the Bears.

West Virginia @ Texas (-9.5) Sat. 6:30 FS1 Texas 38-32

It is a battle for the cellar in Austin this week when my number 10 West Virginia visits number 9 Texas. The Longhorns left Austin for the first time this season last week and found the road inhospitable. Back in Austin this week the home cooking will taste better. West Virginia will not be much of a threat but will get a late score to cover the 9.5.

Week 4 Results

Game/Line Prediction Actual W/L/P
Game/Line Prediction Actual W/L/P
West Virginia @ Virginia Tech (-1.5) West Virginia 35-24 WV 33-10 W
Baylor @ Iowa St.(-3) Baylor 31-27 Baylor 31-24 W
TCU @ SMU (-2) SMU 27-24 TCU 42-34 L
Duke @ Kansas (-7.5) KU 51-36 KU 35-27 W
Texas (-6.5) @ Texas Tech Texas 32-24 Texas Tech 37-34 L
K-State (-13) @ Oklahoma OU 42-24 K-State 41-34 L