Last Updated Aug 30, 2021, 10:01 AM
Friday's Tip Sheet
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Oklahoma at West Virginia
-- As of Wednesday, most betting shops had Oklahoma (10-1 straight up, 4-7 against the spread) installed as a 2.5-point favorite for this Big 12 showdown at Milan Puskar Stadium. The total was 84 points and WVU was available on the money line for a +120 return (paid $120 on $100 wagers). By Thursday night, however, the Sooners were 3.5-point ‘chalk’ and the total was up to 85. Most spots had the Mountaineers at +140 to win outright (risk $100 to win $140).
-- Lincoln Riley’s team hasn’t missed a beat offensively despite losing Heisman Trophy winner, Baker Mayfield. Kyler Murray, a former five-star recruit who initially went to Texas A&M, has been nothing short of sensational. Murray has connected on 70.3 percent of his passes for 3,310 yards with a 34/6 touchdown-to-interception ratio. He’s an explosive runner as well, rushing for 739 yards and 10 TDs while averaging 7.1 yards per carry. Murray was the ninth overall pick in the 2018 MLB Draft by the Oakland A’s. The plan was to play as the starting QB at OU for one season and then report to A’s spring training in early 2019. However, there’s some optimism in Norman that Murray might consider returning for another season next year.
-- Murray has the second-shortest odds to win the Heisman Trophy at [...], where he has +500 odds. Alabama QB Tua Tagovailoa is the -750 ‘chalk.’
-- Marquise ‘Bollywood Brown has a team-high 59 receptions for 1,021 yards and eight TDs, while CeeDee Lamb has 46 grabs for 829 yards and nine TDs. Lee Morris has 19 receptions for 426 yards and eight TDs.
-- When Rodney Anderson went down with a season-ending injury, the bulk of the carries were left to RBs Trey Sermon and Kennedy Brooks. Both players have been up to the task – and then some. Sermon has 851 rushing yards, 10 TDs and a 6.4 yards-per-carry average, and Brooks has rushed for 811 yards, 11 TDs and is averaging 9.9 YPC.
-- Oklahoma has failed to cover the number in three straight games. Riley’s bunch beat Kansas by a 55-40 count last week but never threatened to cover the spread as a 35-point home favorite. Murray threw for 272 yards and two TDs with one interception. Brooks ran for 171 yards and two TDs on 25 attempts, while Murray turned eight rushed into 99 yards and three TDs. Brown had six receptions for 55 yards.
-- Sermon left the KU game with a sprained ankle that has him listed as ‘questionable’ at WVU.
-- OU has been dreadful on defense all season. Mike Stoops, the brother of former head coach Bob Stoops, was fired several weeks ago. Out of 130 FBS teams, the Sooners are ranked 87th in the nation in total defense, No. 106 in pass defense, 64th at defending the run and 86th in scoring ‘D’ (30.7 PPG).
-- Oklahoma is tops in the country in total offense and scoring with its 49.5 points-per-game average. The Sooners are seventh in rushing yards and 11th in passing.
-- OU is playing just its fourth road game of the year. The Sooners are 3-0 SU and 1-2 ATS in their three road assignments. As road favorites during Lincoln Riley’s two-year stretch as head coach, they own a 2-4 spread record.
-- West Virginia (8-2 SU, 6-3-1 ATS) is undefeated in five home games with a 4-1 spread record. The Mountaineers are 4-6 ATS in 10 games as home underdogs during Dana Holgorsen’s eight-year tenure. This is their first home ‘dog spot since dropping a 50-39 decision to Oklahoma State last season.
-- WVU is in bounce-back mode after losing 45-41 at Oklahoma State as a six-point road ‘chalk’ last week. OSU’s Taylor Cornelius found Tylan Wallace for an 11-yard scoring strike to put the Cowboys up 45-41 with 42 ticks remaining. With two timeouts left, WVU had time to rally back. However, Holgorsen went completely ‘Mad Hatter’ with his clock management and made two baffling mistakes in not using a timeout. The drive started with a three-yard run by Grier, who got out of bounds at WVU’s 28 to stop the clock with 37 seconds left. Grier then hit Gary Jennings Jr. for an 11-yard gain that temporarily stopped the clock for the first-down markers to be moved. This is when ‘Holgo’ should’ve used his first timeout. Instead, by the time Grier hooked up with Jennings again for a 33-yard reception, there were only 11 ticks remaining. Jennings didn’t get out of bounds, but the clock stopped momentarily for the chains to be moved. At this point with two timeouts left, you obviously and belatedly burn one, right? Nope, not if you’re ‘Holgo.’ He allowed several seconds to drip away yet again and when Grier hit David Sills V for a 14-yard gain to the OSU 14, there was only two seconds remaining. Finally, ‘Holgo’ used a timeout. Had he used one after either of the completions to Jennings, there would’ve been more than 10 seconds – perhaps even 14-15 – remaining instead of merely two. Grier’s pass to Sills in the end zone fell incomplete to end the game. Again, if ‘Holgo’ would’ve simply utilized one morsel of common sense and used a timeout when he was supposed to, Grier would’ve had at least one – maybe two – shots at the end zone.
-- Grier completed 27-of-48 passes for 364 yards and two TDs without an interception at OSU. Kennedy McKoy ran for 148 yards and two TDs on 21 carries, while Grier also had a TD run. Jennings caught seven balls for 92 yards and one TD, and Sills had four receptions for 68 yards and one TD.
-- Grier has connected on 67.2 percent of his throws for 3,325 yards with a 33/8 TD-INT ratio. Sills has 53 receptions for 765 yards and 13 TDs, while Jennings has caught 47 balls for 692 yards and 11 TDs. Marcus Simms has 44 catches for 682 yards and two TDs. McKoy has run for a team-best 648 yards and six TDs, averaging 5.8 YPC. Martell Pettaway has 486 rushing yards, four TDs and a 6.2 YPC average.
-- Behind Tagovailoa and Murray, Grier has the third-shortest odds (10/1) to win the Heisman.
-- This is the highest total both teams have seen this season. Not only that, but it’s the highest tally in all of college football this year.
-- The ‘over’ has been an enormous money maker in OU games this year, cashing at a 10-1 overall clip. The ‘over’ is 3-0 for the Sooners on the road. Their games have averaged combined scores of 80.3 PPG.
-- OU’s last three games have netted combined scores of 95, 97 and 95. In five of the Sooners’ past seven games, they’ve had combined scores of at least 93 points.
-- The ‘over’ has hit in four consecutive WVU games to improve to 6-4 overall and 3-2 in its home outings. The Mountaineers’ highest previous totals were 73.5 and 73 points and the ‘over’ cashed in both instances. Their games have averaged combined scores of 64.2 PPG.
-- Kickoff from Morgantown is scheduled for Friday night at 8:00 p.m. Eastern on ESPN.
Washington at Washington State
-- As of Thursday night, most books had Washington State (10-1 SU, 10-1 ATS) listed as a 2.5-point favorite with a total of 49. The Huskies were +125 on the money line (risk $100 to win $125).
-- Mike Leach’s team is undefeated in six home games with a 5-1 spread record.
-- Gardner Minshew, the grad transfer QB from East Carolina, has enjoyed a helluva season. Minshew has completed 70.4 percent of his passes for 4,325 yards with a 36/7 TD-INT ratio. He has 92 rushing yards and three TDs.
-- Minshew has eight players who have caught 26 balls or more led by Dezmon Patmon, who has 54 catches for 735 yards and four TDs. Tay Marting has 62 receptions for 637 yards and eight, while Easop Winston has caught 47 balls for 600 yards and eight TDs.
-- Washington State RB James Williams has run for 487 yards and 10 TDs with a 4.5 YPC average. Williams has 69 receptions for 530 yards and four TDs.
-- Washington State is No. 14 in the nation in total offense, No. 1 in passing yards and 12th in scoring with its 40.5 PPG average.
-- Washington (8-3 SU, 2-9 ATS) is 2-2 SU and 1-3 ATS in four road assignments.
-- Chris Petersen’s team was – at least to me – considered a national-title contender coming into the 2018 campaign. But three trips into the red zone in the second half of the opener in Atlanta vs. Auburn produced merely three points, resulting in a 21-16 loss to the Tigers. UW responded with a five-game winning streak but with star RB Myles Gaskin injured, it lost 30-27 at Oregon in overtime. Then on Oct. 27, the Huskies went to Berkeley and lost a 12-10 decision.
-- UW is mired in a 0-6 ATS slump.
-- Gaskin is Washington’s all-time leading rusher, but he’s rushed for a career-low 906 yards and seven TDs with a 4.9 YPC average. The senior RB has missed two games due to injury. Gaskin also has 15 catches for 72 yards and one TD.
-- Washington senior QB Jake Browning is the school’s leader in career passing yards. He has connected on 64.5 percent of his throws for 2,485 yards with a 16/8 TD-INT ratio this year. Browning has four rushing scores this year and 16 career rushing TDs.
-- Browning’s favorite targets are Aaron Fuller and Ty Jones, who has 27 receptions for 457 yards and six TDs. Fuller has 49 catches for 754 yards and four TDs.
-- Washington has been a road underdog seven times during Petersen’s five-year tenure, producing a 4-3 spread record. If you count the game against Auburn in Atlanta as a road game, then that record is 4-4. If you don’t count that game, then this is UW first road ‘dogs spot since 2015.
-- Washington has dominated the Apple Cup rivalry in recent years, winning five games in a row over the Cougars. The Huskies have covered the spread in four straight encounters, including last year’s 41-14 win as a 9.5-point home favorite. The 55 combined points went ‘over’ the 50-point total. The ‘over’ is 2-0-1 in the last three meetings. Gaskin gashed WSU for 192 rushing yards and four TDs on 25 carries.
-- Washington is ranked 11th in the nation in scoring defense, limiting opponents to an average of 16.6 PPG. The Huskies are 16th in the country in total defense, 22nd in run defense and 28th at defending the pass.
-- The ‘over’ is 7-4 overall for the Cougars, 3-3 in their home games. They’ve seen their games average combined scores of 63.1 PPG.
-- The ‘under’ is 8-3 overall for the Huskies, 4-1 in their five road assignments. Their games have averaged combined scores of 44.6 PPG.
-- FOX will provide television coverage at 8:30 p.m. Eastern.
B.E.’s Bonus Nuggets**
-- As of Thursday, most spots had Appalachian State installed as a 10.5-point home favorite for Saturday’s showdown vs. Troy that’ll decide the Sun Belt’s East Division. During Neal Brown’s four-year tenure, the Trojans are 9-1 ATS in 10 games as a road underdog. They’ve been double-digit underdogs nine times, compiling an 8-1 spread record with three outright victories.
-- Florida, a six or 6.5-point favorite at FSU as of Thursday, is favored over the Seminoles for the first time since 2009. The Gators are ‘chalk’ in Tallahassee at Doak Campbell Stadium for the first time since 2008. UF safety Brad Stewart is listed as 'questionable’ with a quad injury.
-- Michigan DE Chase Winovich is ‘questionable’ at Ohio State due to an injury. Winovich has recorded 58 tackles, four sacks, 9.5 tackles for loss, seven QB hurries and one pass broken up.
Follow Brian Edwards' sports gambling opinions on Twitter at @vegasbedwards.