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Oklahoma Sooners Odds of Making the College Football Playoff in 2021

By Dan Vasta in College Football
| August 26, 2021 10:09 am PDT

The Oklahoma Sooners are one of the three most prestigious, successful programs in college football history. They are up there with Alabama and Ohio State, but something shiny is missing from the trophy case.

Oklahoma has yet to win the College Football Playoff, and they haven’t even won a game in the national semifinals yet. Their average margin of defeat is at a staggering 18 points per game.

Lincoln Riley has brought the offensive fireworks to Norman, but the hope is their defense can put them among the nation’s elite this season.

It is time to discuss whether or not the Oklahoma Sooners are a good bet to win the College 2021 Football Playoff.

Oklahoma CFP Odds for 2021

We have seen value across many sportsbooks, but Bovada and BetUs bring the most favorable odds for the Sooners. In terms of chances to win it all, MyBookie remains bold on Oklahoma placing their odds at 5/1.

The Sooners are in the top three in both preseason polls, so there are lofty expectations. Spencer Rattler is the Heisman favorite entering the season, and Oklahoma looks poised to have their best season yet under Lincoln Riley.

They are sizable favorites to win every scheduled game.

Texas may need some time to turn into a juggernaut under Steve Sarkisian, and the Sooners get to host both TCU and Iowa State. There is a strong possibility that Oklahoma will play the Cyclones two times like last season.

The question remains whether or not this season is finally the year the Sooners get back to the promised land. Are they a great bet to win it all?

Why Oklahoma Will Win It All

The Sooners have appeared in four of the seven College Football Playoff postseasons thus far. Judging by past history, the Sooners are at least among the best bets to reach the 2021 College Football Playoff.

Entering year number eight, folks from Norman are hopeful they can finally get over the hump.

The preseason AP All-American and Heisman darling, Spencer Rattler will have a bevy of weapons at his disposal. Marvin Mims, Theo Wease, Jadon Haselwood, Austin Stogner, Michael Woods, and Drake Stoops are among the best receiving units in the nation.

There aren’t many weaknesses on Oklahoma’s offensive squad, and they can strike at any play.

Kennedy Brooks, Marcus Major, and Eric Gray are a trio of backs that will find success running behind one of the premier offensive lines in the country.

The lack of playoff experience for the young pieces would be the only blemish on their records thus far. If they continue to light up the Big 12 scoreboards, their confidence and skills will push them over the hump this season.

Survival of the Fittest

College football is chaotic every season due to the unexpected often happening. There are upsets galore, and there haven’t been too many sure things.

The premier programs have appeared in the CFP, but new teams could arrive in the playoff.

Oklahoma could benefit from this if any of the favored juggernauts (Alabama, Clemson, Georgia, Ohio State) fail to appear in the playoff. Many of these teams could go undefeated on paper entering the season, but we know the favorites won’t always win.

Oklahoma could be the only unbeaten team this season.

Many argue there is more likely to be one or two unbeaten teams versus four-plus among the power fives. Appearing in the Cotton Bowl in nearby Arlington would be another benefit for the Sooners.

Injuries and breaks along the way are overdue to happen in favor of Oklahoma. The schedule also offers plenty of games to catch their breath. You won’t find them in the 20 toughest college football schedules for 2021.

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Why the Sooners Won’t Win It All

The Sooners are attempting to win their first national title since the 2000-01 season that featured Josh Heupel under center. Heupel is now the head coach for Tennessee, and times have certainly changed.

Bob Stoops is retired, and Lincoln Riley is now in charge of the program. He has done a fine job thus far, but their struggles in December and January have some fans anxious.

Here are the top reasons why the Sooners will once again come up short.

Lack of Competition in the Big 12

TCU and Baylor were both left out in the first CFP back in 2014, and the conference hasn’t fared well in the national spotlight since.

The non-conference schedules haven’t been up to par, and the Sooners have a cupcake schedule compared to most teams. That includes nine conference games, though only a few could be ranked.

Oklahoma could be a disappointing Iowa State season away from potentially having zero impressive wins on the slate.

Oklahoma was able to split non-conference victories over Ohio State years ago during the Baker Mayfield era, but the team hasn’t always been allowed to pull off signature wins.

Texas has gone 48-39 since Mack Brown left the program after the 2013 season. They are now on their third head coach, and the Longhorns have been one of the more inconsistent teams in the entire country.

If the Sooners want to take the nation by storm and earn more national respect, they will have to dominate every weekend and not count on any other team in the Big 12 helping.

If they were to lose a conference game, that could end up costing them another shot at the CFP.

TCU and Iowa State shouldn’t have to carry the flag as the biggest challengers to Oklahoma in the conference, but here we are. Both programs have been one of the few relevant defenses to contend with Oklahoma, but no other team besides the Sooners has even appeared in the playoff.

The ACC had Florida State before Clemson began to dominate, and even the Big Ten had somebody besides Ohio State appear in the playoff (Michigan State).

The SEC has had multiple teams make the playoff in one season, but LSU and Georgia have all been national threats by either appearing in the title game or winning it going away.

CFP Trends and Struggles

The Sooners are 0-4 in the CFP. Their average margin of defeat is at 18 points a game. Other than their narrow loss in the Rose Bowl to Georgia, we have not seen them compete at the highest levels when it matters most.

Look at these losses the Sooners have suffered. Where is the defense?

  • 63-28 loss to LSU (2019-20)
  • 45-34 loss to Oklahoma (2018-19)
  • 54-48 loss to Georgia (2018-19)
  • 37-17 loss to Clemson (2017-18)

LSU with Joe Burrow and Alabama with Tua Tagovailoa hung 108 points on Oklahoma’s defense in the 2018-19 CFP semifinal matchups.

Those were embarrassments to the program, and they haven’t won a game in the playoff still. OU hasn’t even made it back since, so everything isn’t peaches and cream for the mighty Sooners.

Oklahoma has had its biggest concerns against the best in the nation.

Ohio State was able to get over their struggles against Clemson last year, so when will Oklahoma get over theirs?

The Sooners have lost their last three bowls against Clemson, two of which happened the past decade. Oklahoma had lost three consecutive bowls against the SEC. Luckily, the drought ended after their beatdown over Florida in the Cotton Bowl last season.

All their Heisman winners and video game numbers are cute in the regular season, but they need to put it together in the spotlight.

Are the Sooners a Good Bet in 2021-22?

Oklahoma could be atop the polls the entire season if Alabama were to somehow loose in the early against Miami, Florida, or Texas A&M. If not, the Sooners will stay in the top four as they will likely dominate the majority of the Big 12 competition.

Depending on where you bet on sports online, Oklahoma is among the top three to five favorites to win it all.

They have their best defense in the Riley era, which should get them to the playoff and perhaps to the national title.

If they were to reach the title game, points need to be flowing. Sam Bradford and the Sooners should have won it all in 2008, but the offense sputtered with turnovers against the Florida Gators.

Winning it all may come down to the play and heroics of Rattler. He is the preseason Heisman favorite, and he will need to shine in the biggest of games. He has enough athleticism to buy time in the pocket, but all the pieces are in place for their first national title in over 20 years.

I love the value depending on your market, especially the ones that have Oklahoma at 7/1 odds.

We have consistently seen teams in sports get over the hump if they continue to battle and challenge at the top of the mountain. Oklahoma has been a dominant program that has been as successful as anybody after Alabama and Clemson.

Keep in mind the odds will shorten up on Oklahoma when other teams suffer losses (see Clemson vs. Georgia in Week 1). Don’t sit around and wait. Oklahoma is one of your best bets this season to win it all.

Be sure to check out these other college football articles for more insight into the upcoming season.

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