Oklahoma Sooners vs. Iowa State Cyclones Preview – College Football, December 19, 2020
Iowa State is going to have their hands full during Saturday’s Big 12 Championship game at Jerry’s World. The Cyclones narrowly beat the Sooners back on October 3rd in Ames, but that was at home versus an unsettled Spencer Rattler.
This weekend’s title game takes place on a neutral field, and the OU QB is in a much better place having a chunk of games under his belt.
Starting with the odds, here’s a Big 12 Championship preview. An Oklahoma vs. Iowa State prediction can be found at the bottom of the page.
Oklahoma vs. Iowa State Odds
Lincoln Riley and his crew have reeled off six straight wins – all in convincing fashion. Then again, Matt Campbell and his bunch have emerged in five straight contests and have looked sharp in the process as well. After going into Austin and knocking off the Longhorns, the Cyclones hung 42 on West Virginia’s Big 12-leading defense.
The Sooners are 6-3 against the spread after a 13-point victory over Baylor last time out snapped their streak of covering at five games. Iowa State is 6-4 ATS having been on the “right side” on their bet in three straight matchups.
Making A Case For the Sooners
The Sooners have owned the Big 12 Championship game at AT&T Stadium. The Dallas Cowboys home field has hosted the Big 12 title game in each of the last three years (no Big 12 Championship game from 2011-2016), and Oklahoma has come out on top on all three occasions.
All of the starting and stopping in 2020 has prevented Spencer Rattler from establishing an optimal routine, but there’s no denying he’s one of the most electric quarterbacks in the country. When the pocket collapses and Rattler is under duress, he’s actually been the best.
Passer rating under pressure— PFF College (@PFF_College) December 11, 2020
1 – Spencer Rattler: 119.8
2 – Kyle Trask: 118.9
3 – Sam Howell: 117.3
4 – Mac Jones: 107.7 pic.twitter.com/AqXjcUi44W
While it’s easy to rave about Coach Riley’s offense, it’s the defense in Norman that has my attention when making an Oklahoma vs. Iowa State prediction. The Sooners D has allowed a total of 36 points across their past three games thanks to being especially good in their front seven.
Isaiah Thomas is a candidate to win Big 12 DPOY while Nick Bonitto has racked up 6.5 sacks in his last five games. Bonitto hasn’t dressed since November 21st but the feisty linebacker is hoping to be cleared in time to make the trip to Arlington.
Making A Case For the Cyclones
Will the stage be too bright in what is the first appearance in a Big 12 Championship game in program history? Probably not, given how balanced the Cyclones football team is.
Brock Purdy hasn’t thrown an interception in his last three games and has done an excellent job spreading the pigskin around. Xavier Hutchinson is a big-time target who has evolved into a #1 threat, although eight Cyclones pass-catchers have hauled in double-digit passes.
Of course, we can’t talk about Matt Campbell’s squad without praising the best running back in college football.
Welcome to the Heisman House poll, DeVonta Smith!— ESPN (@espn) December 9, 2020
Are you picking him or one of the star QBs for CFB's top award?
Breece Hall has been a one-man wrecking crew for the Cyclones in 2020 and the scary part is he’s just a sophomore. As many playmakers as the Sooners have on defense, trying to contain Hall on Saturday will be their toughest assignment yet.
Remember, Breece shredded OU to the tune of 139 yards and two touchdowns in the first meeting.
Oklahoma vs. Iowa State Pick
Despite appearing as an evenly-matched game on paper, the Sooners have a substantial edge where it matters most – under center. The dynamic abilities of Spencer Rattler – combined with Lincoln Riley’s pedigree coaching in this game – are steering me toward the favorites in an Oklahoma vs. Iowa State pick.
With the Big 12 Championship odds pushing 5.5/6 points at the top betting sites, I suggest heading over to BetNow if you plan on backing the Sooners.