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Baylor vs. Oklahoma State College Football Odds & Picks: How to Bet Big 12 Championship (Dec. 4)

Baylor vs. Oklahoma State College Football Odds & Picks: How to Bet Big 12 Championship (Dec. 4) article feature image
Credit:

John E. Moore III/Getty Images. Pictured: Tay Martin.

  • Oklahoma State and Baylor meet in Arlington on Saturday for the Big 12 Championship.
  • Updated odds have the Cowboys at -6.5 ahead of the conference title game.
  • Check out Collin Wilson's top two bets for the matchup below.

Baylor vs. Oklahoma State Odds

Saturday, Dec. 4
12 p.m. ET
ABC
Baylor Odds
Spread Total Moneyline
+6.5
-110
45.5
-110o / -110u
+195
Oklahoma State Odds
Spread Total Moneyline
-6.5
-110
45.5
-110o / -110u
-240
Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute college football odds here.

The Big 12 Championship game will be a historic event from many angles.

For the first time since 1998, the conference title finale will not include Oklahoma or Texas. The last time the Sooners or Longhorns did not compete in the championship game, St. Louis served as the host city with the game taking place in the Trans World Dome.

The landscape has certainly changed, as both Oklahoma and Texas will be leaving the conference for the SEC, signaling a new era in Big 12 football.

Nothing welcomes a new era better than Oklahoma State competing in its first-ever Big 12 Conference Championship game.

The Pokes previously won the Big 12 in 2011 when no conference championship game existed, but Baylor has been to Arlington in recent history. The Bears lost the 2019 championship game to Oklahoma, representing the team’s only conference championship appearance.

Art Briles brought a co-championship without a conference title game in 2014, making this the biggest game in Big 12 history for the Bears.

These two teams met in Week 5, a 10-point victory for the Pokes in Stillwater. Baylor never held a lead in the game even with both teams having a matching number in overall yards per play.

Baylor struggled in passing downs and scoring opportunities, one of the biggest areas of focus for this championship game.


Baylor Bears

After a two-win season in 2020, head coach Dave Aranda knew changes were needed on the offensive side of the ball.

Offensive coordinator Jeff Grimes was plucked from Provo after a successful run at BYU. Fast forward to the present, and Grimes is tasked with taking on Oklahoma State defensive coordinator Jim Knowles, a fellow Broyles Award finalist.

The Baylor offense rotates between 11 and 12 formations with a heavy tendency for running the ball in a two-tight end set.

The first order of business is assessing the health of quarterback Gerry Bohanon.

Dave Aranda was asked about how Blake Shapen played today in his first collegiate start, and his answer was TREMENDOUS. pic.twitter.com/A8KTIgjkpj

— Eric Kelly (@EricKellyTV) November 28, 2021

The high-level stats show two touchdowns and no interceptions for Blake Shapen against Texas Tech, but he committed three turnover-worthy plays in Waco.

Knowles will prepare the Cowboys defense against an offensive set, as Gundy stated that Bohanon and Shapen run a similar scheme.

Baylor did not have a stellar offensive outing in Stillwater earlier this season, failing to post a methodical drive and achieving two first downs on just two of its 13 offensive possessions. However, the Baylor defense did force three turnovers despite losing.

The Bears’ 3-3-5 scheme that goes multiple into a 2-4-5 in passing downs continues to be a trademark for Aranda after successful seasons as LSU’s defensive coordinator.

A 30% blitz rate comes on first and second downs and rarely on third down, signifying Oklahoma State must have its best offensive day as it owns a Standard Downs Success Rate ranking of 65th.

Spencer Sanders’ worst day under center for Oklahoma State came against Baylor, as he tossed three interceptions despite being sacked just once in the game.

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Oklahoma State Cowboys

The strength of the Cowboys continues to be a defense that leads the nation in three-and-outs and hard stops.

The Sooners posted just one explosive drive and one methodical drive in 15 offensive possessions against the Cowboys defense. The Pokes generated seven quarterback hurries and six sacks on quarterback Caleb Williams, elevating this defense to an elite level.

Knowles will keep a spy on the quarterback position against Baylor, as Bohanon had nine rushing attempts for just 13 yards in the Oct. 2 game.

The defensive line will once against harass a Bears offensive line that ranks 84th in Passing Downs Sack Rate.

The running game continues to be an issue for the Pokes, ranking 104th in Offensive Rushing Success Rate. Oklahoma State was stuffed on 13-of-35 rushing attempts against Oklahoma, well above the national average.

The Cowboys are bottom-15 in rush explosiveness, leaving this game up to the arm and footwork of Sanders.

The quarterback posted a Success Rate 21% higher than the national average in passing downs against the Sooners with an average yards-per-play mark of 9.7.

If the offensive line continues a top-25 rank in pass protection, Sanders will have time to hit Tay Martin or take off for scramble yards.

I'm not sure who loves to hit a defender more — Jaylen Warren or Spencer Sanders. pic.twitter.com/WJ00zcKMEe

— Tyler Wiederhoeft (@TDWiederhoeft) November 28, 2021

 

The handicap against Oklahoma is that no individual player ranked within the top 200 in coverage grading. While Baylor does not have a cornerback who ranks in the top 200, per PFF, both Christian Morgan and Jairon McVea are top-70 safeties for the Bears.

Throwing in between the hashes has not been a strong area for Sanders, completing just a single pass beyond 20 yards this season. Look for Oklahoma State to post methodical drives by avoiding Baylor’s safeties.


Baylor vs. Oklahoma State Matchup Analysis

Toggle the dropdowns below to hide or show how Baylor and Oklahoma State match up statistically:

Baylor Offense vs. Oklahoma State Defense
Offense
Defense
Edge
Rush Success 5 3
Line Yards 21 4
Pass Success 68 12
Pass Blocking** 3 35
Big Play 19 4
Havoc 62 3
Finishing Drives 40 8
** Pass Blocking (Off.) vs. Pass Rush (Def.)

Oklahoma State Offense vs. Baylor Defense
Offense
Defense
Edge
Rush Success 104 14
Line Yards 110 32
Pass Success 54 56
Pass Blocking** 24 58
Big Play 61 57
Havoc 52 15
Finishing Drives 56 30
** Pass Blocking (Off.) vs. Pass Rush (Def.)

Pace of Play / Other
PFF Tackling 83 57
Coverage 69 5
Middle 8 76 21
SP+ Special Teams 38 47
Plays per Minute 101 42
Rush Rate 60.8% (24) 60.5% (27)

Data via College Football Data, FootballOutsiders, SP+, PFF and SportSource Analytics.


Baylor vs. Oklahoma State Betting Pick

The potential loss of Bohanon at quarterback for the championship game is reflected in the market.

The Action Network projects Oklahoma State at -4, as anyone who wants to back the Cowboys will pay a tax for the public appetite on Oklahoma State and the potential of a backup quarterback for Baylor.

Although there is value in the number for Baylor, the Cowboys field the better defense.

The bigger question is whether or not Sanders can avoid mistakes against Aranda’s defense, as the Oklahoma State quarterback has thrown five interceptions in his past two games against Baylor.

Scoring has been on the decline for Baylor over the last half of the season, taking a loss to TCU and averaging just 25.5 points per game through November.

Because Oklahoma State has the second-best defense in the nation behind Georgia, Baylor will fall behind schedule in offensive possessions. The Bears are 116th in passing downs explosiveness with a rank of just 40th in Offensive Finishing Drives.

Without a healthy hamstring for Bohanon, scoring could be sparse for the Bears.

Pick: 1H Under 23.5 or Better · Baylor +5.5 or Better

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