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Oklahoma State vs. Iowa State College Football Odds, Picks: Cowboys on Upset Alert on Saturday? (Oct. 23)

Oklahoma State vs. Iowa State College Football Odds, Picks: Cowboys on Upset Alert on Saturday? (Oct. 23) article feature image

Chris Unger/Getty Images. Pictured: Breece Hall.

  • The surprising Oklahoma State Cowboys are ranked in the Associated Press Top 10 and control their own destiny in the Big 12.
  • On Saturday, Oct. 23, Oklahoma State faces one of its biggest tests of the season: The Iowa State Cyclones, led by QB Brock Purdy and RB Breece Hall.
  • Check out our college football betting preview for Oklahoma State vs. Iowa State, including updated odds, picks and predictions for Saturday afternoon's game.

Oklahoma State vs. Iowa State Odds

Saturday, Oct. 23
3:30 p.m. ET
Oklahoma State Odds
Spread Total Moneyline
-110o / -110u
Iowa State Odds
Spread Total Moneyline
-110o / -110u
Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute college football odds here.

Oklahoma State looks to keep its perfect record alive on Saturday when it travels to Ames to take on Iowa State.

Oklahoma State passed its first big test of the season, beating Texas on the road in Austin 32-24. Mike Gundy has potentially the best defense in the Big 12, but it’s going to be tough on the road going up against Brock Purdy and Breece Hall.

Iowa State’s preseason dreams of the College Football Playoff are done after losing to Iowa and Baylor. However, Iowa State has rebounded, beating both Kansas and Kansas State in its last two games.

This is the Cyclones’ biggest test in the month of October, so it will be interesting to see which Iowa State team we see on Saturday.

Oklahoma State Cowboys

Oklahoma State Offense

The Cowboys’ offense was really inefficient to start the game against Texas last weekend, as their first five drives resulted in only three points. The main reason for that is because there have been some issues for Spencer Sanders and the Oklahoma State passing attack.

From a Success Rate standpoint, the Cowboys are pretty average, ranking 55th in the country. They are explosive though, ranking 29th in passing explosiveness. They have one of the best receivers in the Big 12 in Tay Martin.

The biggest problem for Oklahoma State this season is even though it ran the ball with some success against the Longhorns on Saturday, it hasn’t been efficient in total for the season.

The Cowboys are only gaining 3.8 yards per carry and rank outside the top 80 in Rushing Success Rate, offensive Line Yards and EPA/rush.

Iowa State is only allowing 3.0 yards per carry, so it’s going to be much more difficult for Oklahoma State to run the ball than last weekend against Texas, which is one of the worst run defenses in the Big 12.

Oklahoma State Defense

Gundy has an unbelievable defense this season. They held Texas’ extremely potent offense to just six yards in the final 15 minutes of their game.

That wasn’t a big-time shock considering the Cowboys are top 30 in both Success Rate Allowed and Big Plays Allowed and are only allowing 4.7 yards per play this season.

The strength of the defense is their front seven, as the Cowboys are only allowing 3.0 yards per carry and are graded as the No. 6 run defense in college football, per PFF.

However, they did let Bijan Robinson average 6.4 yards per carry and 135 yards against them last weekend and now will be going up against another outstanding running back in Hall.

The secondary has been very solid this season as they are allowing only 6.9 yards per attempt, have an 88.6 coverage grade, per PFF and are 16th in EPA/Pass allowed.

Iowa State Cyclones

Iowa State Offense

The Cyclones’ offense hasn’t really been what we expected at the beginning of the season.

However, Purdy has actually put up better numbers than he did in 2020. He’s averaging 8.5 yards per attempt — compared to 7.5 last season — and his passing grade is 86.9 this season, when it was 74.2 a season ago, per PFF.

The Cyclones’ passing attack is 13th EPA/Pass attempt, so it’s not a given that Oklahoma State’s secondary will shut down Purdy like it did Casey Thompson last weekend.

Brock Purdy owns three of ISU's top 10 single-game completion pct. marks (min. 20 attempts – this season.

2. Kansas State (88.0%, 22-25)
3. UNLV (87.5%, 21-24)
10. UNI (80.7%, 21-26)

He ranks 3rd nationally in completion pct. (73.9%).


— Cyclone Football (@CycloneFB) October 17, 2021

The main reason for that is because Purdy has not been asked to throw the ball as much as he did last year.

The Cyclones are running the ball on 62.3% of their offensive plays with Hall having — yet again — another fantastic season.

The Cyclones are also top 40 in offensive Line Yards, rushing explosiveness, and EPA/rush, so the rushing attack is legit and should be able to be efficient on Saturday.

Iowa State Defense

While the Cyclones’ defense hasn’t been one of the elite units in the Big 12, they’ve still been very good this season. Iowa State is only allowing 4.2 yards per play and ranks 32nd in EPA/Play allowed.

While they don’t have one clear strength, they’ve been solid upfront and in the secondary. The Cyclones are top 50 in both Passing and Rushing Success Rate Allowed, top 40 in both EPA/Rush and EPA/Pass allowed and are 41st in big plays allowed.

The biggest reason why they’ve been so efficient is they are incredible at keeping opponents out of the endzone once they cross the 40-yard line. Iowa State is 10th in Finishing Drives, so it’s going to be really difficult for an Oklahoma State offense that is really poor from a Success Rate standpoint.

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Oklahoma State vs. Iowa State Matchup Analysis

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

Oklahoma State Offense vs. Iowa State Defense
Rush Success 94 48
Line Yards 120 44
Pass Success 55 49
Pass Blocking** 45 32
Big Play 34 41
Havoc 111 60
Finishing Drives 78 41
** Pass Blocking (Off.) vs. Pass Rush (Def.)

Iowa State Offense vs. Oklahoma State Defense
Rush Success 57 39
Line Yards 36 30
Pass Success 45 30
Pass Blocking** 53 63
Big Play 20 22
Havoc 30 26
Finishing Drives 45 10
** Pass Blocking (Off.) vs. Pass Rush (Def.)

Pace of Play / Other
PFF Tackling 103 13
Coverage 15 40
Middle 8 70 9
SP+ Special Teams 75 58
Plays per Minute 51 108
Rush Rate 62.3% (22) 52.8% (74)

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

Oklahoma State vs. Iowa State Betting Pick

Iowa State opened as a -5.5 favorite but has been bet up to -7 at most books, as most of the money and sharp action is on the Cyclones.

I do think Iowa State’s offense will be able to move the ball on Oklahoma State given the efficiency from both Purdy and the rushing attack, while Oklahoma State’s offense is due to regress given how poor it’s been from an EPA/Play and Success Rate standpoint.

I have the Cyclones projected as a -11.17 favorite and Collin Wilson’s PRO Projections has Iowa State at -8.8, so I think there is some value on the Cyclones at -7 (DraftKings) or better.

Pick: Iowa State -7

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