College Football Odds, Picks, Predictions for Texas Tech vs. Oklahoma: Why to Back Caleb Williams, Sooners in Week 9
William Purnell/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: Kennedy Brooks.
Texas Tech vs. Oklahoma Odds
|Texas Tech Odds|
-115o / -105u
-115o / -105u
Ever since freshman Caleb Williams took the reins at Oklahoma after Spencer Rattler’s disappointing, he’s received plenty of hype for a comeback in the Heisman Trophy race.
We saw those dreams get shot up in flames last week, as the Sooners entered the fourth quarter trailing Kansas.
Oklahoma eventually won, 35-23, but you couldn’t help but scratch your head wondering what was going on while watching that game. It was a glimmer of hope for all college fans who root for maximum chaos while going into the playoff. Hand up, I am one of those people.
While Oklahoma is clinging on to playoff hopes, Texas Tech has its eyes set on a prize a little lower: a bowl bid.
While the Red Raiders sit at 5-3, they will have to earn that last win as they go against ranked opponents in Oklahoma, Iowa State, Oklahoma State, and Baylor to finish the season. And they have to do that without their head coach, as Matt Wells was fired earlier this week.
Will Williams have a bounce-back game as the spread implies? Or will Texas Tech clinch a bowl bid while also ruining any chance for Oklahoma to make the playoff?
Let’s find out.
Texas Tech Offense
If the Red River Showdown — or whatever it’s called nowadays — showed us anything, it’s that Oklahoma is susceptible to being burnt downfield.
Texas Tech’s defense will not be able to consistently slow down the high-powered Sooner offense, so the Red Raider offense will have to match whatever Oklahoma puts up.
Luckily for Texas Tech, it’s more than capable of doing that. It currently owns a big play rating of 15th, one of the best in the nation. This is in large part due to quarterback Henry Colombi, who has thrown for 1,214 yards, four touchdowns, and four interceptions since taking over the starting position.
Colombi is not a threat to run it on the ground, and instead will focus on the deep ball in this matchup. He will have plenty of opportunities to burn the Sooners, as the Red Raiders boast a Pass Success rating of 28th.
But the offensive line needs to give him time, as the Sooners are lethal at getting to the quarterback.
Texas Tech Defense
Texas Tech’s defense is in for a long night. On top of not being all that good, it goes against Williams and Co., which is one of the best offensive units in the nation.
The Red Raiders rank worse than Oklahoma in every metric, and it’s not even close.
One of their biggest weaknesses is their Def. Finishing Drives ranking of 127th. Texas Tech will have to do everything it can to put Oklahoma deep in its own territory position and pray it doesn’t get past the other 40.
As if that isn’t bad enough, the Red Raiders are also one of the worst tackling units in all of college football. With a ranking of 104th in PFF Tackling, they will find it tough to stop Oklahoma in its tracks, as the Sooners love to get their talented playmakers in the open field.
Williams put his name on the map when he came in for a struggling Rattler in the rivalry game against Texas. The kid is legit and has a very bright future. He has shown he can continue to lead this high-powered offense that can beat the best of them.
He will have nothing to fear in this bounce-back game, as Texas Tech has a very poor defense. With offensive ranks of 13th in Pass Success and eighth in big -lay, we may see video game-type numbers out of Williams by the time this one is over.
Running back Kennedy Brooks will also look to have a big game, exploiting Texas Tech’s Def. Rush Success ranking of 106th. If he can find the open hole, the Red Raiders could be in trouble.
Simply put, the Sooners will have no problem moving the ball down the field. The real question is, how fast and efficiently will they do it? If they can get in good field position, points will come automatically any time they pass the 40.
Recency bias has the whole nation believing that the Oklahoma defense is, and always will be, a paper tissue. While it was secretly one of the better units by the end of the 2020 season, it’s regressed back to being poor as of late.
While the Sooners have taken a step back, they still excel at some areas on the defensive end. The defensive line is not to be trifled with. Not only do they get a push on the line with a Def. Line Yards ranking of ninth, but they also get to the quarterback at a ranking of sixth. They’re a well-oiled machine there.
They will need to rely on their defensive line to continue to get pressure in the backfield to avoid their weak secondary from getting beat deep.
Oklahoma currently owns ranks of 80th in Def. Pass Success, 91st in big play, and 84th in Havoc.
Texas Tech vs. Oklahoma Matchup Analysis
Toggle the dropdowns below to hide or show how Texas Tech and Oklahoma match up statistically:
Texas Tech Offense vs. Oklahoma Defense
|** Pass Blocking (Off.) vs. Pass Rush (Def.)|
Oklahoma Offense vs. Texas Tech Defense
|** Pass Blocking (Off.) vs. Pass Rush (Def.)|
Pace of Play / Other
|SP+ Special Teams||19||4|
|Plays per Minute||65||86|
|Rush Rate||53.4% (75)||51.8% (84)|
Data via College Football Data, FootballOutsiders, SP+, PFF and SportSource Analytics.
Texas Tech vs. Oklahoma Betting Pick
I never enjoy taking heavy favorites, but this one just makes too much sense.
This is shaping up to be a bounce-back game for the Sooners, as they played their worst three quarters of football in last week’s match-up against Kansas.
Williams will look to show why this is his team again and have the performance of a lifetime.
The Texas Tech defense is very poor in nearly every metric, giving Oklahoma the ability to move the ball with ease. There will be no shortage of big plays on that side of the ball. The Red Raiders are one of the worst tackling units, which is a major concern as Oklahoma relies on getting its playmakers in space.
While Oklahoma’s defense is very suspect, it does have one ace up its sleeve: the ability to get to the backfield. If Oklahoma can constantly bring the pressure and keep Colombi in check, then that will give the Sooners’ secondary a much-needed breather.
I played Oklahoma -19 for a half unit and would play this no higher than -20.5. I will also be looking to add some live hedge pieces on Texas Tech if this gets out of hand early.
Pick: Oklahoma -19
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