Kansas State vs. Kansas Betting Odds & Pick: Jayhawks Remain Underdog As Spread Moves (Saturday, Oct. 24)
Peter Aiken/Getty Images. Pictured: Keenan Garber.
Kansas State vs. Kansas Odds
|Kansas State Odds||-18.5 [BET NOW]|
|Kansas Odds||+18.5 [BET NOW]|
|Moneyline||-1500/+790 [BET NOW]|
|Over/Under||46.5 [BET NOW]|
|Time||Saturday, 12 p.m. ET|
There is no such thing as a look-ahead game when facing an in-state rival — especially when one team has won the last 11 meetings by an average margin of 25.8 points.
Why, then, are the Kansas Jayhawks catching less than three touchdowns this week in the Little Apple? The boys from Manhattan, Kan. are 3-0 SU and ATS since their opening day upset loss to Arkansas State. Keep in mind they played without 35-40 players that day, due to COVID-related issues.
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Kansas State Wildcats
Unfortunately for the Wildcats, Senior dual-threat QB Skylar Thompson was lost for the season with a right arm injury in the second game of the campaign. The task of leading Chris Kleiman’s offense now falls to a freshman from Downingtown, PA named Will Howard.
Howard has not been overly accurate (50% completion percentage), but his penchant for big plays is shown both in his 9.8 yards per pass attempt and his 80-yard quarterback draw in the first drive of the game against TCU. Howard has also protected the football, which is always a staple of Kleiman teams. He has only turned the ball over once this season.
Big plays could come in bunches for Kansas State on Saturday. Freshman RB Deuce Vaughn has 517 yards from scrimmage and four TDs in his first 4 college games and is starting to make the Purple Cat faithful believe they’re watching the next Darren Sproles. You’ll get no disagreement from the folks in Oklahoma, who Vaughn torched for 164 total yards in only 12 touches.
The Wildcats have been giving up their share of yards (454.8/game) and yards per play (5.8) in a season that started against some high-powered offenses (Arkansas State, Oklahoma, and Texas Tech). However, they have been an opportunistic bunch with eight forced turnovers and a blocked punt or kick in every game this season. They are also 19th in FBS in red-zone percentage against.
If things hold to form, look for the YPP against to greatly decrease, while the defensive and special teams splash plays remain constant.
It doesn’t get much worse offensively than averaging the second-worst yards per play (3.6) in all of FBS, does it? Unfortunately, if you’re the 2020 Kansas Jayhawks, it actually does.
The Jayhawks only real offensive weapon, junior RB Pooka Williams, opted out of the season on Monday, citing the need to be with his mother in Louisiana as she deals with health issues.
As with all the Jayhawks, WIlliams couldn’t get much going this year. However, he ran for over 1,000 yards in each of the previous two seasons while averaging 5.95 yards per carry. Williams will also be missed as a special teams kick returner; anyone with a West Virginia or an under ticket last week remembers Pooka’s kickoff return TD with under 2 minutes remaining.
There really aren’t many signs of hope for this team. After being named the starter, QB Miles Kendrick averaged 4.13 yards per pass attempt last week while throwing 2 passes to the guys in different colored uniforms. This earned him a QBR of 11.9.
On the other side of the ball, the young Jayhawks defense is allowing 42.5 points per game. Not wanting to be left out, the kick coverage unit has also yielded two scores. The lone bright spot seems to be OC Api Mane, who actually handled all-everything DT Darius Stills last week.
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Betting Analysis & Pick
Kansas is a team that can’t get out of its own way. The Jayhawks simply don’t move the football and they lost their only weapon. They are going to need help from the opposition in order to get things going.
Unfortunately for them, the Purple Cats have turned the ball over only once in four contests, all the while taking the ball away eight times. They make the short trip to Manhattan finding a well-coached, motivated Kansas State team enjoying a talent mismatch. That’s not a recipe for success.
This game opened at 17.5 and I still see value where it stands now at 19.5. I would play it now, though. I see the line climbing over three touchdowns on gameday. When lines start climbing 4 and 5 points it’s often time to pass.
The Bet: Kansas State -19.5 (Up to -21)