This article is part of our College Football Picks series.
College Football Picks: Oklahoma State vs. Texas Best Bets
Get in on the college football action for 2023 with ESPN BET promo code ROTO featuring a $250 bonus bet offer! RotoWire has plenty of college football betting tools and info to keep you in the loop this season. From the latest college football odds to college football futures and Heisman odds, we have you covered.
The Texas Longhorns face the Oklahoma State Cowboys, which will determine the winner of the Big 12 and will perhaps place one of the teams into the College Football Playoff. With a win, Texas could sneak into the playoff, but the Longhorns will need some help. The Cowboys are trying to play spoiler and win what would be a very unexpected conference title.
Oklahoma State vs. Texas Betting Odds for Championship Week
Spread: Texas -14.5 (FanDuel Sportsbook), Oklahoma State +15.5 (BetMGM)
Total: Over 54.5 (FanDuel Sportsbook) Under 55.5 (BetMGM)
Moneyline: -675 Texas (DraftKings Sportsbook); +500 Oklahoma State (FanDuel Sportsbook)
Jump in on the 2023 college football season with a BetMGM bonus code sporting a $1,500 bonus bet offer.
Oklahoma State vs. Texas Betting Picks for Championship Week
As mentioned earlier, Texas still has an outside chance to make the College Football Playoff, but in order to do so, the Longhorns will need help from Louisville for sure, and maybe Michigan and Georgia as well. Even if everything goes right, the Longhorns could still be on the outside looking in as Ohio State could still spoil things for Texas. It's Ohio State that will provide extra motivation here, however, as if FSU loses, and Georgia, the Oregon/Washington winner and Michigan are in, Texas will need to leapfrog Ohio State. The committee played this perfectly because they gave themselves room to jump Texas over OSU with a quality win, but they also left open a scenario in which they could keep OSU in front of Texas if this is a sloppy or unimpressive victory. Texas' job this weekend is to win and win convincingly.
All of the above is not to say that Texas will have more motivation than Oklahoma State, however, as a Big 12 championship is plenty of motivation for a team that wasn't expected to be here. Motivation will be equal, but only Texas is concerned about style points.
Now that we've got the intangibles out of the way, what do the numbers tell us? Well, the numbers tell us why Texas is favored by two touchdowns. To put it bluntly, OSU was not very impressive this season. The Cowboys did have a signature win against Oklahoma, but the next week they were blown out at UCF. They also lost at home to South Alabama and on the road at Iowa State.
The problem for OSU is the defense, the Cowboys rank 113th against the run and 104th against the pass. They've allowed 30+ points in five of their past seven games and in each of their past three games against the likes of UCF, Houston and BYU. That's a problem, especially against a Texas team that can move the ball on anyone.
Texas has been pretty impressive this season, but the Longhorns have flaws as well. Texas picked up a huge nonconference win against Alabama, and it's that win that gives them a chance at the playoff, for without it, I doubt that any team from a down Big 12 would have a shot. Texas' lone loss came against Oklahoma, but the Longhorns had a couple close calls as well against KSU and TCU. In other words, this team hasn't steamrolled everyone on the schedule this season.
Texas is well-balanced on offense, but its defense has some holes, especially when they're defending the pass. The Longhorns ranked 96th against the pass this season, and if OSU is to have a chance in this game, the Cowboys will have to exploit that weakness.
One other thing to note about Texas is that its starting QB, Quinn Ewers, was out for a few games this season, and while the Longhorns managed to survive the time he was out, I think they lost some rhythm. They seem to have found that rhythm this past week, though, as they thumped Texas Tech 57-7. If the defense plays like that, it's lights out for OSU this week.
I'm not sure we can expect another defensive effort like that, however, and while I think Texas wins this game comfortably, I'm not sure I want to give up more than two touchdowns, so I'm going to side with the over as my best play in this game.
Oklahoma State vs. Texas Expert Pick: Over 54.5 (FanDuel Sportsbook)
Snare a piece of the action during the 2023 college football season with a FanDuel Sportsbook promo code for $150 on a $5 moneyline bet if your team wins!
Oklahoma State vs. Texas Predictions for Championship Week
There's no reason to think that OSU will be able to slow down Texas' offense, so I'm expecting a quick start from the Longhorns. As for the Cowboys, I think they'll be able to counter-punch early in this game, so there should be a lot of points scored in the first half. OSU is going to make a couple mistakes along the way, however, that will open the door for Texas to get some separation, which starts to happen before the half and continues into the second half. A backdoor cover is possible, however, as OSU isn't going to go away quietly in such a big spot. The ability for Texas to cover might come down to whether the Longhorns stay aggressive for the entire game.