Baylor vs. Oklahoma State: Betting Odds, Picks, and Predictions (12/4/21)

Oklahoma State vs. Baylor Betting Odds

The 2021 Big 12 championship is not what we usually expect out of the conference.

Instead of Oklahoma, West Virginia, or Texas playing for this title, Oklahoma State and Baylor are. Moreover, college playoff implications are still on the line.

But parity is always good for college football, and this game will be no less entertaining than previous years.

Oklahoma State has an exciting quarterback with a stout defense, and Baylor features one of the strongest ground games in college football.

But which team will come out on top?

Oklahoma State Cowboys Odds

Oklahoma State has had a phenomenal season. One of the best in recent history.

The Pokes defense is the catalyst of that success. This is a unit that ranks among the top 10 in:

  • Rush Success Rate
  • Pass Success Rate
  • Big Play Prevention
  • Havoc
  • Finishing Drives
  • Line Yards
  • PFF’s Coverage grades

As a result, it’s by far the best scoring defense in the Big 12, allowing a measly 16.4 points per game.

One of the best things the Cowboys do is dominate early in drives. The Pokes lead the nation in three-and-outs, often killing opponents’ will and leaving their defenses exhausted.

Offensively, it’s rather ugly. Behind an offensive line that ranks 110th in Line Yards, the Cowboys rank among the bottom 10 teams in Rush Success Rate. While they are rushing for almost 200 yards per game, it’s been for less than 4.5 yards per carry.

Spencer Sanders has carried them for stretches. His ability to create with his legs (510 rush yards) and throw in-between the hashes has kept the Cowboys in games.

Additionally, the offensive line has kept him clean. The Cowboys rank 24th in Pass Blocking, which has prevented sacks from killing drives.

Baylor Bears Odds

The Bears can flat-out run the football.

Baylor is fifth in Rush Success Rate this season, rushing for over 225 yards per game at over 5.5 yards per carry. The combination of Abram Smith and Tresten Ebner has dominated, combining for over 2200 yards this season.

However, Smith has been the clear lead back. He’s averaging 6.4 yards per carry and is PFF’s 33rd highest graded back.

But Smith and Ebner have the offensive line to thank. Baylor’s line ranks 21st in Line Yards this season and grade out as PFF’s 13th best run-blocking team.

The offensive line has also protected quarterback Gerry Bohanon, ranking top 10 in Pass Blocking. Bohanon has done well with his attempts, posting a 17:6 touchdown-to-interception ratio and throwing for almost nine adjusted yards per attempt.

However, Bohanon can’t carry his team to victories, leading an offense that ranks just 68th in Pass Success Rate. The Bears would do well to avoid getting behind the sticks.

Defensively, the Bears are middling. Baylor can stop the run, but it struggles with the pass. It ranks outside the top 50 in defensive Pass Success Rate and Pass Rush, and the Bears rank 69th in PFF’s tackling grades.

Prediction and Pick 

My pick: Under 46.5 (-110 at BetMGM)

It’s simple.

Oklahoma State is a dominant defense, specifically in the rush game. The Bears rely on running the football, and it will see trouble with this Cowboy front.

Meanwhile, the Bears are solid against the rush, but the Cowboys can’t rush the football anyway. While Baylor is middling against the pass, Sanders isn’t going to light up the scoreboard through the air.

These two teams match up well with each other, and points should be at a premium as a result. The total has taken some sharp money, as less than 40% of the bets are on the under while over 55% of the handle is.

I’ll follow the smart money and take the under.

Tanner joined Lineups to cover everything, but he has vast experience in, and unlimited passion for, Major League Baseball and NCAA Basketball. He’s a McGill University grad and former (Canadian) Division-I alpine ski racer who now spends his time drinking beer and betting home underdogs. Patrick Mahomes is a poor man’s Tom Brady.

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