Big 12 Football-Week 5 Handicapping Guide
The Big 12 continues to be one of the more successful major conferences this season along with the SEC with six of its10 teams currently ranked in the AP’s latest Top-25 poll. Kansas State vaulted to No.7 after beating Oklahoma, which is now No. 16. West Virginia is next at No.9 with Texas still holding down the No.12 spot. TCU jumped up two spots to No.15 and Baylor worked its way into the polls at No.25. The following is a look at a couple of the top matchups this week in the Big 12 along with the opening spreads as provided by 5Dimes.
No.25 Baylor Bears vs. No.9 West Virginia Mountaineers (-13)
Baylor is off to a stronger than expected 3-0 straight-up start but it is 1-2 against the spread after failing to cover as a favorite against both Sam Houston State and Louisiana-Monroe in its last two games. The Bears are averaging 51.3 points a game so it is little wonder that the total has gone OVER in their two games with posted lines.
West Virginia is also 3-0 SU and 1-2 ATS after failing to cover the last two weeks against James Madison and Maryland. The Mountaineers are averaging 47.3 points a game and ready to open their first ever Big 12 Conference schedule against a team that is almost their mirror image on both sides of the ball.
This should be a wide-open aerial assault for the ages between two teams that are ranked in the top five in the nation in passing yards per game. Neither team has bothered to play too tight on defense with Baylor giving-up 29.7 points a game and the Mountaineers giving-up 22.3 points. These kinds of numbers are sure to produce a very high total line for this game, but that does not mean you should back away from a play on the OVER in the first meeting in recent memory between these two teams.
No.15 TCU Horned Frogs vs. SMU Mustangs (-18)
TCU will play its final non-conference game of the regular season this Saturday after posting a 3-0 SU (2-1 ATS) in its first three games this year. The Horned Frogs won their first Big 12 game as a member of the conference in Week 3 with a 20-6 victory over Kansas as 18.5-point favorites on the road.
The Mustangs, out of Conference-USA West, come into this contest at 1-2 both SU and ATS following previous losses to Baylor and Texas A&M. They have really struggled on defense and are currently ranked 105th in the country in points allowed while averaging just 26.3 points a game on offense.
These two teams are very familiar with one and other meeting every season for the last 11 years except in 2006. SMU actually pulled-off a huge six-point upset in overtime last season as a 13-point road underdog. The Mustangs are 2-8 SU in the last 10 meetings but a profitable 7-3 ATS. The total has gone OVER in two of the last three meetings.
No.12 Texas Longhorns (-2.5) vs. Oklahoma State Cowboys
Texas is off to a solid 3-0 SU (2-1 ATS) after winning its first three games by a combined score of 148-48. The Longhorns have accomplished this with not only a strong defense but a balanced offense that is averaging 255.7 yards a game in the air and 258.7 yards a game on the ground.
The Cowboys have been all over the board so far in their 2-1 SU (1-1 ATS) start. They ran up 84 points in a shutout of Savannah State and lost to Arizona 59-38 in Week 2 as 10-point favorites on the road. The total has gone OVER in their last two games with the total set at 70 points or higher.
Over the last 10 years, Texas ran off eight-straight victories before losing the last two years. The series is actually split an even 5-5 ATS with the Cowboys holding a 3-1 edge ATS in the last four meetings. The road team is 6-4 SU and 7-3 ATS with the total going 5-4-1 in the 10 games.
DJ is a freelance writer that concentrates on his true passion in life; the world of sports. He produces a number of articles each week for BangTheBook.com as well as a select group of other websites that specialize in providing the most up-to-date information for the sports gaming industry. His goal is to write insightful articles on a wide variety of sporting topics that can provide an edge to today's sophisticated online player.