Big XII Championship Game Free Pick: Oklahoma Sooners vs. Nebraska Cornhuskers
(10-2, 7-5 ATS)
(10-2, 5-6-1 ATS)
At the outset of the season, many college football betting fans believed that this would be the Big XII Championship Game, and the winner would be on their way to Glendale for the BCS Championship Game. That’s not quite how the plot played out this year, as the prize for the winner of this duel between the Nebraska Cornhuskers and Oklahoma Sooners is a trip to the Fiesta Bowl.
The Sooners have had a great offense all season long, but this isn’t the side of the ball that is concerning to HC Bob Stoops. The defense has allowed a whopping 370.6 yards and 22.1 points per game, numbers that absolutely are not acceptable by Oklahoma’s standards. It’s a good thing that the ‘O’ found a way to score at least 45 points in each of its last three games, huh? This is one of the few teams in college football that has a 3,000+ yard passer, a 1,000+ yard rusher, and a 1,000+ yard receiver on it. The quarterback, QB Landry Jones, might be playing for his spot as a Heisman Trophy finalist on Saturday. There isn’t a way that he finds himself as the winner of the most illustrious individual award in collegiate sports, but being a finalist as a sophomore is a great honor. Jones has thrown for 3,947 yards and 34 scores against ten picks this year. The back is RB DeMarco Murray who, up until a few weeks ago, was also a Heisman Trophy contender. Murray has nothing to be ashamed of this year, as he has rushed for 1,053 yards, received for 535 yards, and picked up 249 yards in kick returns as well, totaling 19 TDs. WR Ryan Broyles might be the best at his trade in the land, as he has 115 catches for 1,391 yards and has visited the end zone 13 times.
Nebraska has a lot of issues to work out in its final Big XII game before heading to the Big Ten. Both QB Zac Lee and QB Taylor Martinez are dealing with injuries, and mum is the word out of Lincoln right now as to whether either one or both will be playing on Saturday night. Martinez has been the starter for most of the year, and he has been fantastic for a true freshman, throwing for 1,435 yards and rushing for 974 yards. Lee has only thrown 20 passes all season after being the quarterback last year, while QB Cody Green has thrown for 295 yards and three scores. On the ground, Martinez, RB Roy Helu, and RB Rex Burkhead have the ability to become the second trio of rushers in the history of college football to rush for 1,000 yards in the same season. Helu is already there, having rumbled for 1,120 yards and ten scores, while Burkhead has 822 yards and seven scores. Defensively, the Black Shirts are going to need to be at their best. They are averaging allowing just 281.6 yards and 16.8 points per game this year.
As long as the quarterback play doesn’t let up this week, the Huskers are a nice looking underdog to back. They have a great chance at winning this one outright, and they can take the Big XII title with them to the Big Ten in a final coup in a conference that they dominated for years and years.
College Football Expert Pick: Nebraska Cornhuskers +5
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