Insight Bowl: Iowa Hawkeyes vs Oklahoma Sooners Pick
Iowa Hawkeyes vs. Oklahoma Sooners Gambling Odds from JustBet
NCAA FB Betting Favorite: Oklahoma -13.5
The Oklahoma Sooners were ranked number one in the preseason polls, so a berth to the Insight Bowl wasn’t exactly what they had in mind for this year. Oklahoma lost three of their last six games, and finished the year as one of the most disappointing teams in the nation. Iowa expected to have a bit of a rebuilding year. Kirk Ferentz’s team lost some games they had no business losing, but they also picked up some very good wins. The Sooners are big favorites in this one, but anything can happen in bowl season.
Landry Jones actually took a bit of a step backward this year. Jones racked up 38 touchdown passes last year, but he finished with just 28 this year. His completion percentage dropped from 66% down to 63%. It hurt the team a ton when star receiver Ryan Broyles went down with a season-ending injury in November. Jaz Reynolds is also expected to miss this game, so the Sooners will be a bit thin at the wide receiver spot. Leading rusher Dominique Whaley will miss the game with an ankle injury. Roy Finch is averaging 5.7 yards per carry, and he should do a solid job filling in for Whaley. Oklahoma averages 40.2 points per game this year.
The Sooners defense looked great part of the season, but they also were picked apart some of the time this year. This unit finished 61st in the nation in total defense, and they were particularly weak against the pass. Oklahoma’s secondary allowed 244 passing yards per contest in 2011. The defense allowed 41 points or more in each of the team’s three losses this year.
Iowa was a hard team to figure out this year. This is a squad that lost to lowly Minnesota, but managed to beat Michigan. James Vandenburg did a great job at quarterback for the Hawkeyes this year. He threw 23 touchdowns while being intercepted just six times all season. Iowa has some serious problems at the running back spot, where their top two rushers are both suspended for this game. Can an unknown running back pick up big yardage behind Iowa’s successful offensive line? It will be the final game of Marvin McNutt’s career as a Hawkeye. McNutt has had a wildly successful senior campaign. McNutt racked up 1,269 receiving yards and 12 touchdowns this year.
The Hawkeyes defense was a bit disappointing this year. The secondary was a veteran group that appeared ready for a great year, but it just didn’t happen. Iowa finished right in the middle of the pack in the country in total defense. Micah Hyde led the team with three interceptions. This unit was mediocre at everything this year, which just isn’t good enough for a team that prides itself on physicality and a strong defense.
Iowa is 4-0 ATS in their last 4 bowl games. I think Ferentz will have his team ready to play here. Look for a closer than expected game.
Free College Football Pick: Iowa +13.5