NCAA Football Predictions - Oklahoma Sooners vs West Virginia Mountaineers

Oklahoma Sooners

Wednesday, November 16, 2016 3:25 PM GMT

A huge battle in the Big 12 finds the Oklahoma Sooners favored on the NCAA football odds on the road up in Morgantown against the West Virginia Mountaineers.

Season: 23-20-3 (+1.70)

One way or another, the winner of Saturday's prime-time battle between the Oklahoma Sooners and West Virginia Mountaineers is going to present the College Football Playoff committee with a dilemma.

Milan Puskar Stadium is the site for the top 10 tussle, Oklahoma No. 8 in both conventional polls while West Virginia checks in No. 10/9, respectively, according to the writers and coaches. Kickoff comes a little after 8 PM (ET) on ABC, the Sooners handed a -2½ spread after opening half a tick higher at Bookmaker. The opening 67 point total dropped by a half.

The mess that is the Big 12 race begins with OU on top with an unblemished 7-0 record followed by Oklahoma State (6-1) and West Virginia (5-1). A Sooners win give them at least a share of the conference crown with the Bedlam showdown vs. Oklahoma State two weeks from now. A West Virginia victory would leave the Mountaineers 9-1 overall with a trip to Iowa State trailed by a home date with a sinking Baylor.

 

Can Big 12 Still Get Into CFP?

Oklahoma (8-2 straight up, 4-6 against the spread) entered 2016 with playoff aspirations as the No. 3 team in the preseason poll, but those hopes seemed to go out the window with early losses to Houston and Ohio State. The Sooners would drop their first three games against the NCAA football odds before taking a week off to regroup and subsequently storm through the conference slate (4-3 ATS). Playoff hopes have been revived, but Bob Stoops and OU will need a little help above them to get there.

They will be playing a little thin on the defensive line where a pair of cogs may not make the trip; Charles Walker is doubtful due to a concussion while Matt Dimon is nursing an Achilles injury.

West Virginia (8-1 SU, 4-4-1 ATS) will need more than a little help to reach the CFP, possibly needing as many as five teams ahead of the Mountaineers to lose despite the potential to go 11-1 with the only loss at Oklahoma State. Dana Holgorsen's group can score with the selection committee by taking down Oklahoma this week, but there won't be many style points awarded now for closing out with victories at Iowa State and back home against Baylor.

 'Under' The Way To Play In Conference Clashes

Saturday marks the ninth meeting between the Sooners and Mountaineers, and fifth as conference rivals. Oklahoma stands 6-2 overall thanks to winning all four Big 12 clashes. West Virginia's last win in the series came in the 2008 Fiesta Bowl, a 48-28 upset as 8 point underdogs. Last year's matchup in Norman was played much earlier on the schedule and resulted a 20-point victory for the Sooners who were giving up 6½. Three of the four Big 12 collisions have gone 'over' the totals, the teams splitting the covers.

The weatherman says bring your slicker suit and/or umbrella for this one with a call for an 80% chance of rain during the day that could turn to snow after the game gets underway. Look for temps in the low-40s at kickoff and dropping into the low 30s, a 15-18 mph SW breeze added to the mix just to make things more miserable.

This is the first time in 2016 the Mountaineers aren't favored, tempting me to take them at home; instead, my free college football pick will be on the 'under.'

Free College Football Pick: Under 66½ Best Line Offered: at Bookmaker

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