Iowa State Cyclones vs. Oklahoma Sooners
Date and Time: Saturday, October 7, 2017, 12 p.m. ET
Location: Memorial Stadium, Norman, OK
Opening College Football Odds: Oklahoma -26.5
Iowa State vs. Oklahoma TV Coverage: FOX Sports 1
The Cyclones are clearly heading in the right direction at this point. We think they'll ultimately make it to a bowl game this year after starting at 2-2, and after this game against Oklahoma, things are going to open up for them when they'll be favored against Kansas and have a fighting chance at Texas Tech.
Still, they didn't look good in a 17-7 loss against Texas on Thursday night last week. It was a standalone game on the college football sportsbook schedule, thus drawing a lot of attention to it. The appearance was a bad one in every facet of the game, as the team just flat out looked sloppy and unlikely to challenge the best of the best in the Big XII.
However, let's not forget that this is a team that ranks No. 28 in the nation in rush defense and a respectable No. 59 in scoring defense through the first month of the campaign.
Oklahoma is expected to make short work of the Cyclones, especially after the ridiculous start they've had to their season. They were off last week, but their offense has been outstanding all season long and isn't easy to forget.
OU's offense ranks No. 1 in America in total yards at 605.5 per game, including ranking No. 4 in passing offense and No. 4 in scoring average.
Baker Mayfield is going to get a lot of credit for averaging 13.2 yards per pass attempt this year, but let's not forget that Abdul Adams, Trey Sermon and Marcelias Sutton are averaging 10.3, 6.6 and 5.9 yards per carry respectively.
9 – The number of times David Montgomery carried the ball last week for Iowa State against Texas.
Montgomery is Iowa State's best player. He was averaging 5.7 yards per carry coming into the game and was used as a true workhorse for the Cyclones. That said, he only had six rushes in the first half when the game was competitive and three in the second half when the hosts were trailing the whole way and tried to open things up a little bit.
The Cyclones, who averaged 152 rushing yards per game in their first three games of the season, finished with a total of just 10 rushing yards (net of sacks) against Texas. Clearly, Montgomery is going to have to be a superstar in this game if the Cyclones want to have any serious chance of challenging one of the better teams in America.
Iowa State vs. Oklahoma Free Picks
It's just natural to think react to what we have seen most recently. The Cyclones looked like a wreck against Texas, and most now assume that they're going to look the same against Oklahoma.
But we're not all that sure. The Sooners were sleepwalking against Baylor two weeks ago when we last saw them, and this is a lot of points for them to be laying, especially against a team that is going to end up being at least middle-of-the-road in the Big XII this year. These conference games tend to be weird, and this might end up being another strange result.
If the Cyclones can figure out how to make this a game into the third quarter or so, they should figure out how to stay in front of this number, even if Oklahoma does start to run out late on after wearing its foes down.
College Football ATS Pick: Iowa State +26.5 at BookMaker.eu
College Football Score Prediction: Oklahoma 40, Iowa State 21