Two of the top offensive units in the country meet this Saturday evening (7:00pm ET) in Morgantown, WV when the 3rd ranked Kansas State Wildcats (6-0) travel to face their new Big 12 rivals the 15th ranked West Virginia Mountaineers (5-1). Kansas St. is 4-1-1 ATS this season, pushing as a 6 point favorite in a 27-21 win at Iowa St. last week after covering their two previous wins, a 56-16 demolition of Kansas to cover a 2.5 point spread, and a 24-19 win at Oklahoma as a 15.5 point underdog in their Big-12 opener. West Virginia is 2-4 ATS this season, losing big at Texas Tech last week as a 3 point favorite in a 49-14 rout for the Red Raiders, after outgunning Texas in Austin the previous week 48-45 as a 7.5 point underdog.
The Wildcats are one of the most prolific offensive units in the country under the direction of their blossoming star quarterback Collin Klein (1,074 yards passing, 7 TDs, 510 yards rushing 10 TDs) a true dual threat under center. K-State ranks 15th among FBS teams in scoring offense with 40.8 points per game and 47th in total offense with 427.5 yards per contest. The Wildcats’ defense has been superb as well, ranking 19th in scoring defense (16.5 PPG) and 33rd in total defense (339.7 YPG) among FBS teams.
West Virginia has been one of the most exciting teams in the country this season on both sides of the ball, with the exception of last week’s meltdown at Texas Tech. QB Geno Smith (2,271 yards passing, 25 TDs) has shredded opposing defenses to the tune of 45.7 PPG (7th among FBS teams) and 543.7 YPG (7th among FBS teams). The Mountaineers defense has forced West Virginia to outscore their opponents on a weekly basis, as they rank a dismal 112th in scoring defense with 37.3 PPG allowed and 117t in total defense with 496 YPG allowed.
Kansas State vs. West Virginia Spread, Line and Betting Odds:
Kansas State Wildcats +2.5
@ West Virginia Mountaineers -2.5
Over 72 (-110)
Under 72 (-110)
Betting odds taken from Bovada.lv
Kansas State vs. West Virginia Pick:
Kansas State has a 6-1-1 record ATS in their last 8 road games, a 5-1-1 record ATS in their last 7 October games and a 19-6-1 record ATS in their last 26 conference games. West Virginia is 1-4 ATS in their last 5 home games, 104 ATS in their last 5 games against winning teams and 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games overall. The over is 19-8 in the Wildcats’ last 27 games overall and 9-4 in their last 13 games against winning teams. The over is 5-2 in West Virginia’s last 7 conference games, 8-3 in their last 11 games against winning teams and 7-2 in their last 9 games at home. The two teams have no recent meetings as West Virginia is new to the Big-12 this season.
These two teams are both among the highest scoring teams in the country, but with very different styles of play from their quarterbacks. K-State is much more of a run-oriented team, ranking 11th nationally in rushing offense with 248.5 YPG. Look for them to open things up more against the horrific mountaineer secondary and score early and often. Kansas State has been effective defensively this season, but their Achilles heel has been their pass defense which ranks 76th in the nation with 238.3 YPG allowed through the air. That does not bode well when going on the road to try and stop one of the most prolific passing offenses in the nation. This should be a track meet on both sides, and Kansas State would be a solid pick as an underdog against an erratic West Virginia team, but with the Mountaineers penchant for shootouts the over is the play to make here.
PICK = Over 72