This Saturday evening (6:45pm ET) the Valero Alamo Bowl from the Alamodome in San Antonio, TX features the 23rd ranked Texas Longhorns (8-4) of the Big 12 and the 13th ranked Oregon State Beavers (9-3) out of the PAC-12. Texas is 5-7 ATS this season, and the Longhorns are 9-4 in bowl games under Head Coach Mack Brown. OSU is 8-4 ATS this season, and are heading to their first bowl game since 2009, when they lost to BYU in the Las Vegas Bowl. The Beavers posted a six win improvement from last season, tied for the largest improvement among FBS teams.
The Texas offense ranks 24th in the nation in scoring offense with an average of 36.1 points per game and 37th in the nation in total offense with 441 yards per game. Quarterback David Ash (2,458 yards passing, 17 TDs, 7 INTs) missed the Longhorns last game against Kansas St. on December 1st with rib injury, but is expected to start this game. The Texas defense ranks 74th in the nation in points allowed with an average of 29.4 per game, and 77th among FBS teams in total defense with 412.2 YPG allowed.
OSU has averaged 33 points per game to rank 37th among FBS teams in scoring offense and the Beavers rank 34th in the nation in total offense with 442.7 YPG. Quarterbacks Sean Mannion (2,446 yards passing, 15 TDs, 13 INTs), a sophomore who led the team to a 4-0 start, and junior Cody Vaz (1,286 yards passing, 11 TDs, 1 INT) ) both saw action in the final game of the season, a 77-3 blowout over Nicholls State, and will likley see action in this game. The Beavers’ defense ranks 22nd among FBS teams in points allowed with 19.8 per game and 31st in total defense with 353.7 YPG allowed. OSU has intercepted 19 passes this season, tied for the 6th best total in the country, and they have forced 30 turnovers overall to rank in a tie for 12th nationally.
Texas vs. Oregon State Spread, Line and Betting Odds:
Texas Longhorns +2
@ Oregon State Beavers -2
Over 57.5 (-110)
Under 57.5 (-110)
Betting odds taken from Bovada.lv
Texas vs. Oregon State Pick:
Texas has a 4-1 record ATS in their last 5 non-conference games, a 4-1 record ATS in their last 5 games against PAC-12 teams and a 2-6 record ATS in their last 8 games overall. The Beavers are 6-2-1 ATS in their last 9 games against teams with a winning record, 4-1 ATS in their last 5 neutral site games and 9-4-1 ATS in their last 14 games overall. The under is 4-1 in Texas’ last 5 games overall and 5-2 in their last 7 non-conference games, the over is 4-1 in their last 5 games against PAC-12 teams. The over is 4-0 in OSU’s last 4 games overall, 6-2 in their last 8 non-conference games and 5-0 in their last 5 games against teams with a winning record.
Both teams have made quarterback changes this season, with Texas alternating between Ah and Case McCoy, and OSU playing both Mannion and Vaz extensively this season. Expect all 4 QBs to see action, and with two prolific offenses there could be a lot of scoring in the controlled environment of the Alamodome. The over is not the best play to make here however, as this could be a one-sided game if OSU is able to force turnovers the way they have in the regular season. With a strong defense predicated on taking away the ball, Oregon State has a decided advantage in this game despite what will likely be a pro-Longhorn crowd in San Antonio. Expect Oregon State to win this game with much more ease than the line would indicate. Take Oregon State to cover here.
PICK = Oregon State -2