Week 7 - Oklahoma State at Kansas

Posted Oct 11, 2012

Week 7 Fearless Predictions - Oklahoma State at Kansas

Oklahoma State (2-2) at Kansas (1-4) Oct. 13, 3:30, FOX Sports Net

Here's The Deal: Losers of 25 of its last 26 Big 12 games, Kansas has been everyone's conference layup over for the last few years, but Oklahoma State has had its way in the series for a lot longer winning eight of the last nine games going back to 1995. Unless something crazy happens, the ugliness will continue.

The Jayhawks hung around with Kansas State for a half last week, and then reality set in on the way to a 56-16 Wildcat win for the fourth straight loss and the 14th loss in a row to FBS team. The offense hasn't been able to kick in like some had hoped for, and while the defense hasn't been awful, it hasn't been a positive. Head coach Charlie Weis needs plenty of time and a few recruiting cycles to try to clean things up, but in the meantime, coming up with better play on the lines and more offensive pop will be a must against the high-powered Cowboys.

Kansas has yet to score more than 24 points against an FBS team, while Oklahoma State has yet to score fewer than 36. With two weeks off to lick their wounds after the controversial loss to Texas, the Cowboys should come back rested and ready for what appears to be an easy stretch with home games against Iowa State and TCU up next, and with four of the next five games in Stillwater. But first comes the date in KU to rev up the machine again.

Why Oklahoma State Might Win: The only way to possibly slow down the Oklahoma State offense is to get to it before it starts by getting pressure on the quarterback and getting to the running backs before they get any room to move. Kansas can't do either one. Last in the Big 12 in sacks and tackles for loss, and with just one sack over the last three games, the Jayhawk defensive front isn't able to get into the backfield. Cowboy quarterbacks get the ball out of their hands in a hurry, but it also helps to have a line that has allowed just two sacks all year while paving the way for a ground game that's averaging 300 yards per game. The KU offense averages just 374 yards per outing.

Why Kansas Might Win: Unlike last season when the Cowboys almost never made any major mistakes, this year they're turning the ball over way too often giving it up eight times in four games while only coming up with two takeaways in the last two games. Kansas might not be great in terms of turnover margin, but it's better than OSU and has to come up with at least a +3 and capitalize on every one. KU can't hang with the Cowboys punch for punch and need lots and lots of breaks. Hanging on to the ball as much as possible is also vital to keep Oklahoma State's offense on the field, and even though keeping it for almost 37 minutes last week didn't matter, KU probably can't win unless it controls the clock.

What To Watch Out For: The Oklahoma State quarterback situation is still a bit up in the air. Wes Lunt is still not quite ready with a knee injury, although he's reportedly getting close, but J.W. Walsh has been more than just a good fill in, throwing for 301 yards and two scores with 57 rushing yards against Texas after bombing away for 347 yards and four touchdown passes, and tearing off 73 rushing yards and a score, against Louisiana-Lafayette. Even though Walsh is second in the nation in passing efficiency, he's not quite the passer that Lunt is, but he's a better runner.

What Will Happen: Oklahoma State will fire at will. Like the Kansas State game, Kansas will hang around for a little while, and then the floodgates will open and things will get ugly, fast.

CFN Prediction: Oklahoma State 52 … Kansas 23
ATS Consultants Line (Click for more lines and picks) Oklahoma State -27 O/U: 74
Must Watch Rating (5 – Argo, 1 – Pitch Perfect): 2