Dean's Blog: OU-Baylor Big 12 Title Game Predictions
Monday, December 2nd 2019, 5:52 PM CST
- I’m picking OU to beat Baylor 34-31 in Saturday’s Big 12 Championship Game. But we don’t buy the opening point spread making the Sooners a 9.5-point favorite. It has immediately been bet down by people taking the Bears and thus the spread has gone down to around 8 the last few hours.
- Looking for Baylor to have a ‘homefield advantage’ inside Jerry World, but not significant. But it shouldn’t be a factor after seeing Oklahoma dominate the second half in Waco.
- Anyone wanting to debate whether the Alex Grinch hiring as OU’s defensive coordinator has proven to be anything less than a triple needs to find someone else to debate.
- I’m less comfortable about OU’s chances to beat Baylor a second time to win the league than most any of the other 10 title games they’ve played. Lots of respect for the Bears, their momentum and their coaches. Take note of their tackling in this game. OU should win if they can match what Baylor has consistently displayed.
- We’re putting OU’s odd of another playoff invite at a little over fifty percent if they beat Baylor in what would be a fifth straight league title. But all bets are off if OU squeaks and plays so-so in a win over Baylor and Utah blows out Oregon. Of course case is closed if Georgia upsets LSU in SEC Title Game – which we deem unlikely.
- The optimist says the Sooners are headed to be competitive in its third straight playoff appearance – fourth in five seasons. He – or she – says OU will finish off a promising recruiting season in strong fashion; enhanced slightly by the Texas Turmoil and the mounting losses in College Station.
- The pessimist says that it’s a toss-up for OU to beat Baylor … and that another playoff appearance will end in a third straight double-digit loss.
- Oklahoma is not only an astonishing 9-1 in Big 12 Championship games, but unless my math is wrong, they’ve won those nine title games by a whopping 18.8 PPG.
- It speaks to Lincoln Riley’s offensive brilliance that in his Air Raid offense, Jalen Hurts will break OU’s single-season rushing record by a QB if he runs for 73 yards vs Baylor.
- Hurts is most comparable to former Sooner JC Watts when comparing former OU QBs. Gifted as run/pass guys, bigger than most, definitive team leaders -- both popular and respected.
- Parnell Motley’s turnaround is remarkable. But in a league with a bevy of quality corners Motley may not be first-team all-conference.
- Seems to me nickel back Bookie Radley-Hiles is playing exponentially better than last year in his true frosh season. Riley agrees. Says he got stronger in the spring, is more experienced and has profited from being coached by DC Alex Grinch. After not expressing much belief that Bookie was playing well enough to be an immediate starter at a playoff caliber team like OU I’ve been quick to compliment #44 now – long and loud.
- Heisman votes must be submitted soon after Saturday’s conference championship games. Barring a nightmare losing game from Jalen Hurts and monumental winning performances from several pursuers, you’ve got to believe Hurts will head to NY as a Heisman finalist. But there’s no set rule on the number of invitees – most often three but sometimes four. We’d guess the Bedlam loss and limited success will keep OSU’s Chuba Hubbard off the list.
- Not expecting Sooners to have gifted starting DT Jalen Redmond for second straight game – out to undisclosed injury. Good time to ask is it just me or does it seem like OU’s having an increasing number of players out with concussion issues?
- Redmond’s sub/rotation partner LaRon Stokes has been as we’d been told back in August: “Good player who’ll play immediately … great kid … not difference-maker but needed."
- Can’t believe Brent Venables would turn down a head coaching position at an established program if he covets job.
- 1972 Sugar Bowl QBs Jack Mildren with OU and Pat Sullivan from Auburn (Heisman winner & Auburn icon) have now passed from cancer... Sullivan just prior to Auburn’s monumental home win over 'Bama. A pair of QBs I greatly admired as a young junior high and high school QB. Don’t make em’ better than General Jack.
Thanks for checking in!