Free Sugar Bowl Prediction: Cowboys vs Rebels Odds
College football betting on the 2016 Sugar Bowl sees the Oklahoma State Cowboys taking on the Ole Miss Rebels Friday January 1st at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome, New Orleans, Louisiana. Cappers Picks provides complimentary handicapping picks all NCAA football season long so stay tuned for more FREE college football predictions.
Oklahoma State Cowboys (10-2) vs. Ole Miss Rebels (9-3)
Date: Friday, January 1st 2016
Time: 8:30 PM
Venue: Mercedes-Benz Superdome, New Orleans Louisiana
NCAA Football Spread: Mississippi -7
NCAA Betting Total: 68
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Hopefully New Year’s revellers can avoid debauchery – or at least nurse their hangover – long enough to enjoy an excellent college match-up between the high-flying Oklahoma State Cowboys and the talented Ole Miss Rebels.
Mississippi is looking to prove itself; three losses sounds significant but it was to an upstart Florida team, Paxton Lynch (cough sorry, I meant Memphis) and a one-point squeaker loss to Arkansas. Ole Miss also beat Alabama and LSU this season, so it knows it can roll with the big boys.
Their New Year’s Day opponent, Oklahoma State, embodies everything people know about the Big 12 Conference. The Cowboys rank seventh in the nation in passing (357.3 yards per game) and ninth nationally in scoring offense (over 41 points per) while not being able to run the ball or stop anyone. It is very much a spread-it-out-and-sling-it Big 12-style of play.
Ole Miss’s secondary must be prepared for lots of work on Friday night.
Cowboys QB Mason Rudolph has had a prolific season (3,591 yards, 21 TDs) but he is recovering from a foot injury. He says he’s good to go for the Sugar Bowl, but OSU head coach Mike Gundy has suggested that back-up J.W. Walsh will see a lot of snaps. Oklahoma State’s QB situation going into the bowl game raises some questions in Stillwater, no doubt.
Wide receiver James Washington has been the team’s leading pass-catcher in 2015, grabbing 52 balls for 1,077 yards and 10 TDs. David Glidden (53 receptions, 807 yards, 3 TDs) and Marcell Ateman (40, 696, five) are also central components of the passing game. The run game is very much by committee, with only shifty junior Raymond Taylor seeing much success (6.4 yards per carry), so the Cowboys will predictably lean on the aerial attack, regardless who starts under center.
Defensively, the Cowboys must rely on out-scoring the opposition. Yet, there are some disruptive defenders, led by Jordan Burton (91 tackles, 8 TFLs) DE Emmanuel Ogbah (17.5 TFLs, 13 sacks) and Jimmy Bean (10.5 TFLs, 5.5 sacks). Those players must penetrate a talented Ole Miss offensive line in order to harass QB Chad Kelly. That could be a central part of how the Cowboys fare in New Orleans.
The Rebs know they belong here, and probably think they were capable of more in an ultra-competitive SEC. They were a last-second conversion away from beating the Arkansas Razorbacks earlier in the year, and got hoodwinked against Memphis, who is led by a surefire NFL passer under center (Lynch).
That leaves a loss against a very good Gators squad. Woulda, coulda, shoulda. It doesn’t mean that Mississippi isn’t a highly talented football program. Quarterback Chad Kelly, RB Jaylen Walton, WR Laquon Treadwell, OT Laremy Tunsil and TE Evan Engram jump off the map.
Defensively, the Rebels run on DL Robert Nkemdiche, LB C.J. Johnson and DB Trae Elston. There will be a major void after Nkemdiche was suspended for the Sugar Bowl following an arrest. The “D” will have to dip into its improving depth (years of strong recruiting classes are paying off in Oxford) to patch over that sizable hole.
Pivot Kelly should be up to the task. The junior from Buffalo, NY presented a dual-threat at Ole Miss this year, throwing for 3,740 yards and 27 TDs but also rushing for 427 and another 10 majors. He is the straw that stirs the drink on offense. In addition to Treadwell, Cody Core and Quincy Adeboyejo are threats to snag Kelly’s offerings.
Ole Miss is a skilled football program, and they know it. They are excited to show it.
There’s no denying that Oklahoma State has a clinical pass attack, but the Rebels should be simply too much for the Cowboys to handle. I see Kelly having a big game and even with the loss of pass-rushing threat Nkemdiche, the superior skill of the Rebels should translate to an expanding lead.
NCAA Football Handicapping Trends
- Cowboys are 6-6 ATS in their last 12 games overall.
- Cowboys are 2-2 when registered as the underdog.
- Cowboys are 3-2 ATS when away from Stillwater.
- Rebels are 7-4-1 ATS in their last 12 games overall.
- Rebels are 6-4-1 ATS when favorited.
Free Sugar Bowl NCAA Football Prediction
I expect Kelly, Walton, Treadwell and Co. to overwhelm Oklahoma State’s defense. The Cowboys should be able to score in their own right, but I believe the competition in the SEC was stiffer this year than it was in OSU’s Big 12, and thus the difference in depth charts will show at the Superdome on New Year’s Day.
4* Free NCAA Betting Pick: Over
Look for the Ole Miss Rebels to make a statement and win a high-scoring Sugar Bowl.
2016 Sugar Bowl Free Score Prediction: Ole Miss 45 – Oklahoma State 27
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