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Stanford vs. Oklahoma State 2012 Fiesta Bowl Preview & Prediction

Cardinal vs. Cowboys NCAA Football – 2012 Fiesta Bowl Odds

In what is really a BCS consolation game, two of the top five scoring offenses in the nation will square off for the first time ever, and , it should be a game for the ages.

Bowl Game Title : Fiesta Bowl
Stanford (11-1) vs Oklahoma State (11-1)
Date: 8:30 PM ET, Monday, January 2, 2012
Venue: University of Phoenix Stadium, Phoenix, Arizona
Broadcast: ESPN/ESPN3
Betting Lines: from Bovada.lv:
Money Line: OFF
Spread: +3.5 Stanford
Over/Under: 73.5

Of course when I say that, I mean this is a game that people who love defense should avoid. This is going to be an absolute shootout if things go as they are expected to.

First you have the balanced attack of Stanford who just so happen to have quarterback Andrew Luck. The man that is already the supposed consensus number one pick in the upcoming NFL draft. It’s most likely the final college game for Luck, and he should be able to exploit an Oklahoma State defense that allows 265.6 passing yards per game, 102nd in the nation

On the other hand, star WR Justin Blackmon (1,336 receiving yards, 15 TDs) and 28-year-old QB Brandon Weeden (4,328 yards, 34 TDs, 12 INTs) lead an Oklahoma offense that ranked third nationally in total yards (557.0 per game) and second in scoring (49.3 points per game),.

Stanford’s defense was actually quite good this season, and have been tough against the run, ranking fifth in the nation at 90.0 yards allowed per game, but that might not do them much good against the Cowboys. Oklahoma State does most of its damage through the air. [soliloquy id=”82219″]

If Stanford is going to win this game, they are going to have to find a way to slow down the passing attack of Oklahoma State. The only way that can be done is to try and keep Weeden off of the field. This can be done by controlling the clock with their stellar run game, which the Cowboys are not exactly good at defending.

If Stanford can get an early score or two and then control the ball, they have a shot of getting out of Glendale with a win in Luck’s last collegiate game.

For Oklahoma State to cover the 3.5 points, they need to show more grit on the defensive side of the ball than what they have to date. Stanford is not like the Big 12 schools the Cowboys have faced this season. They play effectively on both sides of the ball, and are actually a team capable of keeping pace with Oklahoma State.

I think game will end up being a shootout that will come very close to hitting the 73.5 point total given. Whether or not it hits that number will depend on who wins the game. If Oklahoma State is able to come away with a victory, I believe it will exceed the number. If Stanford wins, it will be because they were able to kill enough clock, causing the total to fall just shy of the number.

That being said, I expect Oklahoma State will continue their good play with another victory to cap off Brandon Weeden’s career with a bang.

Matt’s Prediction: Oklahoma State 42, Stanford 38

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