The 11th-ranked Colorado Buffaloes will look to avoid the ‘upset’ at the hands of the 13th-ranked Oklahoma State Cowboys when the two teams take to the gridiron for their in the Valero Alamo Bowl.
The annual postseason matchup will get underway on Thursday, Dec. 29 at 9:00 PM ET, live from the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas and will air live on ESPN. Now, let’s find out if Colorado can get the win or cover the college football betting line as a 3-point favorite.
College Football 2016 Alamo Bowl Prediction: Cowboys Vs Buffaloes
2016 Valero Alamo Bowl
Who: Oklahoma State Cowboys (9-3) at Colorado Buffaloes (10-2)
When: Thursday, Dec. 29, 2016 at 9:00 PM ET
Where: Alamodome, San Antonio, TX
Live Stream: Watch ESPN
NCAAF Odds: Colorado -3 / Game Total: 64
Oklahoma State Cowboys
Oklahoma State (9-3 SU, 7-5 ATS) had their four-game winning streak abruptly halted in their 38-20 smackdown at the hands of Oklahoma in their regular season finale while failing to cover the spread as a 12-point underdog. The Cowboys are averaging an impressive 38.6 points per game to rank 20th nationally in scoring as quarterback Mason Rudolph passed for 3,777 yards with 25 TD passes and just four interceptions while completing an impressive 63.0 percent of his passes.
Running back Justice Hill rushed for a team-high 1,042 yards and five scores while wide receiver James Washington haled in 62 passes for 1,209 receiving yards and nine touchdowns. Fellow wideout Jalen McCleskey added 762 receiving yards and seven TD grabs, but the Cowboys were mediocre at best defensively as they allowed 28.0 to rank a mediocre 65th in points allowed nationally.
The Buffaloes (10-2 SU, 10-2 ATS) will have plenty of motivation after losing to No. 4 Washington 41-10 in the Pac-12 Championship game and never coming close to covering the spread as an 8-point underdog. Colorado averages an impressive 32.8 to rank 43rd in scoring nationally as quarterback Sefo Liufau passed for 2,171 yards with 11 TD passes and six interceptions while rushing for 494 yards and seven scores. Liufau injured his ankle and is questionable for this contest.
Running back Phillip Lindsay rushed for a team-high 1,189 yards and 16 touchdowns while wide receivers Shay Fields (845 yards, 9 TDs) and Devin Ross (765 yards, 5 TDs) combined for over 1,600 receiving yards and 15 touchdown grabs. Defensively, the Buffaloes limited the opposition to just 20.4 to rank a stellar 18th in points allowed nationally.
Expert ATS Pick & Final Score Prediction
A narrow 53 percent of public bettors like Oklahoma State to cover the college football betting line as a 3-point underdog, but I don’t, mostly because I believe the Buffaloes have a big edge on defense and more motivation to show they can play with anyone.
I know Oklahoma State is 4-0 ATS in their last four games following an ATS loss, but the Cowboys are also 2-4 ATS in their last six meeting against Colorado and will face a Buffaloes team that has gone 8-1 ATS in their last nine games after rushing for more than 200 yards rushing in their previous game.
This game will ultimately boil down to Colorado’s defense versus Oklahoma State’s offense and since defense wins championships, I say the Buffaloes narrowly cover in a thriller.