There are four bowl games on Wednesday this week but only one features former conference opponents. That would be Texas against Missouri in the Texas Bowl. The Horns, of course, are in the Big 12 and Missouri was before moving to the SEC a few years back. Now, the Tigers (-2.5) are in command of the latest Texas Bowl Odds, but let’s see if Texas value can be tempting.
Tigers vs. Longhorns 2017 Texas Bowl Odds & Game Preview
— Texas Football (@TexasFootball) 23 de diciembre de 2017
- When: Wednesday, 9 PM ET
- Where: NRG Stadium, Houston
- TV: ESPN
- Live Stream: Watch ESPN
- Radio: Tunein.com
- Texas Bowl Odds: Missouri Tigers -2.5 (60.5)
The Texas Bowl debuted in Houston in 2006, replacing the defunct Houston Bowl, which played annually from 2000 to 2005. Rutgers beat Kansas State in the first Texas Bowl, 37-10. Since 2014, it has featured an SEC school against a Big 12 one. Texas played in this bowl in 2014, losing to Arkansas 31-7. Missouri was in the bowl back in 2009 when it was in the Big 12 and lost to Navy 35-13. Last year, Kansas State beat Texas A&M 33-28. Most Texas Bowls have included a school from the state. Some future big-name NFL players have been named MVP of this bowl game: Ray Rice (2006), Andy Dalton (2007), Ryan Tannehill (2011) and Leonard Fournette (2015).
Texas and Missouri have met 23 times with a 17-6 record in the Longhorns’ favor. The history between the two teams began in 1894 where the Tigers were victorious in a 28-0 shutout. One of the biggest games between the two was the 1946 Cotton Bowl where the Longhorns star quarterback Bobby Layne accounted for all of the team’s points in a 40-27 victory. The last meeting occurred in 2011 with Missouri winning 17-5 at home.
Big 12 schools are 3-5 all-time in the bowl. SEC schools are 2-1.
Why consider the Longhorns Texas Bowl Odds?
This is UT’s 54th all-time bowl appearance, the second-most in college football history. The Longhorns own a bowl record of 27-24-3. Texas will be playing an SEC opponent for the 22nd time in a bowl game. The Longhorns own a record of 12-8-1 in bowl games against current SEC members.
Five Longhorns were named All-Big 12 by the Associated Press. Four – P Michael Dickson, DB DeShon Elliott, DL Poona Ford and LB Malik Jefferson – were named to the first team. Dickson, a native of Sydney, Australia, leads the nation averaging 48.4 yards per punt. He was named the 2017 Ray Guy Award winner. He has punted 73 times this season, with 34 punts of more than 50 yards and 32 punts downed inside the 20-yard line.
Elliott was a finalist for the Jim Thorpe Award. The junior safety totaled 63 tackles (50 alone) with 8.5 tackles for loss, 1.5 sacks, six interceptions, three forced fumbles and nine pass breakups this season. His six interceptions rank third nationally and his two interceptions returned for a touchdown are first. Jefferson is one of the country’s top linebackers.
The Longhorns feature one of the nation’s top defensive units, as they are tied for the national lead in non-offensive touchdowns (seven), defensive touchdowns (six) and interceptions returned for a touchdown (five). Texas leads the Big 12 in third- and fourth-down defense, defensive touchdowns, and first downs defense, while ranking second in interceptions, rushing defense, pass efficiency defense, sacks, total defense and turnovers gained.
Texas ranks sixth nationally in rushing defense, allowing just 105.7 yards per game on the ground. The Longhorns have held seven of their 12 opponents under 100 yards rushing, the most at UT since doing so 10 times in 2009. UT ranks fourth nationally in third-down defense (.276).
Shane Buechele will start at QB. But that doesn’t mean true freshman Sam Ehlinger will not play at all for the entirety of the Texas Bowl. Both have played in each of UT’s past three games. But the deciding factor, Coach Tom Herman said, was ball control. Too many times this season Ehlinger made scatterbrained mistakes at critical junctures. His turnovers late in the season, particularly the costly interception against Texas Tech, cost him the job. In contrast, Herman said Buechele hasn’t done anything to lose it.
Why consider the Tigers Texas Bowl Odds?
The Tigers are playing in a bowl game for the 32nd time, which ranks 30th all-time in NCAA history. Mizzou is 15-16 all-time in bowl games, including victories in its last three appearances. The Tigers’ 15 bowl wins are tied for 26th all-time in NCAA history (Arkansas, West Virginia, TCU and Syracuse also have 15 bowl wins).
The Horns are going to be short-handed in the game. Freshman running back Toneil Carter, junior tight end Garrett Gray and sophomore receiver Lil’Jordan Humphrey will not play because of a team rules violation. The Longhorns also announced that defensive tackle Chris Nelson, who made seven starts this season, will miss the game because of an elbow injury. This all came after three of the Longhorns’ best players — offensive tackle Connor Williams, safety DeShon Elliott and cornerback Holton Hill — announced that they would declare for the NFL Draft and not play in the game.
Texas’ Malik Jefferson, the co-Big 12 defensive player of the year, is doubtful to play because of a turf toe injury that has kept him from fully participating in practice for weeks. The junior started all 12 games at linebacker, helping the Longhorns finish fourth nationally in third-down defense, sixth nationally in rush defense, eighth in fourth-down defense all while only allowing 21.7 points per game.
A win would be historic for Mizzou, as the 2017 Tigers would become just the second Power 5 team in college football history (Rutgers, 2008) to register eight victories after starting the season 1-5. Since its 1-5 start, Mizzou has run off six-straight wins by an average margin of 30.0 points while scoring 45 or more points in each game for the first time in program history.
The biggest turnaround came on the defensive side of the ball. In the first six games, Mizzou ranked 126th nationally in scoring defense (42.2 points per game) and 123rd in total defense (498.7 yards per game). Since that time, Mizzou has allowed just 21.3 points per game and just 351.8 yards per game, cutting the point total nearly in half while reducing its yards per game average by 150.6.
Mizzou is just the 13th team in FBS history to start 1-5 and make a bowl game. The last Power 5 team to do so was Texas Tech in 2012. The only SEC team to ever start 1-5 and qualify for a bowl was the 1983 Ole Miss team that wound up in the Independence Bowl but lost to Air Force, 9-3.
Mizzou ranks among the nation’s Top 25 in 16 different statistical categories and leads the country in tackles for loss allowed, plays of 50+ yards, passing plays of 50+ yards and a number of defensive players with a TFL. Junior quarterback Drew Lock’s 43 touchdown passes to lead the nation, and rank as the most-ever by a Mizzou (39; Chase Daniel in 2008) or SEC signal caller (40; Kentucky’s Andre Woodson in 2007).
- Longhorns are 2-5 ATS in their last 7 vs. SEC.
- Tigers are 7-1 ATS in their last 8 games overall.
- Tigers are 30-7 ATS in their last 37 games after allowing more than 40 points in their previous game.
- Favorite is 4-0 ATS in their last 4 meetings.
- Tigers are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games after scoring more than 40 points in their previous game.
Way too many Texas players sitting out even though it’s basically a home game. Take red-hot Missouri to back their Texas Bowl Odds.