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Betting the Big 12: Week 8

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Halloween horrors await?

NCAA Football: Kansas at Kansas State Scott Sewell-USA TODAY Sports

We’re back in the winning column. A 5-2 week has us feeling good. But something about this weekend just doesn’t feel right. Saturday is Halloween. Goblins and ghouls will be out and I’m not just talking about Lubbock at night. I don’t have any data to back it up but I’m pretty sure the weirdest football happens on October 31st. The gambling lines this week reflect that. They are extremely tricky, but there might just be some treats in there if we look close enough.

THE GAMES

#23 Iowa State (3-2) at Kansas (0-5)

Kickoff: 11:00am | TV: FS1 | The Line: Iowa State -28

On principle I hate laying this many points, but what does Kansas possibly have to scare Iowa State? The only hope here is that the Cyclones don’t have evening plans waiting for them in Ames as they try and rush through this game. I still can’t take the plunge with Kansas even though I think this line finally reflects how bad they are.

Pick: Iowa State -28

#16 Kansas State (4-1) at West Virginia (3-2)

Kickoff: 11:00am | TV: ESPN2 | The Line: West Virginia -4

Here’s the craziest line of the week. This situation comes up a couple of times each year, where a ranked team is a road underdog to an unranked team. The unranked team almost always covers. Let’s bring something rare into the column, a stat! Wouldn’t I be foolish to not listen to Bear?

Pick: West Virginia -4

TCU (1-3) at Baylor (1-2)

Kickoff: 2:30pm | TV: ESPN2 | The Line: TCU -2

Waco is an apple filled with razor blades on the scale of “Big 12 towns as Halloween candy”. Gary Patterson will fill me with joy if he comes out dressed as a cowboy for this game. It’s a weird one all around. TCU being a road favorite is fishy. I’m picking the home underdog.

Pick: Baylor +2

Texas (3-2) at #6 Oklahoma State (4-0)

Kickoff: 3:00pm | TV: FOX | The Line: Oklahoma State -3.5

The radar is way up here. This line makes absolutely no sense. Iowa State was a 3.5 point underdog in this exact spot a week ago, and despite the last minute cover, Oklahoma State was in control most of the way. It’s not like Texas showed us something crazy against Baylor. When these situations come up, I tend to just fade the popular pick. I’m guessing most bettors will see the number 6 next to Okie State and take them to cover as a short favorite, so we’re backing the Longhorns here.

Pick: Texas +3.5

#24 Oklahoma (3-2) at Texas Tech (2-3)

Kickoff: 7:00pm | TV: FOX | The Line: Oklahoma -14.5

I can’t think of many things scarier than Lubbock at night. Settle in because this will be a 5 hour+ game with a million points. The over/under could be 120 and I still wouldn’t hesitate to take the over. I don’t have much in the way of analysis here other than Texas Tech isn’t great but they aren’t a pushover, and Oklahoma should come crashing down a bit after the big road win over TCU.

Pick: Texas Tech +14.5

BEST BET FROM AROUND THE COUNTRY

Georgia -15 at Kentucky

I love this spot for the Bulldogs. They got beat up pretty bad by Alabama 2 weeks ago, but they mauled Auburn and Tennessee in the two weeks before. Kentucky just beat Tennessee on the road. It would appear these teams are trending in opposite directions, which is why I think Georgia beats Kentucky by 21+. This will be their reminder of how good they are.

NFL PICK OF THE WEEKEND

Lions +3 vs Colts

Phil Rivers has been all over the place this season, but I still contend he’s washed up. Detroit is a deceptive 3-3. Matt Stafford has great comeback potential if needed. So let’s take the points with the Lions at home.

HALLOWEEN PROP OF THE WEEK

Number of Reece’s peanut butter cups (the GOAT) consumed while watching football this weekend? O/U 5 million

SEASON RECORD: 29-16-1 (+11.4 units)