Oklahoma Odds To Win The National Football Championship
Analyzing Oklahoma's Stock
First-year head coach Lincoln Riley didn't waste time jumping into the deep waters. Outsiders might have expected a lull in expectations following the exit of long-time head coach Bob Stoops, but if anything Riley has injected new life and offensive innovation into this program.
In the preseason, Oklahoma was valued at a modest 16/1 (+1600) to win the national title by most major sportsbooks. An early season win at Ohio State raised the bar, but an Oct. 7 loss to Iowa State pretty much removed the Sooners from any talk of serious national championship contenders. The Sooners then reeled off eight consecutive wins capped by 41-17 beatdown of 13th-ranked TCU in the Big 12 Championship Game.The Sooners To Win The Championship (+333)
- The rap on the Sooners is simple: dynamic offense and suspect defense - especially for a team this close to bringing home the title.
- Oklahoma is number one in total offense, averaging an NCAA-best 8.44 yards a play and scoring more TD's (75) than any other offense in the country. They are led by QB Baker Mayfield, who looks like something of a lock to win the Heisman Trophy.
- Defensively, Oklahoma is ranked 57th in the nation and has surrendered 30 or more points five times this year including 52 to Oklahoma State and 41 to Baylor. The unit showed some improvement in the final month of the season, but still gave up 31 points to West Virginia in its regular season finale.
- Matched against Georgia in the opening round of the playoffs at the Rose Bowl, the game has the feel of a track meet as the Bulldogs powerful rushing attack should present a plethora of problems for this OU defense.
Oklahoma is listed as a two-point underdog against Georgia by most major online sportsbooks. If the Sooners can survive the opening round game against Georgia, they will assuredly be the dog again against the winner of the Clemson/Alabama game.
From a betting value standpoint, there will be little difference in taking the +333 (Risk $100 to win $333) on Oklahoma to win the national title versus taking the Sooners on the moneyline in game 1 where they figure to be around +105 and parlaying the winnings and the original stake on another moneyline bet in game 2 where they will probably fall between +110 and +115.
A bettor who likes Oklahoma to win the title, but has less tolerance for risk, might prefer to bet his stake on the ML in game 1 simply to avoid the risk of having to win two games versus one. Obviously, in this scenario, a game 1 win would allow the bettor to play the same amount on the moneyline in game 2 without risk of losing his original stake.
The options are simple. Taking Oklahoma +333 to win the title will kick back $333 on a $100 bet. Taking Oklahoma +105 on the moneyline in Game 1 would produce $105 profit on $100 bet. From there, the bettor could roll the $105 profit into another moneylilne wager in the title game, or parlay both the $105 profit and original $100 stake for a total risk of $205 on the moneyline in the championship where the Sooners figure to be around +115.
It's hard to call someone crazy for liking Oklahoma in this playoff series. The Sooners can light up a scoreboard and can never be counted out. If they are able to come up with some key turnovers and string together enough stops, it is conceivable for them to win a national championship. That said, +333 seems like a value-neutral proposition considering they'll have to deal with a nasty defense in Clemson or Alabama in the title game if able to escape Georgia in Game 1.
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