For those who are the gambling type, I've been doing some perusing of Bovada's college future bets. And I've found some very intriguing stuff.
First for the OSU odds. Currently we are listed at 8.5 wins, with the over being favored thus far. Seems fair. I don't think it's a stretch at all to say we could go 9-3 this year. There are only four games that worry me slightly: at Arizona (a late start combined with Lunt's first "big" game of the year); at Kansas State (they are terribly underrated); home for West Virginia (I believe they've got some great talent, and will give us a good game); and at OU (despite destroying them last year, I'm still nervous about going to Norman). I don't think we lose all four of those games. And we can easily run the table with the rest of our schedule, assuming the early hype about our team is true.
Next: Will the OSU Cowboys play in a BCS bowl? A bet of "yes" is currently listed at 4/1, which is decent considering we lost a bunch of amazing players. However, I'm not totally sold that we are going to pick up where we left off last year. I think a 9-3 record and a trip to the Cotton Bowl would be a great start for the Wes Lunt dynasty. But as my colleague pointed out, it's not crazy to think that we could win the Big 12 Championship for a second straight year. And if that happens, it's an automatic trip to the Fiesta Bowl (if not the National Championship).
So how about some other notable futures? From the Big 12:
Kansas is at 3.5 wins. It should be interesting to see what Charlie Weis can do in Lawrence this year.
Kansas State is at 7.5 wins. Again, I think that’s criminal. Reports have said that Colin Klein has improved every facet of his game this year. And in case OSU fans have forgotten, he was pretty damn good last year.
OU is at 10 wins. I’m not quite sold on that one. Don’t get me wrong, they will still be good. Now, are they Big 12 Champions good? I don’t think so. But I think they could be good this year (as much as it pains me to say that).
New conference member TCU is at 8 wins. Which, until they get their drug problem taken care of, I think I will be avoiding.
The Longhorns are at 9 wins. Which I’m really confused about. Do they have a good starting QB? Or any starting QB? Didn’t think so.
Tech is at 6.5 wins. Uh… no.
Other new conference member West Virginia is at 8.5 wins. With one of the best QBs in the nation (in my opinion), I think this is most definitely possible.
Texas is 7/4 to make a BCS bowl game. Better odds than OSU. I have no comment.
West Virginia is 21/10 to make a BCS bowl game. Again, better odds than OSU. Hmm.
And my favorite of them all: there is an over/under for the amount of points per game that Texas will give up. That number is 15. Last season, they gave up 22.2 per game. Against Big 12 competition, it was 26 per game. And their schedule is no more favorable than last season. Yet somehow their defense is supposed to be a full touchdown better than last season, with only a marginally improved offense.
And those are just the futures, which will lock when the season starts September 1. Look forward to a weekly update on Big 12 games with their odds, along with any national games that have an effect on OSU.
Most of all, GO POKES!