Florida State a Huge Favorite Over Oklahoma State - But Why?

football fans cheeringOn Thursday, the 2014 NCAA Football regular season gets underway with games on Thursday, Friday and on Saturday. The big game of the week finds the reigning 2013 NCAA Champions and preseason ranked #1 the Florida State Seminoles taking on the Oklahoma State Cowboys at 8:05pm on ABC TV the Advocare Cowboys Classic. The game will be played at the AT&T Stadium in Arlington Texas, the home of the Dallas Cowboys of the NFL.

Since there has been numerous articles covering the Preseason No. 1 FSU Seminoles, we need to take a closer look at the Oklahoma State Cowboys. Their Head Coach Mike Gundy (77-38) has been at Oklahoma State for ten years. OK State leads the series with FSU the Seminoles 3-1.

The Cowboys have the lowest percent (54.29%) of returning lettermen from their 2013 team compared to any other Division I team. They have only 38 returning and lost 32 players.

One interesting statistic is that the OK State Cowboys have scored at least 20 points in their last 52 games going back to the 2010 season. That’s the second longest streak in the United States Division I NCAA Football.

To date the Cowboys have never beaten a team ranked in the No.1 position at game time. With the upcoming game with #1 FSU it will be the tenth time OK State has played an AP ranked No.1 team dating back to 2008.

Since 2008 under coach Gundy the Cowboys have upset four top ten Associated Press ranked teams and three of those wins were with teams ranked in the top five and amazingly three of four of those win were away games. The four big wins were in 2013 beating the No.3 Baylor team 49-17 at Baylor, in 2011 beating No.4 Stanford 41-38 in Fiesta Bowl, also in 2011 beating Texas A&M 30-29 in Texas and in 2008 beating No.2 Missouri 28-23 in Missouri.

The OK State Cowboys in 2014 only have six players who have more than 10 career starts and that group has 97 combined starts prior to this 2014 season.

History indicates that Oklahoma State has the ability to hit with explosive plays that are of 20 yards or more and since back in 2010 they have had more than 348 of that type of per play gains, which ranks third in the nation. Compare that to FSU who ranks sixth having some 309 of that type of play gains.

The Cowboys offense in recent years has only allowed their opponents to sack their quarterback limited times and in that category they are ranked 1st in the Big 12 an 9th nationally in those same years.

An interesting statistic is that since 2005, the Cowboys have 19 consecutive wins when they did not permit a turnover in the game and they have forced at least one turnover in some 21 consecutive games. That includes their last 20 games of 24 games in which they either tied or won the turnover battle. Then since 2008 when they have won the turnover battle they won 34 of their last 35 games. Since 2009 the Cowboys lead the nation in forced turnover with 163 while FSU ranks 10th in the nation with 134 forced turnovers during that same period.

The Seminoles are listed in the sportsbook odds as a -17 1/2 point road favorite, with the over/under set at 63 points.