BIg 12 College Football Betting Picks: Texas Longhorns at #4 TCU Horned Frogs

Texas Longhorns at #Texas Christian Horned Frogs
Amon G. Carter Stadium – Fort Worth, Texas
Saturday, October 3, 2015, 12:00 pm Eastern, TV: ABC
Opening Line: TCU -17 1/2
Current Line: TCU -15
Opening Total: 70
Current Total: 70
Opening Money Line: TCU -950 / Texas +625
Current Money Line: TCU -700 / Texas +500

TCU is a 15 point favorite against Texas Saturday.
TCU is a 15 point favorite against Texas Saturday.

The Texas Longhorns are 1-3 this season with two straight heartbreaking losses. It doesn’t get any easier as they travel to the #4 Texas Christian Horned Frogs who are 4-0.

Texas leads the series 62-22-1 against TCU, inlcuding 28-9 in Fort Worth. The teams have been playing since 1897. They were longtime rivals in the old Southwest Conference, but didn’t become conference rivals again until TCU joined the Big 12 three seasons ago. The Horned Frogs have won 2 of the last 3 games in the series since then, including 48-10 last year in Austin.

Texas is coached by Charlie Strong. The Longhorns opened the season by getting crushed 38-3 at Notre Dame and then beat Rice 42-28 at home. Texas lost to California 45-44 in Austin, after missing the potential game tying extra point with just over a minute left. Last week, Texas hosted Oklahoma State in the Big 12 opener for both schools. Texas scored 14 points off two defensive touchdowns. The Longhorns had a 27-24 lead with  about a minute and a half left. The Cowboys tied it up with a field goal. Texas took over deep in their own territory after a kickoff. The Longhorns botched a punt that went only 10 yards. OSU took over already in field goal range. The Cowboys kicked another field goal and won 30-27. Texas was a 2.5 point underdog and the total was 63. Texas is 1-3 ATS and the total is 2-2 this season.

TCU is coached by Gary Patterson. TCU has a road win at Minnesota 23-17, plus home wins over Stephen F. Austin 70-7 and SMU 56-37. Last week, TCU also opened conference play with a road game at Texas Tech. The game was a wild affair that featured 13 ties or lead changes. The two teams combined for almost 1,400 yards and 70 first downs. TCU scored the game winning touchdown on a four yard touchdown pass from quarterback Trevone Boykin on a deflected ball to running back Aaron Green. Texas Tech tried a hail mary from their own 30 but it was incomplete. However, TCU was called for roughing the passer and Texas Tech had one more chance. After several laterals TEXas tech got all the way to the TCU 10 before getting forced out of bounds to make the final 55-52 Horned Frogs. TCU was a 5 point favorite and the total was 83.5. The Horned Frogs are 1-3 ATS and the total is 3-1 this season.

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Texas is being outscored 35-29 this season. The Longhorns average 345 yards per game on offense including 179 passing and 167 rushing yards. Texas is #106 or worse in total and passing offense. On defense, Texas is allowing 483 yards per game including 277 passing and 206 rushing yards. The Longhorns are #106 or worse in all defensive categories including points allowed out of 128 FBS teams.  Texas has forced ten turnovers and has four of their own. The Longhorns average 78 penalty yards per game and opponents average 46. Texas is 17/55 on third and fourth down conversions and opponents are 39/67. The Longhorns have forced 7 sacks and allowed 14. Texas is 9/9 scoring in the red zone with 7 touchdowns. Opponents are 19/21 with 14 touchdowns. Texas has a punt return for a touchdown plus 3 defensive touchdowns.

Quarterback Jerrod Heard has thrown for 613 yards with 2 touchdowns and 2 interceptions, and rushed for 295 yards on 55 carries and 3 touchdowns. Tyrone Swoopes has thrown for 101 yards and rushed for 60 yards on 14 carries with a touchdown.

Running back Johnathan Gray has 38 carries for 149 yards with 3 touchdowns, plus 5 catches for 79 yards. D’onta Foreman has 26 carries for 99 yards with 2 touchdowns, along with 2 catches for 20 yards.

Receiver Daje Johnson has 13 catches for 196 yards. John Burt has 7 catches for 181 yards and a touchdown.  Armanti Foreman has 7 catches for 123 yards and a touchdown.

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TCU is outscoring teams 51-28 this season. The Horned Frogs are #5 in scoring nationally. TCU averages 637 yards per game, including 402 passing and 235 rushing yards. The Horned Frogs are in the top 3 nationally in total and passing offense, and #22 in rushing. On defense, TCU is allowing 406 yards per game, including 235 passing and 171 rushing yards. The Horned Frogs have forced 5 turnovers and have 4 of their own. TCU averages 80 penalty yards per game and opponents average 39 per game. The Horned Frogs are 35/64 on third and fourth down conversions and opponents are 22/71. TCU has forced 10 sacks and allowed 4 this season. The Frogs are 20/25 scoring in the red zone with 19 touchdowns. Opponents are 13/16 with 9 touchdowns. TCU has one defensive touchdown this season.

Quarterback Trevone Boykin has completed 64.7% of his passes for 1,470 yards with 14 touchdowns and 3 interceptions. He has also rushed for 190 yards on 46 carries with 2 touchdowns. Back-up Bram Kohlhausen has thrown for 112 yards with a touchdown. Running back Aaron Green has 73 carries for 434 yards and 6 touchdowns, plus 4 catches and a touchdown. Trevorris Johnson and Kyle Hicks will also get some carries.

Three wide receivers are questionable or out for TCU. Kolby Listenbee is questionable with an undisclosed injury. Ty Slanina is out indefinitely with a broken collarbone. Andre Petties-Wilson is suspended indefinitely. Josh Doctson has 35 catches for 593 yards and 6 touchdowns. Listenbee has 9 catches for 202 yards and 2 touchdowns. Shaun Nixon has 8 catches for 112 yards. Ty Slanina has 11 catches for 134 yards. Desmon White has 10 catches for 134 yards.  KaVontae Turpin has 8 catches for 107 yards and 2 touchdowns. Five defensive players are listed as questionable or out.

Texas is 9-3 ATS against teams with winning home records, 5-2 after passing for less than 170 yards, 3-8 in October, 1-4 after a straight up loss, 1-5 overall, and on grass, and 0-5 after allowing 280 passing yards or more. The road team has covered four of the last five games in this series.

TCU is 4-0 ATS in October, 10-1 at home and on grass, 7-1 after gaining 450 total yards or more, 6-1 after allowing 40 points or more, 4-1 after failing to cover and against teams with losing records, 9-3 in Big 12 games, 12-4 after allowing 450 total yards or more, 14-5 overall, 11-4 after a straight up win, 8-3 after passing for 280 yards or more, 35-16 against teams with losing road records, 2-5 after scoring more than 40 points, and 1-4 after allowing 200 rushing yards or more.

This should be a high scoring game as both teams struggle on defense. TCU has a top flight offense though. They should win this game handily because Texas doesn’t have the firepower to get into a shootout with TCU.

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