Oklahoma vs. West Virginia prediction and game preview. Projecting who wins the game between the Sooners and Mountaineers.
Oklahoma vs. West Virginia Game Preview
When: Saturday, November 19 – 8:00 p.m. ET
Where: Milan Puskar Stadium, Morgantown, WV
Three teams are in the chase for a Big 12 championship. Two of them will meet in Morgantown on Saturday night for what ought to be an electric atmosphere. Everyone has been chasing Oklahoma, which overcame a slow start to reel off seven consecutive wins. The Sooners actually dropped out of the Coaches Poll after Week 3, but have rallied back into the top 10, with a long shot of getting into the playoff discussion with two more wins. West Virginia has only one loss, but it was to Oklahoma State, so it must hold serve at Milan Puskar to remain a contender. If the Mountaineers win their next three and the Cowboys drop one game, the ‘eers will capture their first-ever Big 12 title.
What To Know About Oklahoma
Bob Stoops deserves a ton of credit for engineering an in-season turnaround after his Sooners were blown away at home by Ohio State. The offense has been unstoppable, with Baker Mayfield and Dede Westbrook teaming up for the best pitch-and-catch combo in the country. Plus, Samaje Perine is healthy and Joe Mixon is out of the doghouse, so the complementary ground game once again features depth and talent. The weak link in Norman is a defense yielding almost 31 points per game. The run D has actually been decent, thanks to linebackers Jordan Evans and Emmanuel Beal, but the secondary is a liability that’s allowed 26 touchdown passes.
What to Know About West Virginia
The Mountaineers have played one team that’s currently ranked—the Cowboys—and lost badly, 37-20. So, there’s a ton to prove this week to a leery nation. West Virginia did take an important step in last week’s win over the Longhorns, but it’s not as if the team dominated. On the contrary. The Mountaineers were outgained, 536-383, and Skyler Howard was picked off three times. The heroes were defensive backs Kyzir White and Rasul Douglas, who combined for enough big plays on defense to keep the team in the Big 12 hunt. But it’s going to take a more collaborative and cleaner effort to get past the Sooners in Week 12.
Offense: Oklahoma. The Sooners enjoy an edge at quarterback and the skill positions, though West Virginia can more than hold its own at the line of scrimmage.
Defense: West Virginia. The difference? The Mountaineers’ ability to defend the pass, which has been a problem all year long in Norman.
Special Teams: Oklahoma. While both teams have had issues on special teams, the Sooners can point to versatile kicking specialist Austin Seibert and return man Joe Mixon.
Coaching: Oklahoma. Dana Holgorsen is having a good year. Stoops is having a good 21st century.
Intangibles: West Virginia. True, Oklahoma is hotter, but Morgantown is extremely tough to play … at night … with a Big 12 championship potentially riding on the outcome.
Matchup To Watch
Westbrook vs. Douglas
Westbrook is to the Biletnikoff Award what Lamar Jackson is to the Heisman, teaming up with Mayfield for 68 receptions for 1,254 yards and 14 touchdowns. As receivers go, he’s the quintessential home run hitter. But Douglas has excellent size and instincts, and his effort versus Texas last week was indicative of the leadership role he’s assumed in his senior season.
Oklahoma at West Virginia Betting Odds
Spread: Oklahoma -3
Oklahoma vs. West Virginia Prediction
In two of its toughest tests of the year, West Virginia displayed holes versus Oklahoma State and Texas. Holes that Oklahoma is uniquely suited to also exploit. Mayfield and the Sooners have too many options for an opponent that’s benefitted from a relatively soft schedule. OU hits defenses from myriad angles, and the Mountaineers lack the front seven playmakers needed to hit Perine and Mixon before they start rolling downhill. Howard will keep things close through the air, but Oklahoma will reduce its Big 12 title magic number with a critical road win.
Oklahoma vs. West Virginia Score Prediction: Oklahoma 34, West Virginia 28