NOTE: All betting lines are pulled from DraftKings Sportsbook and are subject to change
Despite the thrilling 3-point 2OT victory over Oklahoma State, the TCU Horned Frogs failed to cover the spread for the first time this season, closing as 5.5-point favorites. The Total kept climbing ahead of kickoff, but was not able to get high enough, closing at 70 in a game that went well over with 83 total points, but with 23 points coming after regulation under backers have to think they were on the right side. For the Kansas State Wildcats, coming off a bye with its last game being a 1-point win over Iowa State in a game that closed as a pick ‘em, with a total score of 19 that went well under the 45-point Total.
Moneyline: TCU -170; Kansas State +145
Spread: TCU -3.5; Kansas State +3.5
Total Points: 54
This is a tough spot for the Frogs and the marketplace has thrown its support behind the WIldcats. TCU is coming off 3 straight high pressure Top-25 contests, plus the high emotion game vs. SMU in Dallas, while Kansas State is entering off of a restful Bye week. The implied approximate final score would be TCU 28 - KSU 25. This line opened with TCU as a 6.5-point favorite and clearly the books took big love for the ‘Cats as this line has continued in favor of KSU, dropping 3 full points and it wouldn’t be surprising for this to keep moving towards K-State. This is the lowest total on the Frogs all season and has also plummeted from an opening of 59 and there’s been suggestion that it’s influenced by a weather forecast that while showing a clear warm evening in Fort Worth is projecting heavy sustained winds with gusts up to 40 mph. The theory being that the winds will slow the TCU passing attack while KSU is perhaps better equipped to attack with its run game. That seems to be selling Kendre Miller and Max Duggan and the TCU Defense short in my estimation, but I can see the logic and the big line movement against TCU is concerning.
Note: Prop lines are pulled from PrizePicks and are subject to change
Adrian Martinez (KSU): 200.5
Max Duggan (TCU): 290.5
Adrian Martinez (KSU): 14.5
Max Duggan (TCU): 22
Martinez has gone over the this yardage total in his last two away Big 12 games, but those are the only games in which he’s gone above even 150 yards; he’s also only had more than even 12 completions twice this season. However, the TCU Defense is surrendering over 264 yards passing per game and has only held Oklahoma (!) below the 200-yard threshold. If the above noted theory about terrible winds and a focus on moving the ground game forward, you’d have to side with the unders for Martinez, even at the seemingly very low figure.
Max Duggan has hit 22 completions in each of his games started this season, but the yardage number appears a bit steep. Duggan has only gone over that yardage number twice against FBS competition: vs. Oklahoma and at Kansas, neither of which trots out a defense nearly as talented and dangerous as the Wildcats. Add in this alleged weather induced concerns, it’s a dangerous week to put your trust behind any passing overs, including Duggan’s.
Adrian Martinez (KSU): 70.5
Deuce Vaughn (KSU): 110.5
Max Duggan (TCU): 45.5
Kendre MIller (TCU): 92.5
Well, if the passing numbers are going to be held down, that must mean that these runners are going to get loose. Adrian Martinez has blossomed in his new Manhattan home, leaving the prison that was the Nebraska offense under Scott Frost, and that has been best displayed in the explosive use of his rushing talents. He has gone over this number the last three games and the TCU defense is averaging under 2 sacks per game, limiting the number of negative plays for a running QB. TCU’s Defense has done a nice job containing running QBs, even as Spencer Sanders got two rushing scores he was held under 70 yards. Deuce Vaughn is one of the best RBs in college football and is excellent in this Chris Klieman offensive system. He had a bad day against Iowa State in his last game, with just 23 yards on 10 carries, but outside of that he’s averaging 127.6 yards per game. Vaughn is elite and will prove a huge challenge for TCU, especially with injuries in the LB group.
Duggan has rushed beyond this number the last three games and I’d say is very likely to again Saturday, but with sacks credited against QB rushing yardage, I could see a big day up front from Felix Anudike-Uzomah and the K-State pass rush bringing his numbers down. For Miller, the K-State Defense has only allowed an opposing RB go over this total once, with Oklahoma’s Eric Gray running for 114 back in Week 4. Those other RBs aren’t Kendre Miller though, who has continued to look incredible as the lead back for the Frogs - rushing for 6.4 yards per carry and going well over this yardage total three times this season.
Deuce Vaughn (KSU): 18.5
Phillip Brooks (KSU): 45.5
Malik Knowles (KSU): 48.5
Quentin Johnston (TCU): 75.5
Derius Davis (TCU): 30.5
Taye Barber (TCU): 40.5
For the Wildcat pass catchers, Brooks and Knowles each have gone over 50 yards three times this season with each going over 100 yards against Iowa State. On first look, this feels embarrassingly low for Vaughn’s receiving total, a back capable of taking any touch for big yards, however Vaughn has only crossed this number once all season and that required 8 receptions in the KSU loss to Tulane. I can see Deuce getting a few short targets on Saturday, especially if the Frogs attempt to cover him with a Linebacker.
On the TCU side: given the Duggan yardage total of 290.5, these receiving numbers look low, even as the Frogs do often spread the ball around to many contributors. Davis will be looking for a bounce back game, having gone over this number three times before a down game vs. OSU. Barber has only gone over this number once vs FBS opponents, his monster 107-yard game vs. the Sooners - it’s a bit surprising that Barber’s total is higher than Davis’. QJ has dominated recently, averaging 193 yards the last two weeks, but if KSU throws its defensive resources at stopping Johnston, maybe the wealth is spread around a bit.