NOTE: All betting lines are pulled from DraftKings Sportsbook and are subject to change
The College Football world will have all eyes focused on Lawrence, KS Saturday morning for a Top 20 showdown for Big 12 supremacy - sometimes preseason expert prognostications don’t capture the intangibles that push a team beyond its high school star ratings. The Kansas Jayhawks enter the game undefeated and continue to baffle oddsmakers, going 5-0 against the spread, including winning outright as home 3.5-point underdogs vs. Iowa State last week. The Frogs also remain undefeated on the field and against the spread, also covering as home underdogs with the big win over Oklahoma. With the national spotlight on this game, what does the marketplace say about this one?
Moneyline: TCU -245; Kansas +205
Spread: TCU -6.5; Kansas +6.5
Total Points: 69.5
The line is again projecting a high-scoring contest with an approximate implied final score of TCU 38 - Kansas 31. This one opened with the Frogs as just 5-point favorites which was quickly bet up to a TD, but has now settled at 6.5. Something’s got to give here: TCU has been great as a favorite and underdog, while the Jayhawks continue to win no matter what the oddsmakers put the number. Given that these two programs have played some unexpectedly close games over the last decade, it would be surprising for either team to run away with this one in a blow out. On the total, the Frogs have gone over in 3 games, with the only under being at Colorado. Both defenses have been strong thus far, but so have the offenses - if you think these teams will approach the game with a goal of keeping the opposing offense off the field, the game could go under this total.
Note: Prop lines are pulled from PrizePicks and are subject to change
Max Duggan (TCU): 299.5
Jalon Daniels (Kansas): 209.5
Max Duggan (TCU): 22.5
Jalon Daniels (Kansas): 16.5
Daniels has averaged under 200 yards per game for the season and has only surpassed this number once in regulation, with 324 yards against Duke, while also going over in the OT win vs. West Virginia. The horrific statistical game vs. ISU with just 93 yards is greatly reducing Daniels’ per-game average and may be artificially reducing this number. In the 4 non-OT games, Daniels averaged just 13.75 completions per game, so even the low 16.5 number may be too high. Perhaps the Jayhawks will be behind a bit in this one and need to lean on Daniels to move the ball through the air.
As for Mad Max, he has been on a rocket ship to start the season, crossing the 300 yard mark in just 3 quarters against Oklahoma. The Kansas defense is surrendering just 269 pass yards per game, so Max and squad would need to excel to jump up 30+ yards, but the Frogs certainly have the talent to make it happen. In 3 quarters each game, Max went over this completion total against OU and Tarleton State
Kendre Miller (TCU) 94.5
Jalon Daniels (Kansas): 52.5
Devin Neal (Kansas): 67.5
With Kansas’ #2 RB Daniel Hinshaw and his 9 carries for 52 yards per game out with an injury this week, it would be reasonable to expect the rushing game to funnel even further to lead back Devin Neal and QB Daniels. That said, Kansas brought in a deep stable of backs via transfer with Ky Thomas (Minnesota) and Sevion Morrison (Nebraska) who are capable of shouldering some of that load. If either Neal or Daniels pick up most of that vacated volume from Hinshaw it’s possible they both go over this total, but always caution QB rushing as sacks hit negative on that total. If the Frogs’ pass rush is getting to Daniels, it may force that total under 52.5 yards
Kendre Miller has gone full Beast Mode the past two weeks, going 9.3 yards per carry for 139 yards per game, doubt him at your own peril. It’s likely Kansas sports a stronger rush defense than OU or SMU, as the Jayhawks surrender just 116 total rushing yards per game...but they haven’t yet faced Kendre Miller.
Quentin Johnston (TCU): 44.5
Luke Grimm (Kansas): 44.5
Quentin Johnston (TCU): 3.5
Luke Grimm (Kansas): 3.5
These QJ props are downright disrespectful. I do not care that through four games his production has not once surpassed this total, if the defensive pass interference calls he’s drawn would’ve been receptions he would’ve been well over. He may get this on a single play on Saturday or multiple single plays. The skill around QJ has proven itself extremely dangerous and should force the Kansas defense to pull resources away from him towards Savion and Taye and Derius and Gunnar and on and on. In this game, Johnston eats.
Luke Grimm may not match up against the TCU secondary as well physically as Rashee Rice or with as much talent as Marvin Mims, but he will get every chance to outshine those the performance of those two. Already having surpassed this yardage and reception total 3 times on the season, even in what was an otherwise dormant Jayhawk passing attack last week, Grimm will likely be the primary target for Daniels on Saturday.
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