Sooners Big 12 favorites with Hurts at helm

Field Level Media

August 19, 2019 at 7:45 pm.

Oklahoma Sooners coach Lincoln Riley went with experience in choosing Jalen Hurts as his starting quarterback on Monday, and the Alabama transfer will lead a team heavily favored to win the Big 12.

DraftKings is offering Oklahoma at -167 to win the conference title, with the Texas Longhorns the next lowest bet at +450, followed by Iowa State at +800 and Baylor and Oklahoma at +1400.

DraftKings has set Oklahoma’s over/under season win total at 10.5, with a +200 moneyline on the Sooners reaching the College Football Playoffs. PointsBet lists Oklahoma at +245 to reach the CFP and -345 to miss out.

However, Riley’s team remains a distinct underdog to win the CFP. DraftKings is offering the Clemson Tigers at +175, followed by Alabama (+250), Georgia (+900), Michigan (+1400), Ohio State (+1400) and then Oklahoma (+1600). PointsBet has the top three in the same order, followed by Ohio State (+1400) and then Michigan and Oklahoma at +1500.

Hurts, who went 26-2 in two seasons as a starter for Alabama before losing the job to Tua Tagovailoa, beat out redshirt freshman Tanner Mordecai and true freshman Spencer Rattler.

Hurts passed for 5,626 yards and 48 touchdowns against just 12 interceptions for the Crimson Tide from 2016-18. He rushed for 1,976 yards and 23 scores.

Hurts has big shoes to fill at Oklahoma as the last two quarterbacks — Baker Mayfield and Kyler Murray — both won the Heisman Trophy in Riley’s up-tempo offense.

Hurts’ odds to run the streak to three straight Heisman Trophy winners have been set at +1400 by PointsBet, making him the fourth betting favorite along with new Ohio State quarterback Justin Fields behind Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence (+225), Tagovailoa (+250) and Nebraska quarterback Adrian Martinez (+1200).

The No. 4 Sooners open the season at home against Houston on Sept. 1.