Rice @ Texas
Rice +35½ -108 over Texas

Posted at 8:15 AM EST. Odds subject to change.

Pinnacle +35½ -108  BET365 +35½ -110 Sportsinteraction +35½ -110 888Sport +35½ -110

Rice +35½ over Texas

Darrell K. Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium – Austin, TX

Streaming: ABC

3:30 PM EST. Every year is Texas’ year, at least that's what the media spurts out and this year is no different. Actually, it’s a little different because for the first time in a long time, the Big 12 looks to be Texas’ for the taking and after leaving quite an impression last year when it hosted Alabama in Austin to only fall by a point, Texas has been tabbed to not only win the conference but also appear in the College Football Playoff. With Steve Sarkisian (Coach Sark) entering his third year as head coach, with a #11 ranking to kick off the campaign, with an influx of talent from the talent portal, with a top-three recruiting cycle, and a stand-out quarterback in Quinn Ewers back healthy and manning the offense, sky seems to be the limit for the Burnt Orange and the market cannot get enough of it. Without trying to sound redundant, one will pay a significant premium to back the Longhorns here.

Enter Rice, a team that we need not characterize any further than a “tune-up” opponent. Very simply, the Owls have been given the assignment to travel to Austin to get clobbered. That may come to fruition and Rice may indeed lose by 100 but this is not a good spot for the Longhorns and Rice might be a lot better than this line suggests.

Back to that aforementioned terrible spot for Texas. You see, next week Texas is heading to Tuscaloosa, Alabama for the conclusion to the home-home series with the Crimson Tide in one of the most anticipated showdowns in the early weeks of college football. Given how close Texas came to knocking off Alabama last year and being granted another crack at Saban and company, does one really think Texas will even be batting an eye at Rice? The Longhorns will be looking to get this game over and done with against a cupcake that they have creamed on a regular basis.

If you do a Google Image search for JT Daniels, you'll see the quarterback in jerseys from all across the country. Over the last five years, he has bounced from USC to Georgia to West Virginia, and has now landed at Rice. Can he help push the Owls to the next level, or is he destined to be a college football hitch-hiker? Rice started the season with a horrific 66-14 loss to USC, but Mike Bloomgren did a great job of keeping the ship afloat. They qualified for a rare bowl game and Bloomgren should have the necessary pieces to keep this program moving forward. The Owls return 15 starters, plus the addition of Daniels at quarterback.

We’ll close with some more influential but meaningless trends. Texas has won each of the last 15 meetings in this series while going 10-4-1 against the spread. The Longhorns captured the last meeting 58-0 in 2021 while holding a 620-272 edge in total yards. As much as Coach Sark would like to open things up and put together a repeat performance of that day, the Longhorns have Alabama on deck. We'll see how much of the playbook Coach Sark is willing to show Nick Saban. Should Texas get out to a huge lead, there is no question that the starters will be pulled early in preparation for next week’s marquee match-up, which also presents an opportunity for a backdoor cover. There are multiple ways for Rice to cash here and we’re all over it.


Our Pick

Rice +35½ -108 (Risking 2.16 units - To Win: 2.00)