Texas A&M and No. 25 Oklahoma State were once conference rivals, each taking up residence in the Big 12 until the Aggies left for the SEC. The two programs have not met one another since 2011, but that will all change on Friday as Texas A&M and Oklahoma State will do battle once again in the 2019 Texas Bowl.
Oklahoma State has won the last four meetings. Who will win this one? Well, if familiarity with the game is a factor, it will be the Aggies. This is Texas A&M’s third appearance in the Texas Bowl, the most of any team. Oklahoma State is playing in the game for the first time.
Who wins this battle of former conference foes? Let’s take a closer look at the matchup and storylines to follow before making some expert picks both straight up and against the spread.
Texas A&M: The Aggies season has been a mixed bag. While 7-5 doesn’t seem like a great record, it’s important to note that those five losses came to Clemson, LSU, Georgia, Alabama and Auburn. Two of those teams are in the College Football Playoff. Three of them were ranked No. 1 by the AP Top 25 when the Aggies played them. All of them are currently in the top 13 of the CFP rankings. So, there isn’t a bad loss in the bunch — well, losing to LSU by 43 wasn’t great. On the other side of the coin, the Aggies don’t have an impressive win to speak of, either. Their best win of the season came against a Mississippi State team that finished 6-6.
Oklahoma State: It’s hard to know how to gauge Oklahoma State’s 2019 season. An 8-4 record and being ranked in the top 25 is nothing to dismiss, but this is also a team that won at least 10 games six times in eight seasons from 2010 to 2017. The Cowboys have gone 15-10 the last two years, and like Texas A&M, don’t have a great win in 2019. Wins against Kansas State and Iowa State are solid, but when going against the Big 12’s best this season (Oklahoma and Baylor), the Cowboys were outscored 79-43. They have a chance to prove their mettle against A&M, but will be doing so without their starting QB Spencer Sanders and leading receiver Tylan Wallace.
Texas Bowl prediction, picks
This pick isn’t so much a reflection of my confidence in Oklahoma State as it is my uncertainty with Texas A&M. The Aggies have just been too inconsistent to get a great read on. They’ve shown flashes of being a team with the potential to compete with the elite in the country, but they’ve also had periods where they appear entirely outmatched. In this matchup, I think the Aggies defense will be able to limit the explosive plays Oklahoma State’s offense lives on, but I don’t trust Kellen Mond enough to build a big lead for the Aggies. So the points seem like the safer play. Pick: Oklahoma State (+7.5)
Who wins the Texas Bowl? And which critical X-factor makes one side of the spread hit hard? Visit SportsLine now to see which side of the spread to back, all from the acclaimed expert who is 15-4 on picks involving these teams.