College Football Betting: Kansas State at West Virginia

College Football Betting:  Kansas State at West Virginia

Excellent matchup in the Big 12 on Saturday as Kansas State heads East to take on West Virginia. The Mountaineers were lucky to escape with a win over BYU last weekend but were able to maintain a 3-0 SU record. This is the conference opener for both teams but not a matchup of undefeated teams as the Wildcats lost 26-13 to Stanford in their opening game. K-State has mopped up the field against inferior competition since beating Florida Atlantic and SW Missouri State by a combined score of 98-7. Even so, they’re just 1-2 against the spread while the Mountaineers are 1-1-1 ATS. Both teams play Texas Tech in their next game–Kansas State has them at home next week while the Mountaineers have a bye week before a road game against the Red Raiders.

Historical matchups are sometimes overrated in sports betting but it seems to be very salient in this matchup. Kansas State and West Virginia have played four times since the Mountaineers joined the Big 12. The results of those games? 4 Wildcat victories straight up and against the spread. Kansas State was the underdog in three of the four games and while the last two have been close straight up the Wildcats have been dominant against the spread. Kansas State won 24-23 at home last year as a +6.5 underdog and won on the road in 2014 26-20 as +2.5 underdogs. In the four games, they’ve covered the spread by a combined 70 points.

In our view, the reason that Kansas State has been so successful against West Virginia was evident last week as the Mountaineers struggled against BYU. The Wildcats do all of the little things ‘right’ and don’t beat themselves. In other words, they’re mentally tough and fundamentally as sound as any program in the country. West Virginia, meanwhile, has a tendency to get careless. A ‘bigger’ issue is the size and physicality of these teams–and particularly on defense. West Virginia has some speed and talent on defense but lack K-State’s size and toughness. The earlier loss by the Wildcats could end up being the best thing to happen to them and quickly got them into midseason focus. Bill Snyder against Dana Holgorson is a coaching mismatch and we’re getting the better coach and better team getting points.