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Oklahoma vs. LSU: Odds and Score Prediction for Peach Bowl 2019

Joe Tansey@JTansey90Featured ColumnistDecember 28, 2019

LSU quarterback Joe Burrow (9) wams up before the first half of the Southeastern Conference championship NCAA college football game between LSU and Georgia, Saturday, Dec. 7, 2019, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)
John Bazemore/Associated Press

The LSU Tigers are expected to earn their sixth Top 25 victory by a large margin in the Peach Bowl.

The No. 1 seed in the College Football Playoff has been a double-digit favorite over the Oklahoma Sooners since the matchup was announced December 8. However, only two of the five ranked wins produced by Ed Orgeron's side have been by 10 or more points, and five of the past six Oklahoma contests have been decided by one possession.

Heisman Trophy winner Joe Burrow and Heisman finalist Jalen Hurts are also expected to produce significant totals, as the over/under has been over 70 points for 20 days.

                      

Peach Bowl Odds

Spread: LSU (-13.5)

Over/Under: 76

Moneyline: LSU -550 (bet $550 to win $100); Oklahoma +425 (bet $100 to win $425)

Odds via Caesars.

               

All but one of the No. 1-No. 4 matchups in the playoff era have been determined by more than 10 points.

A year ago, the Sooners were beaten by 11 in the Orange Bowl by the Alabama Crimson Tide.

Additionally, three of the past four losers of this matchup were held to single digits by the victorious side. If that trend continues, LSU could be in good shape to cover the 13.5-point spread, but the over could be in doubt.

Since defeating Alabama November 9, the SEC champion has earned four straight 20-plus-point victories and scored 50 in three of them.

The significant difference between the SEC Championship Game, the SEC West finale and the rest of November is the 17 points conceded by the Tigers. In a three-game stretch from November 9-23, LSU gave up 98 points.

LSU's rushing defense stood out against the Georgia Bulldogs, as they held the SEC East champion to 61 ground yards. Derek Stingley Jr. also picked off a pair of Jake Fromm's passes, which added to the Bulldogs' offensive inefficiency.

If similar totals are produced Saturday, LSU would take away one half of Hurts' skill set. He leads the Sooners with 1,255 rushing yards and 18 ground scores.

The senior transfer from Alabama has been picked off in four of his past five outings, and he suffered at least three sacks on four occasions in that span. Even if one turnover happens, the over could be in doubt because of how large the total is.

If Hurts remains clean in the pocket and threatens LSU with his legs, the Sooners may be able to keep pace and cover, even if they lose.

But playoff semifinal history suggests the under is the best bet, as only two semifinals in the past four years have eclipsed 75 points, one of which went to double overtime.

                   

Score Prediction

LSU 48, Oklahoma 34

LSU put up at least 35 points in four of its five meetings with Top 25 foes.

Since scoring a season-low 23 versus the Auburn Tigers, Burrow has five straight 300-yard performances and 18 passing touchdowns. The only thing that could hamper Burrow's production is the health of running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire, who is dealing with a hamstring injury.

Orgeron said Friday that he believes Edwards-Helaire will play, but he was not sure in what capacity, per The Athletic's Brody Miller.

Even without the running back at full strength, Burrow still has Ja'Marr Chase, Justin Jefferson and Terrace Marshall Jr. to work with in the passing game.

Chase and Jefferson both have over 1,200 receiving yards and combined for 32 scoring catches. They are facing an Oklahoma defense that allows 198.5 passing yards per contest and 6.7 yards per reception.

Hurts may be able to challenge Burrow's numbers for some time, but he doesn't own the same depth in weapons that his counterpart does. If LSU's secondary takes away 1,208-yard receiver CeeDee Lamb, the Tigers could force short possessions that help them open up an advantage on the scoreboard.

                                       

Follow Joe on Twitter, @JTansey90Statistics obtained from ESPN.com.