The college football season has come down to this: Oklahoma versus Alabama in the Orange Bowl in a College Football Playoff semifinal, with the winner facing either Clemson or Notre Dame on Jan. 7 in Santa Clara, California, for the national championship. Oklahoma quarterback and Heisman Trophy winner Kyler Murray is a center of attention going into the semis and BetDSI Sportsbook has set a prop on how many touchdowns he’ll produce in the College Football Playoff:
Of course, if you’re betting the over, you’re hoping that Oklahoma finds a way through Alabama and plays in two games instead of one. This prop encompasses the entire CFP and not just his performance in the semifinal.
Related: College Football Betting
Kyler Murray’s 2018 Regular Season
Murray won the Heisman because, unlike his opposite number in the Orange Bowl – Alabama quarterback Tua Tagovailoa – Murray had to play in the fourth quarters of games and produce for his team. He needed to score the game-winning or game-sealing touchdowns for Oklahoma late in contests which were extremely close. Tagovailoa and Alabama did not have to do that. Murray performed a lot more work than Tagovailoa did, and he did so under immense pressure. He won an overtime game against Army. He won a 48-47 game with a late score against Oklahoma State. He produced touchdowns and a late fourth-down conversion to help OU outlast West Virginia on the road, 59-56. He authored a late touchdown drive to finish off Texas in the Big 12 Championship Game, 39-27.
The final numbers during the regular season for Murray: 71 percent completions, 4,053 passing yards, 40 passing touchdowns against just seven interceptions, 892 rushing yards, and 11 more touchdowns as a runner. The overall number of combined passing and rushing touchdowns: 51. Murray played 13 games, meaning that he averaged just under four touchdowns per game this regular season.
The Matchup Against Alabama’s Defense
The Alabama defense had a very good season. It shut out LSU and Mississippi State. It contained Texas A&M and Auburn and dominated Ole Miss and Louisville. However, this was not a great defense, hardly one of the very best units coach Nick Saban has fielded during his tenure in Tuscaloosa. Alabama allowed 31 points to Arkansas. It allowed 28 points in two and a half quarters to Georgia in the SEC Championship Game. Georgia has elite athletes, and the Bulldogs showed that this defense is hardly invincible. Oklahoma has a strong offensive line and will feel confident in its ability to give Murray ample protection against Alabama’s defensive front. If that happens in the Orange Bowl, Murray should be able to put up huge numbers.
The Projection On Total Touchdowns Murray Will Score If Oklahoma Plays Clemson or Notre Dame
If Oklahoma beats Alabama and faces Clemson or Notre Dame for the national title, Murray should score a bunch of additional touchdowns. Clemson would be the much tougher matchup, but even then, Oklahoma probably won’t get shut down, and Murray can add at least two touchdowns to his ledger sheet. Against Notre Dame, Murray might be able to score four or five, since the Sooners are so much faster than Notre Dame on the edges of the field. OU’s speed is matched by Clemson, but not by Notre Dame. All in all, Murray should get his share of touchdowns against anyone he plays. The ball needs to be in his hands for Oklahoma to score. More precisely, OU will probably need to hit big plays to have a real chance in the playoff. This means that one-yard touchdown runs by running backs – the very thing which might limit Murray’s number of touchdowns scored – probably won’t happen often enough to rob Murray of big stats and fat numbers.
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