The Houston Cougars are 7-7 straight up and 12-1-1 against the spread in their last 14 games as a betting underdog. The Cougars will try to start the 2016 college football season off with a big upset when they take on the Oklahoma Sooners at NRG Stadium this Saturday.
Houston is an 11.5-point underdog for Saturday afternoon's matchup at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com. In the team's last game as a double-digit underdog, Houston won outright, beating Louisville 34-31 as a 13.5-point underdog.
After going a disappointing 21-12 SU in three seasons under head coach Tony Levine, the Cougars surged back into national relevance last season in Tom Herman's first season as head coach.
Houston fell one win short of an undefeated season in 2015 with a 13-1 SU and 9-5 ATS campaign, boasting one of the best offenses in the nation averaging 40.4 points per game on offense. Greg Ward Jr. was the only quarterback in the nation besides Deshaun Watson last season to pass for at least 2,000 yards while also rushing for at least 1,000.
The Cougars won their final game of 2015 with a 38-24 win in the Peach Bowl as a 7.5-point underdog against the Florida State Seminoles. Houston is 7-0 SU in its last seven games after winning as an underdog in its previous game, per the OddsShark College Football Database.
Betting Line / Total: Oklahoma -11.5 / 68 Points
Trend: Houston is 12-1-1 ATS in its last 14 games as an underdog.
Trend: The total has gone OVER in six of Oklahoma's last eight games.
Squaring off against Ward Jr. and the Cougars offense, Oklahoma's defense will be put to the test right out of the gate on Saturday. If the defense isn't up to the task, Oklahoma's offense should be comfortable shooting out against the Cougars.
The Sooners were one of 12 teams with a more productive offense than Houston in 2015, scoring 43.5 points per game last season. Oklahoma finished the season on a 7-1 SU and 6-2 ATS run, losing its final game in the playoff against Clemson.
Saturday's total is set at 68 points. The OVER is 6-2 in Oklahoma's last eight games.
If Oklahoma's defense is able to slow down the Cougars on offense, the Sooners should come away with a comfortable victory in this game. But if this game turns into a shootout, Houston has the firepower to hang around and give Oklahoma a scare.
Oklahoma Sooners vs. Houston Cougars
When: Saturday, September 3, 12:00 p.m. ET
Where: NRG Stadium, Houston, Texas