No. 6 Oklahoma will be on a mission to snap the longest losing streak it holds vs. a Big 12 opponent as the Sooners travel to Manhattan, Kansas, to take on the Kansas State Wildcats on Saturday. The Sooners are 4-0 to start the 2021 season, but they've hardly looked like of a College Football Playoff contender, having only beaten their three FBS opponents by a combined 15 points.
Kansas State suffered its first loss against No. 19 Oklahoma State, but has impressive victories against Stanford and Nevada. The Wildcats held the Cowboys scoreless in the second half but just couldn't generate enough points to overcome the difference.
Oklahoma has dominated this series over its 101-year history dating back to the Big Eight Conference. The Sooners hold a 76-21-4 all-time advantage. However, seven of K-State's 21 victories have come in the Big 12 era.
How will Saturday's Big 12 showdown go? Here are storylines to know ahead of kickoff, as well as picks against the spread and straight up.
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Oklahoma vs. Kansas State: Need to know
Secret formula: Kansas State is the only Big 12 team with an active winning streak against the vaunted Sooners. In fact, Oklahoma has not beaten the Wildcats since Chris Klieman took over the program in 2019. Klieman's teams held Oklahoma's rushing attack under four yards per carry in both wins and won the turnover battle by a combined 6-0. Mistake-free football has been a Kansas State hallmark for decades and it's come up big in the past two meetings.
Inconsistent offense: Oklahoma has taken a significant step back on offense, scoring fewer than 28 points in three straight conference games after never falling to those lows in the Lincoln Riley era previously. The 16 points against West Virginia were the fewest for Oklahoma since the 40-6 blowout in the Russell Athletic Bowl by the Clemson Tigers in 2014 -- the loss that led then-coach Bob Stoops to hire Riley as the offensive coordinator.
QB questions: Kansas State quarterback Skylar Thompson led both upset victories over Oklahoma. Unfortunately, Thompson is likely out with a knee injury, leaving a massive question mark behind him. Will Howard and Jaren Lewis split time against Oklahoma State, but the Wildcats struggled to generate offense. The Wildcats have to score to keep up with Oklahoma; they generated 86 points in the two upset victories.
Dynamic Deuce: Kansas State has one of the most versatile running backs in America. Sophomore Deuce Vaughn has rushed for 393 yards, eclipsing the 100-yard mark in all three wins, and caught 10 passes for 102 yards and accumulated six touchdowns. Klieman is a genius at getting Vaughn the ball in space, even as defensive game plans are built around stopping him.
How to watch Oklahoma vs. Kansas State live
Date: Saturday, Oct. 2 | Time: 3:30 p.m. ET
Location: Bill Snyder Family Stadium -- Manhattan, Kansas
TV: Fox | Live stream: fuboTV (Try for free)
Oklahoma vs. Kansas State prediction, picks
Does Kansas State have the offensive firepower to make it three straight vs. Oklahoma? That will be the critical question entering a pivotal game for both sides. The Wildcats have a highly-disciplined team defensively. That should be enough to cause issues for Oklahoma's stumbling offense and keep the game close. But to actually win for the third year in a row, K-State needs to find some answers at quarterback. Prediction: Kansas State (+10.5)
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