College Football Playoff Preview: Oklahoma

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Even though there are no Boston teams involved, the Boston Sports Syndicate is still heavy into the College Football Playoff.  Three members of our writing staff, plus a special guest, each took a team and gives you a breakdown of their chances to win it all.  In the first article in the series, the Syndicate's Fantasy Writer Ryan Besse gives you his take on the #4 seed Oklahoma Sooners.

Photo courtesy of reviewjournal.com
One thing that I believe is that the College Football Playoff Committee got it right this year. With that said, I still think an 8 team playoff would be better for the sport and for the fans. Why would you not want the chance to see Georgia square off against Notre Dame? Or Oklahoma battle it out with Ohio State to prove who truly would belongs in that top 4? Or even finally get a chance to let UCF in and prove their worth. I for one would be 110 percent on board, but for now, we are stuck with the 4. A pretty damn good 4 at that.

Oklahoma deservingly got the fourth and final Playoff seed, avenging their only loss of the year by beating Texas in a rematch in the Big 12 Championship game (horns down). That win sets us up with a dream quarterback matchup. Alabama lead by Tua Tagovailoa who was the Heisman front runner for most of the year, against Kyler Murray who turned it on late and solidified himself as the Heisman winner in that Big 12 championship game. This 1-4 matchup may be the most compelling of all the bowl games we will see this season.

The first thing that you have to evaluate when looking at Oklahoma, is of course Kyler Murray himself. The awe-inspiring two sport athlete, almost sure to go pro in baseball, and Heisman Trophy winner. What makes Murray's performances so impressive is he stands just a mere 5'11", which is being a little generous. His height, or lack thereof, does not hold him back as he threw for over 4,000 yards, rushing for another 892 more and a total of 51 touchdowns. Murray will beat you with his arm and his legs as he leads an offense that averages nearly 50 points a game.

As good as Murray and this Oklahoma offense is, the defense is bad. Actually, this defense is down right putrid. Head coach Lincoln Riley fired Defensive Coordinator Mike Stoops back in October which lead to zero positive results. Oklahoma now heads into their Orange Bowl matchup against Alabama with statistically the worst defense in the College Football Playoff history. Oklahoma gives up nearly 450 yards to their opponents and allows over 6 yards per play! Beyond that, the Sooner's defense has only 11 takeaways all season long. They have had games where they have given up 45, 46, 47 and 56 points!

Heisman winner at the helm or not, if Oklahoma faces a Tua who is even just at 80 percent healthy (ankle), they will be heading home just as soon as they get to South Florida. The Oklahoma defense will be the story of this game. Can they find a way, anyway at all to get a couple of stops to keep Murray within striking distance? And if they do, Murray may have enough magic left to make this game very interesting.

It is the holiday season and a miracle is possible, but this Oklahoma team has had all season to fix their defense and they have not yet, so to believe they will now is a stretch. I love what Kyler Murray has done, and I was pleased to see them make the CFP, but in the end, I think the defending National Champions will be too much for the Sooners. Alabama 45-31.


Follow Ryan on Twitter and ask your Fantasy Questions @BesseBoy. 

Questions, comments, or ideas for the weekly podcast? Use @BostonSportsSYN.

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Boston Sports Syndicate: College Football Playoff Preview: Oklahoma
College Football Playoff Preview: Oklahoma
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