College Football Pick
Baylor is undefeated, but is still an afterthought in playoff discussions. The main reason being that Baylor’s next six Games are probably the hardest of its season. Texas may have a losing record, but won’t go down easy at home. The Bears opened as just -3 point favorites.
It’s hard to give last year’s meeting between these teams much thought when looking at this matchup. While Texas won 23-17 in Waco, the Bears were forced to use Lynx Hawthorne for the majority of the Game at quarterback. He was their Fourth-string QB when the season began.
This year, Baylor has gotten off to another good start with the help of Seth Russell at quarterback. Of course, their best win in the first seven Games came against a mediocre Oklahoma State team. The Bears even had trouble winning at Iowa State a couple weeks ago.
Texas may have Four losses, but all of those opponents were arguably tougher than anything Baylor has faced yet. Three of the Longhorns losses have come on the road, while their other loss was to Oklahoma at a neutral site. That may be reason enough to back the home team in this one.
Then again, the Longhorns still have a bad defense, despite playing better in recent weeks. This Baylor offense is similar to previous ones that has put up 40-plus points on the ‘Horns.
The Bears remain run-first, but Seth Russell has done what’s been asked of him, tossing 16 touchdowns to only Four interceptions for the season. His 57.1% completion rate is a bit troubling, but his mobility takes away some of those faults. In the running Game, Shock Linwood and Terence Williams have gotten the job done, both averaging more than 5.5 yards per carry. Baylor’s offense maybe hasn’t been as dynamic as past years, but they should be able to Scoreplenty against this defense.
But that could also be the case on the other end of the field. In their last road Game, Baylor gave up 42 points to Iowa State, which is cause for concern.
While the Longhorns haven’t been all that consistent on the offensive end, they’ve at least been able to keep up with every opponent. Shane Buechele has similar numbers to Russell at quarterback, now with 15 TDs and 5 INTs, but completing more of his passes. The main difference is that the Texas ground Game hasn’t been as good. Most of that issue is because Chris Warren has missed the last three Games due to injury. D’Onta Freeman has been great, though, reaching 120-plus yards in every Game he’s played, but the one-two punch with Warren gave this offense another piece.
Baylor may be ranked No. 8, but this Game has all the makings of a back-and-forth battle. If the Longhorns can build off their home crowd, they could easily come out on top by the end of it.
The Bears are 1-4 ATS in their last five road Games and 4-9 ATS in their last 13 overall. The Longhorns are 6-1 ATS in their last seven home Games and 5-2 ATS in their last seven following a straight-up loss.
Our Pick – Having played a considerably more difficult Schedule should work on the Longhorns favor here. Texas +3