Prediction, Preview, and Odds
#177 Texas 61 vs.
#178 Baylor -5
Saturday, November 23, 2019 at 3:30pm EST
Written by Chris Kubala

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#177 University of Texas
#178 Baylor University
6-4
9-1
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6-4
5-5
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It’s a clash of teams from the Lone Star State on the college gridiron in a Big 12 tilt of ranked foes. The #19 Texas Longhorns are on the road as they make the in-state trip to face the #13 Baylor Bears Saturday afternoon. Texas was defeated 23-21 on the road by Iowa State last Saturday in their previous contest. Baylor let one slip away as they suffered their first loss of the season, falling 34-31 at home to #10 Oklahoma last Saturday in their previous tilt. The Longhorns own a 76-26-5 edge in the all-time series between the schools and have won the last four meetings. That includes a 23-17 home win in the most recent matchup on October 13, 2018.

Texas Longhorns Looking to Get on Track

Texas has had their struggles this season, especially in close games, which is a major reason they are 6-4 after losing to Iowa State. The Longhorns are 3-3 in games decided by seven points or less after giving up a game-winning field goal on the final play against Iowa State. Texas rallied from a 20-7 deficit after three quarters to take a 21-20 lead with under six minutes to play. The Longhorns allowed the Cyclones to cover 63 yards in nine plays, setting up a game-winning 36-yard field goal as time expired. Texas was outgained 466-327, gave up 26 first downs while picking up 16 and was beaten 32:35 to 27:25 in time of possession. Those numbers far exceeded the fact that the Longhorns forced the game’s lone turnover.

The Longhorns enter this contest 15th in the nation in passing offense as they average 300.6 yards per game through the air this season while the team is 68th in rushing with 161.1 yards per contest. Texas is 11th in the FBS in scoring offense by putting up 39.1 points per game on the year while the team ranks just 99th in scoring defense by allowing 31.5 points per contest. Sam Ehlinger is 243 of 372 passing for 2,914 yards with 27 touchdowns and eight interceptions while ranking third on the team with 428 yards plus five scores on the ground. Casey Thompson is eight of 12 for 84 yards on the season. Keaontay Ingram leads the Longhorns on the ground with 122 carries for 642 yards plus six scores on the season. Roschon Johnson is next in line with 90 carries for 473 yards plus four rushing touchdowns. Devin Duvernay leads the team with 87 receptions for 1,017 yards and seven scores on the year. Collin Johnson (35 catches, 497 yards, two TD), Brennan Eagles (25 receptions, 472 yards, six TD) and Jake Smith (20 grabs, 207 yards, five TD) are solid secondary targets. Cameron Dicker has hit all 45 extra point attempts and 12 of 16 field goal tries with a long of 57 this season.

Baylor Bears Try to Regroup From First Loss

Baylor had everything going early against Oklahoma and seemed poised to run their mark to 10-0 on the year. Then things fell apart for the Bears as they were held scoreless in the second half and took the loss as they gave up the winning field goal with 1:45 to play. Baylor led 28-3 with 11:02 to play in the first half and 31-10 at halftime. The Bears led 31-17 after three quarters before getting outscored 17-0 in the fourth to take the loss. Baylor was outgained 525-307, allowed 34 first downs while picking up 18 and was dominated in time of possession by a 41:11 to 18:49 margin. The Bears did force three turnovers while committing two in the contest but a worn-out defense couldn’t make the plays late.

The Bears enter this contest 38th in the nation in passing offense with 263.6 yards per game and 44th in rushing as they average 180.7 yards per contest on the ground. Baylor stands 26th in the FBS in scoring offense with an average of 34.9 points per game while they are 24th in scoring defense by allowing only 20.5 points per contest. Charlie Brewer is 195 of 292 passing for 2,532 yards with 18 touchdowns and five interceptions while adding 276 yards plus nine scores on the ground. Gerry Bohanon is 10 of 15 for 104 yards and a score plus 194 yards and two touchdowns on the ground. John Lovett is the team’s leading ground gainer with 86 carries for 537 yards plus four scores. JaMycal Hasty (82 carries, 503 yards, four TD) and Trestan Ebner (35 carries, 162 yards, two TD) are solid options in the ground game. In the aerial attack, Denzel Mims leads the team with 50 grabs for 767 yards plus 10 touchdowns this season. Tyquan Thornton (35 receptions, 613 yards, three TD), R.J. Sneed (34 catches, 386 yards, three TD) and Chris Platt (19 grabs, 209 yards, TD) are solid options as well. John Mayers has hit all 39 extra points and 10 of 13 field goals with a long of 51 this season. Noah Rauschenberg is four of four on extra points and missed his lone field goal try.

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Baylor can only lament the missed opportunity they had to run their mark to 10-0 on the year as they let the game against Oklahoma slip through their fingers. The Bears likely will get another shot at the Sooners in the Big 12 title game but they’d like to get back on track here. Texas has been hurt by the pass this season, giving up 305 yards per game and 21 scores through the air in their 10 games. That fits right into Baylor’s wheelhouse as Brewer is capable of doing damage with his arm. The Bears’ defense has recorded 21 takeaways on the season, including 11 picks. Look for Baylor’s defense to set up the offense with a couple of short fields, which helps the Bears come up with the win here.

Prediction: Baylor Bears -5.5

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The 21 points that Texas put on the board last week against Iowa State was a season-low for them. Offense hasn't been the problem for Tom Herman's group this year. Defensively, the Longhorns have broken far too often as they've given up at least 23 points eight times this season. That could be trouble against a Baylor offense that has scored at least 21 points in nine of 10 games and has five games with at least 31 on the board. Will the Longhorns' defense be in for another long day on the road in Waco here?

The under is 8-2 in the Longhorns' last 10 games after accumulating less than 100 yards rushing in their previous game, 14-4 in their last 18 games on grass and 23-8 in their last 31 in November. Baylor has seen the under go 5-1 in their last 6 games in November, 4-1 in their last 5 games following an ATS win and 4-1 in their last 5 games after allowing more than 200 yards rushing in their previous game. The under is 6-0 in the last six meetings: look for this one to end up a few points short as it should only take 27 to 30 points to prevail here.

Prediction: Under 59
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Written By Chris Kubala

Christopher Kubala has been crunching stats and following sports for over 30 years. His in-depth analysis and passion for sports have led him to writing books about sports, regularly being featured on sports talk radio and as the go-to person for any obscure trivia. Now he is writing for our team here at Winners @ Whiners. Chris keeps an eye on transactions and statistics like a hawk, especially when it comes to football, both the NFL and college. He is also very knowledgeable in the NHL, the NBA, college basketball and MLB. If you want consistency, then be sure and check out Chris’ content daily.