Prediction, Preview, and Odds
#153 Baylor vs.
#154 Kansas
Saturday, September 18, 2021 at 3:30pm EDT
Written by Nick Raffoul

The Baylor Bears will travel to David Booth Memorial Stadium in Lawrence, Kansas for a Big 12 Conference showdown against the Kansas Jayhawks.

This will serve as the Big 12 opener for both teams. Baylor enters the week with a 2-0 record after in-state battles versus Texas State and Texas Southern. Meanwhile, Kansas is coming off of a hard-fought loss on the road against No. 17-ranked Coastal Carolina. The Jayhawks come in with a 1-1 overall record through two games after defeating South Dakota in the season opener.

Can the Jayhawks pull off the upset at home against Baylor in their first Big 12 Conference game of the year on Saturday afternoon?

Bears looking to build off blowout win vs. Texas Southern

Baylor trounced Texas Southern 66-7 in a blowout victory last weekend to remain undefeated through two games. Quarterback Gerry Bohanon completed 17 of 23 passes for 247 yards with three touchdowns while Abram Smith rushed for 126 yards and two touchdowns in the win. Baylor scored touchdowns on its first seven offensive possessions and led 59-0 before taking its foot off of the gas pedal in the fourth quarter.

Bohanon has been a leader early in his junior season. The 6-foot-3 signal-caller has thrown for 395 yards with three touchdowns and no interceptions while completing a healthy 68.1 percent of his passes through two games. Bohanon leads a Bears offense that comes in scoring a whopping 47.5 points per game. While he doesn’t have a score yet, senior running back Trestan Ebner leads Baylor in rushing with 245 yards and 8.2 yards per carry. Meanwhile, Tyquan Thorton leads the Bears offense in receiving with 10 catches for 149 yards and two touchdowns.

On defense, Baylor comes into the weekend allowing just 13.5 points per game and 258 yards of total offense per contest.

Bean plays well in loss versus Coastal Carolina

Despite remaining competitive for most of the contest, Kansas was unable to keep up with No. 17-ranked Coastal Carolina last week, losing on the road 49-22. Quarterback Jason Bean completed 12 of 23 passes for 189 yards and rushed for 102 yards and two touchdowns to help the Jayhawks keep the chains moving in the loss. Kansas actually led 9-7 at the end of the first quarter and closed the gap to 28-22 in the third before allowing the Chanticleers to rile off 21 unanswered points to finish off the contest.

While Bean is still growing as a passer, the 6-foot-3 North Texas transfer has been a revelation in Lawrence so far this year. He has already rushed for 156 yards and accounted for four touchdowns in 2021, giving the Jayhawks new life on offense. Bean has flashed his talent under center already this year, making electric plays, like this 46-yard touchdown run against Coastal Carolina. He also tossed a late touchdown in the team’s season-opening win versus South Dakota. Despite his best efforts, the junior quarterback leads an offense that comes in averaging just 19.5 points per game so far this season.

On defense, Kansas has surrendered 31.5 points per game and 361.5 yards of total offense per contest. The Jayhawks have been particularly vulnerable on the ground, allowing 190 rushing yards per game, which ranks 98th in the FBS.

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Full-Game Side Bet

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Baylor has had its fair share of blowout wins in this series but things could be different in Lawrence this time around. According to Jayhawks’ head coach Lance Leipold, Bean is expected to play this week after briefly coming out of last week’s game with a wrist injury. That’s good news for Kansas, which has flashed improvement on offense through two games. Perhaps most importantly, Kansas has done a good job of taking care of the football and enters this game as one of nine FBS teams that have not turned the ball over yet this year. Meanwhile, the Bears’ offense didn’t look nearly as potent in their first road game of the season at Texas State. Take Kansas to cover the spread at home in this matchup on Saturday afternoon.

Prediction: Kansas Jayhawks +18

Full-Game Total Pick

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It’s hard not to like the over in this game. Baylor has scored at least 29 points in each of its first two games and the Bears are fresh off of laying 66 points on the scoreboard against Texas Southern. The Bears excel at running the football and are averaging 7.5 yards per rush, which ranks fourth nationally. Meanwhile, Kansas has struggled to stop the run, giving up 190 rushing yards per game. The Jayhawks have also proven to be better than expected on offense this season. Last week, they moved the ball down the field and scored 22 points against Coastal Carolina, a top-25 team. Take this game to go over the projected total on Saturday.

Prediction: Over 49.5
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Written By Nick Raffoul , "Nick Raffoul"

Shortly after graduating with an Honors in Business Administration, Nick turned his attention from traditional stocks and bonds to investing in the performance of sports teams. He has been a very successful sports bettor over the years and has now brought his talents to us here at Winners & Whiners. Nick uses a combination of advanced stats and historical data to create sports investment models to identify value and generate consistent profits. Let Nick win for you.