[tps_header]Week 7 in the Big 12 is setting up to be separation Saturday. Oklahoma State is on a bye week, and TCU and Baylor look to add to their stranglehold on the rest of the competition. Oklahoma looks to stay alive in the conference, but has Bill Snyder standing in their peripherals like the terrifying ‘Thin Man’ of legend. All while Texas Tech, West Virginia, and Kansas State hope, fight, and claw for a solid season.[/tps_header]
West Virginia at Baylor
TV: Fox / Fox Sports Go
KICKOFF: 11:00 am CST
The Mountaineers travel deep into the heart of Texas this week with aspirations of knocking Baylor down a peg. However the Bears, and head coach Art Briles, haven’t forgotten last year’s let down in Morgantown. Especially since it ultimately kept Baylor, and the conference, out of the inaugural College Football Playoff. This is an early kickoff that you don’t want to miss!
The Bears have yet to be challenged, and WVU looks to be their first true test, although the Mountaineers don’t look nearly as good as they did two weeks ago. Since looking like a surprise dark horse to win the conference, they’ve suffered back-to-back losses.
Obviously things aren’t going to get any easier this week for WVU. The Bears are a machine. Quarterback Seth Russell continues to increase Bears’ fans amnesia of anything Bryce Petty, passing for 1,527 yards, 22 touchdowns while only throwing five picks. Shock Linwood and the Baylor running game is the true strength in the Bear’s spread attack. Linwood has totaled 719 rushing yards and seven touchdowns while averaging an insane 9.6 yards per carry. For the Mountaineers to have any success, their first instinct should be trying to contain the run and hope their secondary can hold their own – a tall task indeed.
An element that could make this game very interesting is the WVU rushing attack. Wendell Smallwood has put together a solid effort the last two weeks rushing for 147 yards and a TD against OSU and 111 yards against the Sooners. Baylor has had trouble stopping the run and getting their offense back on the field. For Baylor to achieve their goals, their defense must stop the run. West Virginia will be a great test.