Baylor is coming off a big road win versus Kansas State and improved to 5-0 on the year. The Bears are looking to remain undefeated as they welcome Texas Tech to Waco. Baylor and Texas Tech are knotted up all-time at 38-38-1, and the winner of this game will become the overall leader of the series. Last year Baylor won the matchup and that win propelled them to the Texas Bowl where they got a win over Vanderbilt.
Texas Tech has already had an up-and-down season. The Red Raiders started off hot before losing starting quarterback Alan Bowman in a loss to Arizona before getting outclassed by Oklahoma. However, Texas Tech bounced back nicely by completely routing Oklahoma State 45-35 and the game wasn’t even that close. Backup quarterback Jeff Duffey threw for 424 yards and four touchdowns in the win. The real story of the game though, was the Red Raider defense that accounted for five turnovers by the Cowboys.
Baylor, on the other hand, has done everything it was supposed to do so far this season. The Bears started 3-0 against weaker opponents. Then they upset Iowa State who were favored over the Bears before going on the road and defeating another conference opponent as the underdog. For the first time in conference play, Baylor will be favored it will be interesting to see how these Bears handle that. Baylor also made their debut appearance in Coaches Poll at 23, and the AP Top 25 at 22.
Saturday will be a matchup of defenses that have been playing good football recently, and it will go along way of telling everyone if either team is legit. Whoever comes out on top will definitely have momentum as they head into the meat of their conference schedule.
- When: Sat, Oct 12, 3:00 PM CT
- Where: McLane Stadium, Waco, TX
- Forecast: Mostly Sunny, High of 68°F
- Stream: Fox Sports Go
- Betting Line: BAY -11, O/U 58
Texas Tech Red Raiders
Texas Tech pulled off an upset last week that not many people saw coming. The Red Raiders knocked off then 21st-ranked Oklahoma State in a 45-35 win that wasn’t as close as the score indicates. The Red Raiders now sit at 3-2, and with the performance last week there is reason for hope this week against another top-25 opponent.
When Bowman was ruled out for several weeks after the Arizona game, the season seemed lost. However, Jett Duffey seems to have found comfort in Yost’s offense after he exploded last week for 424 yards through the air and five total touchdowns. He looked comfortable and showed he can take care of the football in big games.
T.J. Vasher continues to separate himself as Tech’s number one receiver. While his 24 receptions for 358 yards isn’t eye popping, his highlight reel says other wise. Vasher has been Mr. Clutch for the Red Raiders making big time catches in traffic. Just last week he caught a touchdown pass in double coverage, and although the pass was about as perfect as it could have been from Duffey, Vasher still made a the play by coming down with it.
With the Big 12’s leading tackler in Jordyn Brooks and Big 12 interception leader Douglas Coleman III on the other side of the ball, the Red Raiders showed they can slow down explosive offenses. Kieth Patterson’s new look defense worked as it should have last week getting turnovers by pressuring the quarterback and it will need to do that once again against Charlie Brewer. Brewer hasn’t thrown an interception this year and with his weapons on the outside he can hurt an injury riddled Tech secondary.
Texas Tech Keys to the Game
Control the Line of Scrimmage: The Red Raiders are facing DT James Lynch who is second in sacks in the Big 12 and third in tackles for loss without starting RG Jack Anderson who is out for the season. Tech will need their young offensive lineman to step up and protect Duffey as well as establish the run so the workload isn’t all on the quarterback’s shoulders.
Disrupt Charlie Brewer: As mentioned earlier, Brewer hasn’t thrown an interception yet and when given time, he can hurt you. The Red Raiders have to get pressure and force inaccurate throws against a team who can be explosive and really push the ball downfield.
Get Ahead Early: Tech’s ability to play from behind is still in question as they have lost both games they have trailed in. Baylor can manage the clock with the run game if they get ahead and make it difficult for a defense that has some young players on the field this week.
David’s Game Prediction
Texas Tech is coming off an emotional roller coaster. Look for the defense to get some pressure on Brewer and force his first interception. Jett Duffey should build off his performance last week and will have to make some plays with his feet as the Bears try to pressure him into bad decisions. The Red Raiders pull off the upset again on their first trip back to Waco in a game that’s surprisingly low scoring.
22 Baylor Bears
By Matt Workman
After the non-conference slate, questions still remained for the untested Bears. However, following two tough matchups to start conference play Baylor seems to have passed those tests.
They defeated Iowa State on a last-minute field goal after having been up 20-0 in the fourth quarter. Against Kansas State, it was a slow methodical win that wore the Wildcats down to come out on top 31-12.
Offensively, Baylor has yet to play its best game in conference leaning on its defense to make stops and keep them in games. Against more high powered offenses both sides of the ball will have to step up and produce. Texas Tech provides a challenge to Baylor that its previous opponents did not. Both Iowa State and Kansas State like to pound you into submission but future teams will have more speed and are content with forcing you into shootouts.
Can Baylor win those types of games? Is this defense for real and able to force offenses to play their style of game. These are questions that are going to be answered in the upcoming weeks and that starts this week with Texas Tech. Jett Duffey has shown flashes of the talent that he has and the Baylor defense is going to have to keep him in check and avoid giving up big plays.
Offensively Baylor is going to have to lean on junior quarterback Charlie Brewer. Brewer has shown he is capable to lead this team to victories and that his dynamic playmaking ability is still there. But the question remains how healthy he is after being knocked out of last weeks game. If for whatever reason Brewer is not able to go the reigns will be passed to a redshirt freshman in Gerry Bohannon.
Baylor Keys To The Game
Contain Duffey: Baylor cannot have a repeat of last week and perform like Oklahoma State. The defense has to do what they did in the first three quarters against Iowa State and contain Duffey. Do not allow him to use his athleticism against you on Saturday.
Protect the football: Texas Tech had a lot of their success last week due to poor ball security by the Cowboys. Charlie Brewer has shown a knack to make smart decisions and protect the football evidenced in his 11 touchdowns passes and zero interceptions.
Establish the run: One thing that all Baylor victories have had in common is they have been the better team on the ground. Baylor will need to continue this trend to come out with a victory on Saturday. It doesn’t have to be by much but be the better team on the ground and a win is likely.
Matt’s Game Prediction
Texas Tech did Baylor a favor by performing the way they did against Oklahoma State. If Texas Tech would have lost Baylor may have looked ahead to their next opponent which is Oklahoma State. But Baylor will not be looking past the Red Raiders now. The Bears will be solely focused on defeating Texas Tech on homecoming to move to 6-0. I think the Baylor defense will have another solid performance and they are able to shut down the Red Raider rushing attack. The defense will also make Duffey very uncomfortable and he will not be able to repeat his previous week’s performance. Brewer will come back in full force and the offense will quiet all the doubters and he will have the best offensive performance of the year so far.