5-1 and 19th-ranked BYU will travel to Waco to take on 5-1 Baylor Saturday afternoon on ESPN. BYU is coming off its first loss of the season while Baylor is coming off a blowout win at home over West Virginia. Baylor has looked sharp on both sides of the ball, but their lone win over a team with a winning record was versus Iowa State.
National media from around the country previewed and predicted Saturday’s game. We roundup their takes below.
Former BYU offensive coordinator Jeff Grimes helped turn Zach Wilson into the No. 1 pick, and now has completely transformed Dave Aranda’s Baylor offense. Bears quarterback Gerry Bohanon has an 11-to-0 TD-INT ratio and running backs Abram Smith and Trestan Ebner are averaging a combined 6.9 yards per carry. Best of luck keeping up, Cougars.
Baylor 30, BYU 22
Pick: Baylor -6.5
BYU lost at home to Boise State because it fumbled the ball three times. Those were the first fumbles of the season for the Cougars. I think BYU holds onto the ball and I’m still not totally convinced in Baylor even after a big win over West Virginia a week ago. Pick: BYU +6.5
It’s an interesting dead-even matchup between two teams with a whole lot on the line for a midseason non-conference game.
BYU has Idaho State on the slate as a backstop, but it still has a nasty run – at Washington State, Virginia, at Georgia Southern, at USC – still to deal with.
The Cougars aren’t going to crank up the ground game like they’ll want to, but they’ll throw well enough to stay in the battle. Baylor will be just a little bit sharper in the second half – it’ll be better overall on third downs when needed.
It’ll be very, very entertaining.
Baylor 30, BYU 27
Even after Boise loss, Sitake is 16-2 SU, 11–6-1 vs. line with BYU since LY, also 5-2 vs. spread last seven away from Provo.
Tech Edge: BYU, based on recent trends.
4 of the 5 panelists pick Baylor to win.