Bears have knocked off the Red Raiders in seven of their last nine meetings
The Baylor Bears‘ recent string of dominance over the Texas Tech Red Raiders typifies BU’s rise in the Big 12 pecking order. In the 2000s, Tech was running roughshod over the lowly Bears. Yet, since 2011, Baylor has won seven of the last nine games between the two teams.
Are the Red Raiders ready to show Baylor who’s boss again, or will the Bears also own the coming decade?
Here’s what to watch in the first matchup of the teams in the 2020s.
Baylor at Texas Tech
Kickoff: Saturday, Nov. 14 at 4 p.m. ET
Spread: Texas Tech -1
When Baylor Has the Ball
The Bears (1-4) showed signs of life on offense a week ago versus Iowa State. Notably, BU quarterback Charlie Brewer completed 22 of his 33 passes for 295 yards and three touchdowns.
Unfortunately for Baylor, Brewer also tossed two interceptions. The second pick came late in the game as the Bears were driving deep into Cyclones territory. Baylor can’t afford another sloppy performance from its veteran quarterback this week.
Brewer and the Bears won’t get much resistance from this week’s opponent, though. The Red Raiders are allowing a disconcerting 40.1 points per game this season. Opponents are averaging more than six yards every time they snap the ball against Tech, including 7.9 yards per passing attempt.
When Texas Tech Has the Ball
A leaky defense comes as no surprise from Tech. A lack of offensive firepower does.
The Red Raiders (2-5, 1-5 Big 12) are missing a calling card on offense this season. Behind sophomore SaRodorick Thompson, Tech’s rushing attack is adequate but unspectacular. Meanwhile, the Red Raiders are averaging a measly 6.6 yards ypa, the third-lowest average in the Big 12.
Of course, despite the best efforts of first-year head coach and defensive guru Dave Aranda, the Baylor defense leaves plenty to be desired. The Bears are giving up 4.24 yards per rushing attempt, so Thompson could be in store for a workout.
With the number of marquee games around the country dwindling this weekend, this contest may find more eyes on it than your typical matchup of teams residing in the bottom half of the Big 12. Is that a good thing? Each team owns just one conference win this year.
Texas Tech offensive coordinator David Yost will probably want SaRodorick Thompson to carry the rock frequently against Baylor’s unimposing defensive front. In turn, that should take some pressure off of his quarterbacks. Both Utah State transfer Henry Colombi and oft-injured Alex Bowman are expected to see snaps against Baylor.
Their counterpart, Charlie Brewer, provides more of a steadying presence in the Baylor huddle. Although injuries have taken a toll on the veteran field general, the Bears can count on Brewer to string together enough drives to keep up with Tech on the scoreboard. Baylor should find itself in prime position to tack on a late score and put the Bears over the top.
Prediction: Baylor 31, Texas Tech 28
— ATHLON SPORTS