No. 3 Texas heads to Waco to face Baylor in one last Big 12 matchup between the two programs. Here are some Texas vs. Baylor predictions and best bets, and our best bet is Texas -14.5.
Texas vs. Baylor Prediction & Best Bet
Texas didn’t play its best game against Rice or Wyoming but still won each game by at least three touchdowns. The Longhorns showed what kind of potential they have when they knocked off Alabama in Tuscaloosa.
Is this Baylor team closer to Alabama or Rice right now? It’s tough to say. The Bears’ only win came against an FCS opponent, and the quarterback position is a complete uncertainty for Dave Aranda.
Most encouraging for Texas is the fact its defense has impressed when the offense isn’t entirely clicking. It should be a low-scoring day for Baylor on Saturday, even at home.
That just leaves the question of what kind of day the Longhorns will get from Quinn Ewers, who needs to be better than he was in Week 3. With the running game finally finding a rhythm against Wyoming, that should take a bit of the pressure off of Ewers.
There is too much upside with this Texas roster and too many offensive questions surrounding Baylor to expect the Bears to keep this game competitive deep into the second half. Texas -14.5 is the best bet on the board.
Texas vs. Baylor Prediction & Best Bet: Texas -14.5
Texas vs. Baylor Betting Odds
TX @ BAY
Sep. 23, 11:30 PM
Odds updated September 24th, 2023, at 2:59 am
Texas is a 14.5-point favorite on the road against Baylor. The over/under is 51.5 points, and the Longhorns are -650 on the moneyline.
It’s been a difficult year for Baylor, with home losses to Texas State and Utah. With an unproven Robertson at quarterback, it will be an uphill battle for Dave Aranda’s Bears on Saturday. Will Baylor have enough to hang with a Texas team that took down Alabama on the road?
Texas vs. Baylor Key Matchups
Here are the key matchups that could decide Saturday’s game between Texas and Baylor.
Sawyer Robertson vs. Texas Secondary
Texas has forced five interceptions through three games, including two from Rice’s JT Daniels and two from Alabama’s Jalen Milroe. Robertson has been turnover-prone early this season. That’s a problem.
The Mississippi State transfer has been intercepted three times in 62 passes, completing only 45.2 percent of his pass attempts. It could be a tough climb against a balanced Texas defense. The Longhorns have eight sacks in addition to their five interceptions, and this is a game in which Robertson might have to throw the ball just to keep Baylor in the game.
If the Bears fall into an early hole and can’t utilize the running game as much as they’d like, they will be doomed unless Robertson can take a serious step in the right direction.
Jonathon Brooks vs. Baylor Run Defense
The departures of Bijan Robinson and Roschon Johnson have taken the name recognition out of Texas’ backfield, but Jonathon Brooks looked like a name to remember in Week 3.
While Quinn Ewers had a surprisingly tough day against Wyoming, Brooks picked up the slack with 164 yards on 21 carries. He was serviceable in the Longhorns’ first two games, averaging just north of four yards per carry, but the win over Wyoming qualified as a breakout game.
Can he keep it going? Results have been mixed for Baylor’s run defense to this point. The Bears were able to shut down one Texas State but were beaten by another. When Baylor faced Utah, Ja’Quinden Jackson erupted for 129 yards on 19 carries.
Baylor’s best path to keeping Saturday’s game close might be to make Texas’ offense one-dimensional. Whether Aranda’s squad has the run defense to do it remains to be seen.