The Baylor Bears, perhaps a sleeper in the Big 12, will stay in Texas for their Week 4 matchup against the Rice Owls. Baylor are off to a fast start with blowouts over SFA and UTSA. Having said that, Baylor haven’t played any solid competition thus far. No disrespect to SFA and UTSA, but they do not have the talent to keep up with a school like Baylor.
The most impressive part of the wins is how Baylor won their games. They blew out Stephen F. Austin by a score of 56-17 and then had things rolling against UTSA the next week, 63-14. Baylor were off last week on a bye, so they head into Rice feeling fresh and ready to go.
Rice are coming off a blowout loss by a score of 48-13 against the Texas Longhorns. Texas were on the heels of one of their biggest games of the year against LSU, so I can’t with certainly that the Longhorns were even into the game. Despite simply going through the motions, Texas were still able to blow out Rice and cover the spread.
The Owls are looking for their first win of the season against Baylor this weekend. They were losers by a score of 41-21 against Wake Forest and Army, 14-7, as Rice go into this one with a record of 0-3. Starting quarterback, Wiley Green, could be back against the Bears, which would help Rice.
It’s impressive that Green could return this week after laying motionless on a hit against Wake Forest only two weeks ago. Avoiding a life altering injury and getting back on the field this season is a win. He was on the ground for a while before getting stretchered off the field. I don’t know if Green being back is going to have an impact on the final score, though.
He’s not a huge difference maker, but can be a better option than grad transfer from Harvard, Tom Stewart. Rice has a tall order against the Baylor offense on Saturday afternoon. They couldn’t handle Texas and Baylor are going to be as equally as difficult. Head below for our free Baylor vs. Rice pick.
Baylor Bears vs. Rice Owls NCAAF Week 4 Betting Odds:
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Baylor vs. Rice Pick:
Baylor haven’t had to leave the state of Texas yet this season and have already had a bye week. So, while there are rumblings of being Baylor a major threat in the Big 12, we don’t exactly know where they stand compared to say Oklahoma or Texas. Everyone is crowning Oklahoma and has Jalen Hurts hoisting the Heisman, but again, their competition has been weak.
Even after this week, we’re not going to be completely sure about Baylor. If they embarrass Rice, not too much changes for the Bears. They’ve already blown out competition around the same level as Rice, so Baylor will remain stagnant.
Their best challenge may not come until October 19th against Oklahoma State. They have a couple of tricky spots late in the year, with back-to-back games against Texas and Oklahoma. In any event, Baylor can only play the schedule that they have right now and they’ve been handling their business.
Baylor QB, Charlie Brewer, has been making it look easy through the air with 6 passing touchdowns and no interceptions. Whatever Baylor have wanted to do, whether it’s on the ground or air, they’ve been able to accomplish. The ground attack has been particularly impressive.
Baylor are 5th in the FBS with 318 rushing yards per contest. They may not have played anyone yet, but Rice isn’t anyone as well. The Owls are 113th in the country with 201 yards allowed per game on the ground. Overall, they’re 105th in the country with 435 yards allowed per game, along with 34.3 points per game surrendered. Expect Brewer to make it look easy, but the real stars of this game are going to be in the backfield. Look for Baylor to rack up the rushing yards against this paper-thin defense.
Whether Green or Stewart gets the start here for Rice likely isn’t going to matter. The Bears have been getting after it defensively as well in 2019. They have allowed just 15.5 points per game and are 20th in the FBS with 272 rushing yards per game. I forecast a 45-14 win for Baylor on Saturday afternoon, providing us with a solid play on Baylor at -26.5.