Baylor Bears vs. TCU Horned Frogs
The Baylor Bears and the TCU Horned Frogs take center stage as they meet for a Friday Night College Football matchup. The Horned Frogs are -7 point favorites over the Bears with an over/under point total set at 57.
The Baylor Bears went to the Texas Bowl last year but Art Briles’ team isn’t anywhere near where they want to be nor where they believe they can be. While this is clearly Briles’ team, it’s tough to even begin to talk about Baylor football without talking about QB Robert Griffin who it’s almost hard to believe is still just a Junior. Griffin’s story is well documented as Briles was the only coach willing to allow the world class sprinter to play QB and who recovered from an injury two years ago to lead the Bears to a bowl last season. While Baylor loses their top running back in Jay Finley and who will replace him still being somewhat undecided, the Bears return nearly their entire very large offensive line and a corps of speedy Wide Receivers led by Kendall Wright. Defensively Baylor’s pass defense was their weak link last year ranking 114th in the country but new Defensive Coordinator Phil Bennett’s unit will be a lot faster as he has converted safeties to linebackers and linebackers to defensive linemen, a formula that has worked at so many places over the years. While the expectations in the conference are muted for Baylor, the expectation s within the program are big.
It was a magical season in 2010 for Gary Patterson’s TCU Horned Frogs as they ran the table including defeating Big Ten Champion Wisconsin in the Rose Bowl. Gone is QB Andy Dalton who was a four year starter and while I never thought he was the best athlete or most talented, it’s tough to deny his leadership or just how much of a gamer he is. Casey Pachall takes over at QB while Kyle Dooley and the talented Ed Wesley are the only returning starters on offense. While the Horned Frogs don’t return much on offense, the cupboard is far from bare as this is a program who has been winning and winning big for quite some time. As good as Dalton and the offense have been, it’s been the defense that is the signature of the TCU program and this year’s unit is led by Middle Linebacker Tank Carder who can single handily shift the momentum of a game but he’s not alone by any means as Tanner Brock is back at LB, Stansly Maponga should be a handful at Defensive End, and Greg McCoy adds senior leadership at Corner. This TCU team is long on talent but short on experience and they will be hard pressed to repeat 2010’s epic run.
Baylor is 0-4 against the spread in their last four home games, 0-4 against the spread in in their last four against the Mountain West Conference, and 1-6 against the spread in their last seven games as an underdog of 3.5 to 10 points. TCU is 1-5 against the spread in their last six non-conference games, 6-2 against the spread in their last eight games against the Big 12, and 1-4 against the spread in their last five games as a favorite of 3.5 to 10 points. Texas Christian has covered in the last four meetings of these two.
I think both teams move the ball effectively and while it’s an agressive number, this one should sail past the over.