#7 Baylor Bears at #19 Texas Christian Horned Frogs
Friday, November 27, 2015, 7:30 pm Eastern, TV: ESPN
Amon G. Carter Stadium – Fort Worth, Texas
Opening Line: TCU -2
Current Line: Baylor -1 1/2
Opening Total: 80
Current Total: 74 1/2
Opening Money Line: TCU -125 / Baylor +105
Current Money Line: Baylor -125 / TCU +105
At the beginning of the season, both the Baylor Bears and Texas Christian Horned Frogs were ranked in the top five in the pre-season rankings. They stayed there for most of the season but the teams have combined for three losses in November. Still, the 9-1 Bears and 9-2 Horned Frogs meet Friday in Fort Worth. There is still a lot on the line. Baylor is 6-1 in the Big 12 behind 7-1 Oklahoma and Oklahoma State. If Oklahoma State upsets Oklahoma and Baylor wins their last two games then the Bears will win the Big 12 title, along with a possible playoff berth. TCU is 6-2 and looks to play spoiler.
Baylor leads the series 52-51-7 against TCU overall, but the Horned Frogs are 21-18-1 in Fort Worth against the Bears. Baylor has won 3 of the 4 games against TCU since the Horned Frogs joined the Big 12. Last year, Baylor overcame a 21 point fourth quarter deficit to win 61-58 in Waco. It was the only loss of the season for TCU and kept the Horned Frogs out of the playoff.
Baylor is coached by Art Briles. The Bears have road wins over SMU 56-21, Kansas 66-7, Kansas State 31-24 and Oklahoma State 45-35 last week. Baylor has home wins over Lamar 66-31, Rice 70-17, West Virginia 62-38 and Iowa State 45-27 along with a neutral site win against Texas Tech 63-35 in Arlington, TX. Baylor suffered their only loss of the season at home to Oklahoma 44-34.
Baylor was a 3 point favorite at previously undefeated Oklahoma State last week and the total was 76. The Bears took an early 14-0 lead but the Cowboys would tie it up by the end of the first. Baylor scored 24 straight points to take control of the game. OSU would never get closer than 10 points for the rest of the game. Baylor overcame 3 turnovers but did have 700 total yards. Baylor is 5-4 ATS and the total is 7-3 this season.
The win was costly though as quarterback Jarrett Stidham suffered a broken ankle. He is out for the season. Baylor had already lost starting quarterback Seth Russell for the season to a neck injury. Third stringer Chris Johnson took over for Stidham and will start for the rest of the season.
TCU is coached by Gary Patterson. The Horned Frogs have road wins over Minnesota 23-17, Texas Tech 55-52, Kansas State 52-45 and Iowa State 45-21. TCU has home wins over Stephen F. Austin 70-7, SMU 56-37, Texas 50-7 and West Virginia 40-10 and Kansas 23-17. TCU lost at Oklahoma State 49-29 and Oklahoma last week 30-29.
TCU was an 18 point underdog against Oklahoma and the total was 64. TCU quarterback Trevone Boykin missed the game with an ankle injury. The Horned Frogs took an early 7-0 lead, but Oklahoma scored 23 straight points to close out the first half. In the second half, Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield sat out with a concussion. The two teams exchanged touchdowns in the third quarter, but TCU missed a two point conversion. Oklahoma led 30-13 going into the fourth, and held off a furious TCU rally. TCU scored with 51 seconds left with a chance to tie the game. However, TCU went for two instead of kicking the extra point. The Sooners knocked the pass down and held on for the win. Oklahoma had 536 total yards to 390 for TCU. The Horned Frogs had four turnovers. TCU is 5-6 ATS and the total is 5-6 this season.
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Baylor is outscoring teams 54-28 this season. The Bears lead the nation in scoring. Baylor is averaging 644 yards per game on offense including 351 passing and 293 rushing yards. The Bears lead the nation in total offense, are #4 in rushing and are #9 in passing. Baylor is allowing 406 total yards per game on defense including 249 passing and 157 rushing yards. The Bears have forced 22 turnovers and have 16 of their own. The Bears average 82 penalty yards per game and opponents average 68. Baylor is 90/164 on third and fourth down conversions and opponents are 69/178. The Bears have forced 25 sacks and allowed 12 this season. Baylor is 50/55 scoring in the red zone with 43 touchdowns and opponents are 28/31 with 23 touchdowns. The Bears have a defensive touchdown this season and have allowed a kick return for a touchdown.
Russell has completed 59.5% of his passes for 2,104 yards with 29 touchdowns and 6 interceptions, and has rushed for 402 yards on 49 carries with 6 touchdowns. Stidham has thrown for 1,265 yards with 12 touchdowns and 2 interceptions, and also has 2 rushing touchdowns. Johnson threw for 138 yards with 2 touchdowns and an interception, and had 6 rushes for 42 yards and a touchdown against Oklahoma State.
Running back Shock Linwood has 175 carries for 1,240 yards and 10 touchdowns, plus 8 catches and a touchdown. Terence Williams has 61 carries for 417 yards and a touchdown. Johnny Jefferson has 78 carries for 461 yards and 4 touchdowns, plus 3 catches. Devin Chafin has 62 carries for 265 yards and 6 touchdowns.
Receiver Corey Coleman has 66 catches for 1,306 yards and 20 touchdowns. Jay Lee has 34 catches for 714 yards and 8 touchdowns. K.D. Cannon has 39 catches for 774 yards and 6 touchdowns. Four defensive players are listed as questionable or out.
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TCU is outscoring teams 43-27 this season. The Horned Frogs are #6 in scoring nationally. TCU averages 588 yards per game, including 363 passing and 225 rushing yards. The Horned Frogs are in the top 5 nationally in total and passing offense, and #21 in rushing. On defense, TCU is allowing 402 yards per game, including 228 passing and 175 rushing yards. The Horned Frogs have forced 13 turnovers and have 16 of their own. TCU averages 70 penalty yards per game and opponents average 56 per game. The Horned Frogs are 84/173 on third and fourth down conversions and opponents are 60/197. TCU has forced 26 sacks and allowed 14 this season. The Frogs are 44/57 scoring in the red zone with 37 touchdowns. Opponents are 28/35 with 20 touchdowns. TCU has two defensive touchdowns and a punt return touchdown this season.
Quarterback Trevone Boykin has completed 65.8% of his passes for 3,427 yards with 29 touchdowns and 9 interceptions. He has also rushed for 596 yards on 109 carries with 8 touchdowns. He is questionable with the ankle injury. Back-ups Bram Kohlhausen and Foster Sawyer split the snaps against Oklahoma and could do so again if Boykin can’t go. Kohlhausen has thrown for 369 yards with 3 touchdowns and an interception, and has 7 carries for 20 yards. Sawyer has 155 passing yards with 2 touchdowns and 3 interceptions, and has 14 catches for 53 yards.
Running back Aaron Green has 202 carries for 1,099 yards and 10 touchdowns, plus 13 catches and a touchdown. Trevorris Johnson has 42 carries for 262 yards. Kyle Hicks has 39 carries for 197 yards and 3 touchdowns.
Receiver Josh Doctson has 79 catches for 1,327 yards and 14 touchdowns. He is out for the season with shoulder and wrist injuries. KaVontae Turpin has 37 catches for 569 yards and 7 touchdowns. Kolby Listenbee has 28 catches for 593 yards and 5 touchdowns. Desmon White has 19 catches for 258 yards. Shaun Nixon has 36 catches for 424 yards and a touchdowns. Ty Slanina has 11 catches for 134 yards, but is out for the season with a broken collarbone. Three defensive players and two offensive lineman are listed as questionable or out.
Baylor is 8-1 ATS after gaining more than 450 total yards, 22-4 after accumulating 100 rushing yards or less, 4-1 against teams with winning records, and against teams with winning home records, 22-8-1 after scoring more than 40 points, 21-8 after rushing for more than 200 yards, 17-7-1 after a cover, 27-13-1 overall, and 1-4 in November. The last 4 games in this series have gone over the total.
TCU is 4-0 ATS against teams with winning road records, 14-2 on grass, 12-2 at home, 10-4 against teams with winning records, 14-6 after allowing more than 450 total yards, 18-8 overall, 13-6 in Big 12 games, 2-5 after a straight up loss and 1-4 in Friday games. The underdog is 4-0 ATS in this series recently. The Horned Frogs have covered 7 of the last 8 against the Bears.
Even though third string quarterbacks could see action for both teams, both these teams have explosive offenses. This should be a high scoring shootout. I think Baylor wins a close game with their running game. Johnson is a better runner than Stidham and he adds another dimension to the offense.