Baylor (9-1, 6-1) at TCU (9-2, 6-2)
When: Friday, November 27th 2015
Where: Amon G. Carter Stadium, Fort Worth, TX
Time: 8:30 ET | TV: ESPN
The Baylor Bears will go into Fort Worth, Texas Friday night with their third-string quarterback in hopes of knocking off TCU and keeping their Big 12 and playoff chances alive. The Bears bounced back nicely from their home loss against Oklahoma two weeks ago and picked up a huge road win at previously unbeaten Oklahoma State 45-35. Backup QB Jarrett Stidham left that game with a broken ankle and third-stringer Chris Johnson came in and threw two touchdowns and one interception. The sophomore has only thrown 15 passes in his two years at Baylor, but coach Art Briles has confidence in him. “He can do it.” Baylor leads the nation in scoring (53.8) and total offense (644.1 yards), but might be without running back Shock Linwood due to knee and ankle injuries. Linwood has rushed for 1,240 yard and 10 touchdowns this season. Johnson will rely on junior receiver Corey Coleman, who has been great this season and leads the nation with 20 touchdown receptions while catching 66 passes for 1,306 yards. Sophomore wideout KD Cannon (39 catches for 774 yards and six touchdowns) and senior receiver Jay Lee (34 for 714 with eight scores) are also terrific targets for this Baylor offense.
TCU’s chances at a Big 12 title and playoff spot were dashed last week when they came up short at Oklahoma 30-29. Third-string QB Bram Kohlhausen led a furious rally with two fourth quarter touchdown passes, but his two-point conversion pass was knocked away preserving the win for the Sooners. Kohlhausen came in for relief of Foster Sawyer who threw three interceptions on 8-of-18 passing. Star QB Trevone Boykin missed the game with an ankle injury, but has been upgraded to probable this week against Baylor. The Horned Frogs average 42.9 points and 588.2 yards per game but have lost senior standout receiver Josh Doctson for the season and will also be without two key offensive lineman. Running back Aaron Green has posted back-to-back 100-yard rushing games and has 1,099 yards and 10 touchdowns this season. TCU will try to avenge last season’s heart-breaking 61-58 loss at Baylor in which they led by 21 points with 11 minutes left to play.
I’m not going to shy away from Baylor despite the fact that they are on their third-string quarterback. This system at Baylor is basically a plug-and-play and Briles has confidence in Johnson. The offensive line injuries worry me for TCU and also Boykin’s ankle and he’s not going to have his big-play receiver the rest of the season. I think Baylor gets it done again on the road.
Pick: Baylor +1