Oklahoma (8-1, 5-1) at Baylor (8-0, 5-0)
When: Saturday, November 14th 2015
Where: McLane Stadium, Waco, TX
Time: 8:00 ET | TV: ABC
The Baylor Bears look to finally impress the College Football Playoff committee when they play their first game against a team with a winning record when Oklahoma visits Saturday night. The Bears are one of the most explosive teams in the country, but are on the outside looking in in the latest rankings. Baylor sits at 6th behind two on-loss teams in Alabama and Notre Dame. The Bears played their closest game of the season last Thursday night in Kansas State, holding off the Wildcats 31-24. It was freshman Jarrett Stidham’s first start in place of injured star Seth Russell. Stidham threw for 419 yards, 3 touchdowns, and ran for another score. He hooked up with Heisman candidate Corey Coleman 11 times for 216 yards and two touchdowns. Coleman has multiple touchdowns in every game this season, but one. He’s also broke 100 yards in nine of his ten games. The junior wide receiver is a legitimate NFL prospect. If Baylor wins out, they will definitely deserve a spot in the playoffs. I know their non-conference schedule was a joke, but including tonight, they still play at Oklahoma State and at TCU, before finishing up at home against Texas.
The Oklahoma Sooners have quietly snuck back into the Playoff race. After their embarrassing loss to Texas on October 10th, the Sooners have reeled off four straight and have scored over 50 points in each of those games. Like Baylor, the Sooners schedule is back-loaded with TCU and Oklahoma State left to play. Oklahoma has gone over 600 yards of total offense in their last three games and are now ranked 6th in that category. Their defense just might be good enough to slow down Baylor a bit. They’re ranked 16th in points allowed and 17th in passing defense in the FBS. The Sooners took the first 20 meetings in this series, but have lost the last two by a combined 89-26. This is the best Sooners team in a while, and I expect a closer game this year. Junior quarterback Baker Mayfield is having a very underrated season completing 70.2% of his passes with 28 touchdowns and only 4 interceptions. He’s only thrown one pick in his last six games. Running back Samaje Perine is getting better as the season wears on. He’s picked up 386 yards and seven touchdowns in just the last three games.
I can’t wait for this game. I think Oklahoma has the better overall team and I’m a little worried about the freshman Stidham’s first real big game in front of the home crowd. Baylor just has not been tested enough this year. I’ll go with Oklahoma in a mild upset.
Pick: Oklahoma +2.5