Texas vs. Baylor Free College Football Picks for Week 9

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Hudson Card #1 of the Texas Longhorns. Tim Warner/Getty Images/AFP

Texas and Baylor return from their bye weeks on Saturday to meet in Waco in a Big 12 matchup. The Longhorns have lost two straight, to Oklahoma and Oklahoma State, and are 4-3 on the year, 2-2 in the conference, despite scoring a total of 72 points over the two games. Baylor has won two straight and are 6-1, 3-1 in the Big 12 and in a three-way tie for the second place.

Below, we’ll take a look at the early NCAAF odds and the best sportsbook to bet with this week. 

Texas Longhorns vs. Baylor Bears 

Saturday, October 30, 2021 – 12:00 PM EDT at McLane Stadium

Tough Schedule

No. 16 Baylor will be the fourth-ranked opponent Texas has faced this year, including each of the last three games. So far, an 38-18 opening weekend win over No. 23 Louisiana is the only success the Longhorns have had against a ranked foe. The Texas offensive line has struggled this season.

Coach Steve Sarkisian said the week off will help the Longhorn blockers get healthy—Derek Kerstetter has been battling injury and Jake Majors was also able to “get his body back right.”

Coach Sarkisian believes the week off will be even more beneficial for the team mentally after two second-half collapses in a row. “Working on us from a psyche standpoint, it’s not about our capability to perform. We’ve proven that. We’ve shown that through the first half of games, but the ability to finish was obviously a big point of emphasis for us last week. Did as much psychologically as we did from a physical standpoint.”

On the injury front, linebacker DeMarvion Overshown has returned to practice. The team’s leading tackler suffered a concussion early in the Oklahoma State game and missed the last three quarters. Sophomore cornerback Kitan Crawford also went down with a hamstring injury in the Oklahoma State game. He’s still day-to-day as he tries to recover from the injury.

Distractions for Head Coach?

The Bears are bowl eligible after seven weeks, and a successful start to the season for an up-and-coming team often comes with questions about how long the coach behind the success will be sticking around.

Baylor coach Dave Aranda had to answer questions about possible links to job openings at LSU and USC this week. In his second year with the Bears, Aranda spent the previous four seasons as defensive coordinator in Baton Rouge.

Needless to say, the distractions are not welcome with the coach. “I try to go away from the attention,” he said. “I try to not be around it.” Aranda also reaffirmed his commitment to Baylor, saying, “I love it here, and my family loves it here.”

On the field, Aranda is worried about the Texas offense, which is in the top two in the Big 12 in scoring and yardage. Baylor struggled to contain BYU’s passing game, so the Longhorn air attack could cause problems. The Bears will rely on their running game when they have the ball.

The Longhorns have struggled with their run defense this season. Baylor has two running backs—Abram Smith and Trestan Ebner—ranked in the top 20 nationally, the only team in college football to land a pair among the leaders. The Baylor offense ranks in the top 10 nationally in yards per play, rushing yards per game, fewest sacks allowed, and most fourth-down conversions.

The Pick

For your college football pick, look for Baylor to use its advantage on both lines to bully the Longhorns. Baylor will control the clock and wear down Texas in the trenches, as, even after the week off, Texas is still nursing injuries.

NCAAF Pick: Baylor -2.5 (-110) with BetOnline (visit our BetOnline Review)

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Baylor -2.5 (-110)
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*The line and/or odds on picks in this article might have moved since the content was commissioned. For updated line movements, visit BMR’s free betting odds product.