MATCHUP: #9 Baylor Bears (1-0, 0-0) vs. #21 BYU Cougars (1-0, N/A)
LOCATION: Provo, Utah
ODB GAME HUB: Baylor Bears at BYU Cougars 2022
OPPONENT’S SB NATION BLOG: Vanquish The Foe (VTF)
PODCASTS: OurDailyPodcast | Please Bear With Me | Bear Den | Locked on Baylor
ODB QUICK HITTER: BYU.
ODB DEPTH CHART POST: Here.
ODB FIRST LOOK: Here.
ODB VIRTUAL WATCH PARTY: BYU.
COLLEGEFOOTBALLDATA.COM TEAM PAGES: Baylor | BYU
WEEKLY PRESS CONFERENCE: BYU
GAME NOTES (INCLUDING DEPTH CHART): Here.
BAYLORBEARS.COM PREVIEW: Here.
SPREAD: BYU -3 (opened at -3), O/U 53.5
TV COVERAGE: ESPN, 9:15 CT
UNIFORM: Green/white/green. BYU is going with all blue.
Before we get started, I am writing this on the Baylor charter from Waco, which is jam packed with fans read for this game. The vibes on this flight are immaculate. I can’t hardly describe it to you. A few updates:
WEATHER (IN PROVO):
Hard to imagine better weather in September. Per Wunderground.com, the game-time (8:15 PM local) temperature should be about 83 degrees with low humidity, dropping into the sixties by the time the game is over. Very light winds.
VIRTUAL WATCH PARTY:
I linked it above but want to call it out again here. We are trying something new here at ODB for this week’s game with a Virtual Watch Party through the Playback app. There is a post about it on the front page that you can access here.
None from Baylor that we know of, and BYU is still being coy about their two wide receivers Puka Nacua and Gunner Romney. I would bet that at least one of them plays, as I talk about a little below. I wouldn’t expect any more information before the start of the game; BYU has no reason to let that out now (although, I don’t think they really have any reason not to, but they obviously won’t because football coaches are the paranoid sort).
ODB STAFF PREDICTIONS:
Once again I polled our crew here at ODB (and some of our friends) for predictions for this week’s game. Here’s what I got back, with all the same caveats as before:
- Matt Wilson (@mattisbear): Baylor 45, BYU 21
- Peter Pope (@pbpope): Baylor 35, BYU 24
- David Fankhauser (@dfank_bu): STAND BY.
- Amy Pagitt (@AGP4BU): Baylor 42, BYU 27
- Etta (@bayloretta): Baylor 35, BYU 31
- Evan Hebert (@evanhebert): Baylor 34, BYU 24
- Joe Goodman (@the_joe_goodman): Baylor 34, BYU 24
- Cody Orr (@cody_orr): Baylor 31, BYU 24
- Michael Nichols (@pckt_chng): Baylor 28, BYU 24
- Jenna Patteson (@jenp108): Baylor 31, BYU 26
- Will Boles (@_willboles): Baylor 35, BYU 24
- Jed Johnston (@BearMySoul17): Baylor 28, BYU 24
- Scott Byrne (@BearNTX): Baylor 45, BYU 24
- Branden MacKinnon (@Branden_MacK): Baylor 30, BYU 27 (he adds it will be on a last-second field goal).
- Deonte Epps (@DEppsRightStepS): Baylor 35, BYU 24
- David Hornbeak (@davidhornbeak): Baylor 38, BYU 24
- Fielding Montgomery (@FieldinOfDreams): Baylor 35, BYU 31
- Chad Gauntt (friend of the blog, on my flight right now): Baylor 41, BYU 28
As for me—I’m going to try to bring my head out of the green-and-gold clouds for a few minutes to put together a rational prediction, but I’ll admit that it will be difficult, and I have no idea if I will be successful.
We know that BYU should be a very good team. They were good last year when we beat them convincingly in Waco, Jaren Hall is a very good (at worst) QB with good weapons around him, and Sitake is an excellent coach. Even if doesn’t appear like the duo of Puka Nacua and Gunner Romney will be at full strength, I would expect at least one of them (probably Romney) plays in this game, if not both.
The thing that gives me pause about this game should be obvious—it is on the road in what should be a very charged environment in Provo. Road games are difficult, and until we perform well in them consistently, I will not expect it. Moreover, I strongly suspect Romney could have played last week against USF had he been needed—Sitake said as much—which says to me that they kept him out for a reason: to be ready for this game. Given their impending entry into the conference, the fact that we beat them last year in Waco, and our lofty ranking, there is every reason to believe BYU has had this game circled on the schedule and been preparing all offseason for what we might bring. Now, the same could be true for Baylor but to a lesser extent given BYU probably isn’t the best or even second-best team we play this year.
On the other hand, even with a more-experienced Hall at QB and playing in Provo, I keep thinking back to last season’s performance by our defense against BYU’s rushing attack, which had Tyler Allgeier then (and does not now). Baylor held BYU to just 67 rushing yards in the entire game, the lowest output by any opponent last season. Our defensive line should be even better this year. The likelihood of a drastically better output by their offense on the ground seems small, which means BYU’s offense will go as well as Hall plays. And as much as I believe in the concept underlying the supposed Tenth Man Rule, I also have faith that Ron Roberts and Dave Aranda will have a plan for him. Add to that improved QB play on our part by Blake Shapen, and I’m taking Baylor. But it won’t be easy.
My Prediction: Baylor 31, BYU 27
Predict the outcome of tomorrow’s Baylor vs. BYU game on ESPN!
This poll is closed
Baylor, huge (20+)
Baylor, big (14-20)
Baylor, moderate (7-13)
Baylor, close (1-6)