The Baylor Bears will attempt to make it two wins in a row to start the 2018 season later this evening against the UT-San Antonio Roadrunners in the Alamodome. Before we do anything else, let’s get this out of the way:
Yes, the game is on Facebook.
CUSA has the TV rights to this game since it’s technically a home game for UTSA, and the game will be broadcast on Facebook Live. Here’s an article telling you all about it.
I’ll be watching through the Facebook Watch app on AppleTV. It’s not ideal, but my bet is that we’re going to see a lot more sporting events hosted like this over the coming years, so we might as well get used to it.
Saturday, September 8 Viewing Guide
Today’s games are already underway, but you can take a look at the Mothership’s viewing guide here. This is what I’ll be flipping between:
- 11 AM — Mississippi State @ Kansas State (ESPN); Duke @ Northwestern (ESPNU, in case you want to see our next opponent); Arizona @ Houston (ABC).
- 12 PM — UCLA @ Oklahoma (Fox)
- 2:30 PM — Georgia @ Sakerlina (CBS)
- 6 PM — Baylor @ UTSA (Facebook); Clemson @ Texas A&M (ESPN).
- 9:45 PM — Michigan State @ Arizona State (ESPN).
There are several other games going on, obviously, but those are the most important ones to me.
Notes on Baylor vs. UTSA
Baylor will be donning our all-white #beartrooper uniforms today, which would be even better if the shoulder claws weren’t gold. Here’s the reveal:
I love it. There could be some confusion on the field because UTSA is apparently also wearing white pants and white helmets, but they’re going with blue jerseys. It should be fine.
QB Rotation Continues
It looks like Charlie Brewer is back at full speed this week after his slight back injury against Abilene Christian, which puts us square back into what should be an interesting QB rotation. We don’t know who will start (I would guess Brewer again), but both Brewer and Jalan McClendon will play.
Baylor Injury Updates
- LT Josh Malin is out for a little while from his knee injury sustained on the second play against ACU.
- Jake Fruhmorgen should make his first appearance in a Baylor uniform this evening, and Xavier Newman should join him in his first game of this season. That will help our OL depth. I don’t expect Johncarlo Valentin to play this week, but it’s possible.
- Verkedric Vaughns may play but will be limited if he does. Blake Lynch has moved back to safety to help fill that spot right now. That means Henry Black will receive the vast majority of playing time at SLB.
- Clay Johnston is back at MLB. That’s huge.
I think that’s it for right now. Anything else I see, I’ll throw in the comments.
Things to Watch:
Set the QB issue aside for a moment if you can. These are the biggest issues I see (other than that):
- Offensive Line — Even with their losses on defense, I think we can expect UTSA to have a significantly better defensive line than Abilene Christian. We ultimately ran the ball fairly well against ACU and will need to do so again.
- UTSA’s Rebuilt Offense — According to SB Nation’s UnderdogDynasty’s preview for this week, UTSA will be without starting RB Jalen Rhodes due to injury, and Cordale Grundy is likely to be the starting QB (although it’s not set in stone). Replacing Rhodes will be two guys in B.J. Daniels and Brenden Brady that have zero rushes over 10 yards between the two of them. At least as of the time I wrote this.
- UTSA’s Rush Defense — If you didn’t see their game last week, Arizona State just killed UTSA on the ground, running for 266 yards on 36 carries. Of course, they pretty much killed them everywhere considering they won 49-7. But the rushing results are encouraging because we will obviously try to establish the run early.
- Baylor’s Run Defense — After rewatching the game several times, I’ve come to the conclusion that our struggles to prevent big plays in the running game against ACU came mostly as the result of bad angles and poor tackling, not necessarily bad scheme. Our guys were in the right position to make plays and just failed to do so. Hopefully we can get some of that fixed this week.
- Baylor’s Pass Rush — UTSA gave up nine sacks last week to ASU’s defense. Now, it’s likely that ASU has a better defense than we do, but if we are unable to replicate that effort somewhat, that will be alarming. Hopefully James Lockhart, James Lynch, and friends can get to the QB tonight.
Official Prediction: Baylor 38, UTSA 17
UnderdogDynasty says 44-21, which is as good a prediction as any to me. I’m going to say that UTSA slows us down a bit more at their place than they did ASU in Tempe, but we are able to hold them to two touchdowns and a field goal. I think I may be selling our offense short here, but I don’t know. What I’m more curious to see is which of the two QBs (if either) moves the ball better against UTSA. I can’t imagine they keep the rotation going forever, and the more separation we start to see, the easier a decision will become.
TWEETS TWEETS TWEETS TWEETS TWEETS TWEETS
My clipper tool isn’t working today, so I’m going to try to fill the Links space with more tweets that have links. We’ll see how it goes.
Can’t make it to San Antonio? You can watch Baylor take on UTSA at @walk_ons and @BaylorClub Saturday at 6 pm.— Baylor Football (@BUFootball) September 6, 2018
Also, catch the @BaylorIMG postgame show at @BaylorClub following the game.#SicUTSA pic.twitter.com/BWhCrfPd4L
McClendon making his case as Baylor QB https://t.co/Q4V1yraswb— KNCT SPORTS (@KNCT_SPORTS) September 8, 2018
Since I waited so long to put this up, we can use it as our first Open Thread of the day. As of this writing, MSU is up 10-3 on KSU in the second quarter.