5/4 BAYLOR (2–0) vs. NR/NR Rice (2–1)
Sept. 26, 2015 | 2 p.m. CT
Waco, Texas | McLane Stadium (45,140)
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OPPONENT: Rice Owls
ODB GAME HUB: Baylor Bears vs. Rice Owls 2015
MEET THE PRESS: Baylor vs. Rice
OFFICIAL WEBSITE: riceowls.com
MEDIA GUIDE: 2015 Rice Owls Media Guide (Click here for roster)
LAST MEETING: 56-31 Baylor (predates ODB)
LAST GAME: W; Rice 38, North Texas 24
SB NATION BLOG: Underdog Dynasty, at right
SPREAD: Baylor –34.5 (Open: Baylor –33)
TV COVERAGE: FSSW, 2 p.m. CDT
WEATHER FORECAST: Sunny, high of 93 with 5–10mph winds from NE, 3% chance of rain (Wunderground puts temp at 89° at gametime)
BAYLOR UNIFORMS: No official word yet, announced Friday or Saturday
SBNation.com Rice Preview
Bears vs. Owls Coverage
Back to Football
Finally, your Baylor Bears are back in action on Saturday. Lots of stuff happened during the bye week. I had a whole paragraph with my thoughts about the dismissal and the "controversy" over Jeff Lebby, but deleted it because I have nothing to add to the conversation that hasn’t been said. So, with that being said, let’s talk about some football, shall we?
The final nonconference game of the 2015 season presents some interesting challenges for the Bears, given the team they’re facing and the on-field struggles they’ve had thus far this season. Rice is coming off an 8–5 season and won the Conference USA title in 2013. It may not be a juggernaut of a program, but it has turned into, as Bill Connelly calls it, "one of Conference USA’s safest bets." They are coming off a season where they were solidly in the middle of the CFB pack in S&P+ on both offense and defense. They are a run-first team with a mobile quarterback
Rice Owls 2015 Schedule
|Saturday, September 05 2015||win 56–16||coverage|
|@ Texas Longhorns||Saturday, September 12 2015||loss 28–42||coverage|
|@ North Texas Mean Green||Saturday, September 19 2015||win 38–24||coverage|
|@ Baylor Bears||Saturday, September 26 2015||3:00 PM EDT||coverage|
|Saturday, October 03 2015||3:00 PM EDT||coverage|
|@ Florida Atlantic Owls||Saturday, October 10 2015||2:30 PM EDT||coverage|
|Friday, October 23 2015||8:00 PM EDT||coverage|
|Friday, October 30 2015||8:00 PM EDT||coverage|
|@ Texas-El Paso Miners||Friday, November 06 2015||8:00 PM EST||coverage|
|Saturday, November 14 2015||3:30 PM EST||coverage|
|@ Texas-San Antonio Roadrunners||Saturday, November 21 2015||7:00 PM EST||coverage|
|Saturday, November 28 2015||3:30 PM EST||coverage|
Rice Owls 2015 Individual Stats
Driphus Jackson is the main QB and a decent run threat. The stats indicate that while he’s not exactly a dynamic threat on the ground, he can threaten on the ground if you let him get to the perimeter, something Baylor’s struggled with at points in this early season. If they can bottle him up and seal off the perimeter they may be in good shape. Given his mobility he can tend to give up more sacks, so it will be interesting to see how the defense prepares for him. At 7.3 yards per attempt and over 63% completion percentage, he’s got a decent arm.
Rushing & Receiving Stats
Instead of splitting out the table for RBs and WRs, I went ahead and left them all in the same table as it appears on sports-reference because it takes way too long to edit that HTML for the value.
The Owls’ rushing attack appears to be a 4-headed monster, with carries split between Samuel Stewart, Darik Dillard, QB Driphus Jackson, and Jowan Davis. That said, the lion’s share of Darik Dillard’s touches and yards came in the first game against Wagner and have steadily declined since. He had five carries for 21 yards last week against North Texas, while Davis had 21 and Stewart 12 in that game. Austin Walter has also seen a decent amount of action, who shouldn’t be confused with his twin brother, WR Aston Walter (side note: I bet THAT wasn’t confusing for anyone growing up, INCLUDING the parents. Nope.) Jackson was used far less in the run game last weekend, carrying the ball 6 times for –14 yards. Those aren’t ALL sacks, but since the stats treat sacks as negative rushing plays, we can’t say for certain just how many of them were.
On the other hand, WR Dennis Parks emerges as the clearest threat through the air, hauling in 16 catches for 240 yards and 2 TDs thus far in the young season. He has ten more catches than anyone else on the team, and no one else has over 100 yards receiving. That said, the ball does get spread around quite a bit, with 14 other players registering receptions on the season. Sadly for Austin, his twin Aston Walter has only one reception for –6 yards. I imagine Xavien Howard will be locked onto Parks all afternoon.
Owls Team Stats and Rankings
|Value||National Leader||Value||Conference |
|3rd Down Conversion Pct (127 ranked)||1||1||0.673||Rice||0.673||Rice||0.673|
|3rd Down Conversion Pct Defense (127 ranked)||84||7||0.394||Northwestern||0.140||Middle Tenn.||0.267|
|4th Down Conversion Pct (116 ranked)||35||2||0.667||15 teams tied||1.000||Western Ky.||0.750|
|4th Down Conversion Pct Defense (118 ranked)||1||1||0.000||14 teams tied||0.000||Rice||0.000|
|Blocked Kicks (11 ranked)||11||2||1||Missouri
|Blocked Kicks Allowed (127 ranked)||1||1||0||80 teams tied||0||6 teams tied||0|
|Blocked Punts (4 ranked)||Missouri
|Blocked Punts Allowed (127 ranked)||1||1||0||108 teams tied||0||9 teams tied||0|
|Completion Percentage (127 ranked)||45||4||0.653||Memphis||0.784||Western Ky.||0.719|
|Defensive TDs (4 ranked)||Buffalo
|Fewest Penalties (127 ranked)||48||5||17||Georgia Tech||6||North Texas||11|
|Fewest Penalties Per Game (127 ranked)||42||5||5.67||Georgia Tech||2.00||Old Dominion
|Fewest Penalty Yards (127 ranked)||62||6||164||Georgia Tech||54||Louisiana Tech||116|
|Fewest Penalty Yards Per Game (127 ranked)||55||5||54.67||Georgia Tech||18.00||Louisiana Tech||38.67|
|First Downs Defense (127 ranked)||22||1||44||Boston College||25||Rice||44|
|First Downs Offense (127 ranked)||5||1||86||Cincinnati||101||Rice||86|
|Fumbles Lost (123 ranked)||88||4||3||22 teams tied||0||Old Dominion||0|
|Fumbles Recovered (77 ranked)||4||1||4||Texas Tech
|Kickoff Return Defense (127 ranked)||115||11||26.92||La.-Monroe||11.82||Fla. Atlantic||17.60|
|Kickoff Returns (127 ranked)||8||2||31.00||Colorado St.||47.75||Western Ky.||32.83|
|Net Punting (127 ranked)||126||12||23.08||San Jose St.||46.94||FIU||40.78|
|Passes Had Intercepted (127 ranked)||90||10||4||13 teams tied||0||Old Dominion||1|
|Passes Intercepted (95 ranked)||72||6||2||6 teams tied||7||Middle Tenn.||7|
|Passing Offense (127 ranked)||55||7||249.7||Bowling Green||455.7||Western Ky.||378.0|
|Passing Yards Allowed (127 ranked)||62||3||210.0||Boston College||69.0||Marshall||170.7|
|Passing Yards per Completion (127 ranked)||74||7||11.70||Army West Point||22.67||Western Ky.||13.83|
|Punt Return Defense (127 ranked)||126||12||31.17||Louisville
|Punt Returns (127 ranked)||52||4||10.67||Buffalo||36.33||UTEP||24.00|
|Red Zone Defense (111 ranked)||68||7||0.833||Appalachian St.||0.000||Western Ky.||0.625|
|Red Zone Offense (127 ranked)||62||7||0.857||22 teams tied||1.000||North Texas
|Rushing Defense (127 ranked)||47||4||136.7||Boston College||37.3||FIU||96.3|
|Rushing Offense (127 ranked)||11||1||272.7||Navy||393.0||Rice||272.7|
|Sacks Allowed (126 ranked)||116||12||3.33||5 teams tied||0.00||UTEP
|Scoring Defense (127 ranked)||83||4||27.3||Northwestern||5.3||Marshall||19.7|
|Scoring Offense (127 ranked)||25||4||40.7||Ole Miss||64.0||Middle Tenn.||51.0|
|Tackles for Loss Allowed (127 ranked)||75||9||6.00||Miami (FL)
|Team Passing Efficiency (127 ranked)||56||5||141.55||West Virginia||199.91||Middle Tenn.||171.62|
|Team Passing Efficiency Defense (127 ranked)||111||9||153.31||Boston College||70.29||Marshall||94.80|
|Team Sacks (123 ranked)||74||6||1.67||Texas A&M||5.00||North Texas||3.00|
|Team Tackles for Loss (127 ranked)||77||5||5.7||Texas A&M||12.0||Southern Miss.||7.7|
|Time of Possession (127 ranked)||2||1||38:55||North Carolina St.||40:36||Rice||38:55|
|Total Defense (127 ranked)||51||4||346.7||Boston College||106.3||FIU||314.3|
|Total Offense (127 ranked)||18||3||522.3||Baylor||754.0||Louisiana Tech||539.3|
|Turnover Margin (127 ranked)||76||4||–0.33||Miami (FL)||2.67||Western Ky.
|Turnovers Gained (121 ranked)||31||3||6||Miami (FL)
|Turnovers Lost (126 ranked)||103||6||7||West Virginia
|Winning Percentage (117 ranked)||35||1||0.667||34 teams tied||1.000||7 teams tied||0.667
It’s Question Time!
FIRST: Hey, how are you feeling? You feeling like you got your edge?
SECOND: What is the one specific thing you’d like to see improvement in this week (if multiple, pick one)?
THIRD: You’ve seen the quote from a coach up north. Give me your reaction in .gif form.
FIFTH: What’s the weirdest/worst/whatever set of twins names you’ve ever seen/heard of? Alternatively, if you had twins, what would you name them?
FOURTH: Uniform Prediction. Go.