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Bears, Longhorns Both Look to Bounce Back From Tough Defeats

Rebounding may be a basketball stat, but whoever bounces back the best from a devastating loss could go a long way toward deciding Saturday’s clash between Texas and Baylor. The Bears blew a 25-point lead last week in a loss to Oklahoma that ended their perfect season, while Texas lost on a last-second field goal to be eliminated from Big 12 title contention.

Matchup Information
  • Texas Longhorns vs Baylor Bears (Matchup Report)
  • Date/Time: November 23, 3:30 p.m. ET
  • TV Coverage: FS1
  • Opening Odds: Baylor -5 | O/U 59.5 (Line History)

Opening Odds Analysis

This 5-point spread suggests a tight game, and that’d be nothing new to either Baylor or Texas. Four of the Bears’ last five games have been decided by one possession, while three of Texas’ last four were decided by a field goal or less.

Texas News & Notes

Pass defense has been the Longhorns’ Achilles heel all season, so it’s only fitting that it ultimately cost them a chance to reach the Big 12 title game. Leading 21-20 with three minutes left in regulation at Iowa State, Texas allowed the Cyclones to march 63 yards and kick a game-winning 36-yard field goal at the gun. Brock Purdy completed his first three passes on the drive for 41 yards, part of a 354-yard afternoon for the Iowa State quarterback.

Making the loss even more difficult to swallow for the ’Horns was that Iowa State missed a 42-yard field goal earlier in the drive before a Longhorns offside penalty gave the Cyclones a first down.

Still, giving up just 23 points in Ames should have been enough for the Longhorns to pull out the victory, something Texas coach Tom Herman was well aware of after the game. “Really, really poor performance by our offense the first two quarters,” said Herman, who was particularly upset with a running game that managed just 54 yards in the game.

Texas will need to be sharper in that department this week, especially facing Baylor’s 39th-ranked run defense.

Baylor News & Notes

Comeback kids the previous week in an overtime win at TCU, Baylor got a taste of the other side of things last week against Oklahoma. After racing out to a 28-3 lead in the second quarter, the Bears watched Oklahoma storm back with 24 unanswered points in the second half to edge Baylor 34-31.

The Bears offense played a role in the collapse, gaining just 35 second-half yards until late in the fourth quarter and then turning the ball over on a last-minute drive in an attempt to tie the game. But the vaunted Baylor D, which had allowed just 19 points per game coming into the contest, couldn’t get a stop when it needed one in the second half.

The loss essentially ended any faint hope the Bears may have had of getting to the national playoff, but Baylor head coach Matt Rhule chose to focus on the potential benefit of it. “Hopefully we’ll come back next week rejuvenated (and) learn from it with a chance to play these guys again sometime down the road,” Rhule said, referring to a potential rematch with Oklahoma in the Big 12 championship game.

The Bears can also take some solace from playing Oklahoma tougher than expected, easily covering the spread as 10.5-point dogs and improving to 5-2 ATS in their last seven.

Betting Pick: Longhorns +5

Only three of Baylor’s last six wins have come by more than this point spread, and one of those came in overtime. I like the ’Horns to move to 8-3 ATS in the last 11 meetings between these in-state rivals.

Shark Bites
  • Texas is 7-2 ATS in its last 9 games on the road vs teams with winning records.
  • The total has gone UNDER in 8 of Baylor’s last 11 games vs Big 12 opponents.
  • The total has gone UNDER in Texas’ last 6 games vs Baylor.