Five Things to Know: KU v. Baylor
Kickoff: 2:30 p.m. Saturday
Where: McLane Stadium, Waco, Texas
Radio: WHB (810 AM) in Kansas City, KFH (1240 AM) in Wichita
The line: Baylor by 7 1/2
Which do you trust more, this year’s results or that of recent history?
That’s the question one must answer when making a pick for this KU-Baylor game. Before the season started, I would have expected this line to be in the 14- to 17-point range, meaning KU has gained a lot of ground (and maybe Baylor has lost some too) in the span of three weeks.
Yet ... there’s all sorts of negative history that’s still hanging over KU. The Jayhawks have not won a road Big 12 game since October 2008. They’ve only previously been a single-digit underdog once in their last 30 conference road games, and even then, they only went 9-21 against the spread in those contests.
Baylor also has crushed KU any time the teams have played lately. Coach David Beaty has suffered 66-7, 49-7 and 38-9 defeats to the Bears, and the Jayhawks also have been outscored 205-42 during their last four trips to Waco.
To me, this comes down to how well KU’s defense plays. The Jayhawks, in years past, have never been able to counter the Bears’ speed outside, though improved secondary depth this year should give them a better chance. KU’s offense, meanwhile, will have to prove it can throw the ball, which it hasn’t had to do the last two weeks.
In the end, I like Baylor for the win and cover. Even if KU’s defense performs better than previous seasons, I could see Baylor’s offense breaking enough big plays to outpace a KU offense that is still likely to struggle at times.
Baylor 34, KU 17