Big 12 newcomer Houston at Baylor for 1st meeting since the final SWC season in 1995
Thu, Nov 2, 2023
NCAAF News (AP)
Houston (3-5, 1-4 Big 12) at Baylor (3-5, 2-3), 3:30 p.m. ET Saturday (ESPN+)
Line: Baylor by 3 .5, according to FanDuel Sportsbook.
Series record: Baylor leads 14-13-1.
WHAT'S AT STAKE?
With the Cougars in their first Big 12 season, this will be the first meeting between the schools since Baylor won 47-7 in Houston's Astrodome in 1995, the final season of the Southwest Conference. A hastily arranged game in 2020, after both teams' season openers were canceled due to the pandemic, got called off a day before it was scheduled when Baylor didn't meet Big 12 COVID-19 thresholds for playing. Cougars coach Dana Holgorsen then sent a tweet that read "We were ready and we will stay ready... #GoCoogs #%$@&$" above a photo with his school's equipment truck parked outside Baylor's stadium.
Houston receivers against Baylor defense. Samuel Brown (5.63 catches per game), Joseph Manjack IV (5.0) and Matthew Golden (4.63) are all among the Big 12's top nine in receptions per game. Brown leads the league with 45 total receptions and his 84.75 yards receiving per game. Golden has six TDs this season, and 11 in his past 13 games. The Bears are third in the Big 12 allowing only 204.1 yards per game, but are 13th in pass efficiency defensive since they have allowed 12 touchdowns with only five interceptions. Opposing QBs have completed 62% of their passes against them.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Houston: Sophomore free safety A.J. Haulcy and senior linebacker Malik Robinson are tied for seventh in the Big 12 with 7.63 tackles per game. They both have 61 tackles, but Haulcy has 45 solo stops to rank eighth nationally with 5.6 solos a game. Robinson has 29 solo tackles and 32 assists.
Baylor: Since back-to-back games without a catch, junior WR Monaray Baldwin has 28 catches for 523 yards over the past five games. He has three 100-yard games in that stretch, with a TD in each of those three games.
FACTS & FIGURES
Baylor's only conference wins this season are against Big 12 newcomers UCF and Cincinnati. Houston is coming off a 41-0 loss at reigning Big 12 champion Kansas State, a week after taking seventh-ranked Texas to the wire. ... The Bears play the seventh of their record eight home games this season. They are 1-5 at McLane Stadium ... Houston is 0-3 on the road this season after leading the nation with a combined 10 road wins in 2021 and 2022.
AP college football: https://apnews.com/hub/college-football and https://apnews.com/hub/ap-top-25-college-football-poll"