Texas vs. Baylor: Live stream, watch online, TV channel, prediction, pick, spread, football game odds

Two in-state rivals from the Lone Star State will battle it out Saturday with conference championship implications hanging in the balance when No. 16 Baylor plays host to the Texas Longhorns in Waco, Texas. After going 2-7 in coach Dave Aranda’s first season, the Bears are off to a 6-1 start after beating No. 25 BYU 38-24 behind 188 yards and three touchdowns from running back Abram Smith. 

The Longhorns started the season 4-1 but have lost two straight games due to double-digit blown leads. Against No. 4 Oklahoma, the Horns squandered a 21-point advantage, the biggest Red River Showdown deficit surrendered in the history of the rivalry. A week later against No. 15 Oklahoma State, the Longhorns took a 14-point lead in the second quarter before getting outscored 29-7 the rest of the game. Texas is 1-3 against ranked opponents with the only win coming against then-No. 23 Louisiana in the opener.

Texas holds a 79-27-4 record in the historic matchup that dates back to the earliest days of the Southwest Conference. The Longhorns have won five of six against the Bears, but Baylor has won three of the last five games in Waco. A loss for either team could officially mean elimination from Big 12 title contention. 

Texas vs. Baylor: Need to know

Running back battle: Texas running back Bijan Robinson has been the class of college football in the season’s first half, rushing for 924 yards and 10 touchdowns in seven games. However, Baylor running back Abram Smith has quietly followed close behind, rushing for 785 yards and 10 touchdowns on 40 fewer carries. Robinson is a more powerful runner, but Smith’s fearlessness is the perfect fit for Baylor’s wide zone system, which helped the Bears jump from No. 123 to No. 9 nationally in rushing offense. 

Squandered leads: Texas has gone up double-figures in each of its last two games, only to blow those advantages down the stretch. The Longhorns were up 21 points against No. 4 Oklahoma in the Red River Showdown before surrendering the biggest lead in the rivalry’s history. Two weeks ago against defense-first No. 15 Oklahoma State, Texas blew a 14-point lead and was outscored 19-7 in the second half. The only Power Five opponent Texas has outscored in the second half is Texas Tech — and even that was only by a 28-21 margin. 

Defensive margin: Baylor coach Dave Aranda is one of the top defensive minds in college football, but the defensive gap between these two teams is stark. The Bears allow more than 100 fewer yards per game and 1.2 yards fewer per play than the Longhorns, which has given up more than 30 points in four out of five Power Five games this season. Texas has been especially susceptible to the run, allowing more than 200 yards per game and 5.2 yards per carry. The Longhorns defense will need to step up if it hopes to contain one of the most efficient offenses in college football. 

How to watch Texas vs. Baylor live

Date: Saturday, Oct. 30 | Time: 12 p.m. ET
Location: McLane Stadium — Waco, Texas
TV: ABC | Live stream: fuboTV (Try for free)

Texas vs. Baylor prediction, picks

Featured Game | Baylor Bears vs. Texas Longhorns

Baylor has been one of the most complete teams in the country, but Texas is the first time the Bears will play against blue-chip talent across the field. Still, if Texas’ woes against Oklahoma State and TCU are any indication, Baylor should be able to take advantage of a roster in transition. The game will be decided by which team can most effectively stop the run without committing extra help, and the Bears have done it more consistently. Prediction: Baylor (-2.5)

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