Football

Texas Power 5 football previews: Can Baylor get back on track?

No. 25 Baylor will visit No. 9 Oklahoma on Saturday hoping to end a two-game slide after starting the season 6-0. The Sooners are undefeated in conference after losing two of their first three games.
No. 25 Baylor will visit No. 9 Oklahoma on Saturday hoping to end a two-game slide after starting the season 6-0. The Sooners are undefeated in conference after losing two of their first three games. AP

Baylor (6-2, 3-2 Big 12) at No. 11 Oklahoma (7-2, 6-0) (11 a.m. Saturday, WFAA/Ch. 8): Baylor fell hard after its 6-0 start. The Bears have faced much off-field controversy and a constant barrage of media scrutiny after the scandalous exit of coach Art Briles, sexual assault issues, and Title IX investigations. Up until two weeks ago, however, the team was able to perform on the field amid the distractions. But after losses to Texas and TCU, Baylor’s season is at a crucial crossroads. The Bears could pull together, upset Oklahoma on the road, and regain their footing. But another loss could send the team spiraling with games against Kansas State, Texas Tech and at West Virginia still on the schedule.

No. 16 West Virginia (7-1, 4-1 Big 12) at Texas (5-4, 3-3) (11 a.m. Saturday, FS1): Texas has played much better defense the past two weeks in wins against Baylor and Texas Tech. Texas running back D’Onta Foreman has emerged with 1,446 rushing yards and 13 touchdowns. Texas has worked hard to climb above .500, temporarily quelling doubts about coach Charlie Strong. But the Longhorns need to keep winning.

Texas Tech (4-5, 2-4 Big 12) at No. 13 Oklahoma State (7-2, 5-1) (2:30 p.m. Saturday, FS1): Texas Tech is reeling after its 45-37 loss to Texas in Lubbock. The Red Raiders have been abysmal on defense. Texas Tech is allowing 41.8 points (124th nationally) and 534 yards (126th) per game. Oklahoma State is slightly better on defense, but the Red Raiders will put pressure on the Cowboys secondary. This game could quickly morph into another classic Big 12 shootout.

Ole Miss (4-5, 1-4 SEC) at No. 8 Texas A&M (7-2, 4-2) (6:30 p.m. Saturday, SEC Network): Both teams will roll out backup quarterbacks after Texas A&M’s Trevor Knight injured his shoulder last week in a road loss to Mississippi State and Ole Miss’ Chad Kelly suffered collegiate career-ending knee injury. Rebels QB Jason Pellerin finished last week’s game, a 10-point win against Georgia Southern, but Ole Miss will now turn to true freshman Shea Patterson, a five-star recruit who intended to redshirt this season. Jake Hubenak, who started the Aggies’ bowl game last season, will get the start for A&M.

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