Baylor Bears

Baylor vs. Oklahoma: Preview and Prediction

Here is everything you need to know about the upcoming matchup between the Baylor Bears and the Oklahoma Sooners.

GAME INFO

Saturday, November 5, 2022; 2:00 p.m. CT; Oklahoma Memorial Stadium; Norman, Oklahoma

TV: 

Radio: Baylor Sports Network (John Morris, J.J. Joe, Ricky Thompson); Sooner Sports Radio (Toby Rowland, Teddy Lehman, Gabe Ikard, Chris Plank)

Records: Baylor (5-3, 3-2); Oklahoma (5-3, 2-3)

Rankings: Both teams unranked

Last Week: Oklahoma 27, Iowa State 13; Baylor 45, Texas Tech 17

Series History: Oklahoma leads 28-4

Last Meeting: Baylor 27, Oklahoma 14 (2021)

Favorite: Oklahoma (-3.5)

Fun Fact: Oklahoma has won 24 of its last 26 November games with 11 of those wins coming against AP Top 25 teams. The two losses came last year, 27-14 at Baylor and 37-33 at Oklahoma State. Prior to last year’s Baylor contest, OU’s last November loss was in 2014 against Baylor in Norman. The Sooners have won their last 13 November home games.

 

KEY PLAYERS

Baylor Bears

RB Richard Reese

Freshman running back Richard Reese is no longer a secret weapon for the Baylor Bears as he has made a name for himself as one of the top running backs in the Big 12 in 2022. Reese leads the Big 12 with 12 rushing touchdowns, which is good for seventh nationally. He ranks 20th nationally with 791 rushing yards, good for fifth in the Big 12, and is averaging 5.20 yards per carry. Baylor’s offense on Saturday will run through Reese and behind a veteran offensive line. If Oklahoma can’t find a way to stop the run, Richard Reese will have a great day in Norman.

S Al Walcott

Senior safety Al Walcott has become a do-it-all player for the Bears in 2022 and is coming off a game against Texas Tech in which he recorded his first interception of the year. Walcott has recorded four PBUs on the year, as well as one sack and one forced fumble. Walcott also leads the Bears in tackles with 48, including 22 solo stops. Walcott will be busy on Saturday in run fits as the Oklahoma offense averages 217.5 rushing yards per game, good for third in the Big 12 and 16th nationally.

 

Oklahoma Sooners

WR Marvin Mims

Oklahoma wide receiver Marvin Mims has been the Sooners’ top pass-catching threat in 2022 but is coming off of one of the most disappointing games of his career at OU. Mims dropped two would-be touchdown passes and one third-and-long conversion. On six targets, Mims recorded just two receptions for 16 yards, which is a career-low in a game in which he had five targets. This week, I expect offensive coordinator Jeff Lebby to get Mims involved early and often, as he should. Mims is one of the best athletes on the field at any given time and a bounce-back game against Baylor is something to watch for.

LB DaShaun White

Fifth-year senior linebacker DaShaun White has put together some of the best football of his career in back-to-back games. Against Kansas, White recorded eight tackles, one PBU, and the first interception of his career. Then, on Saturday against Iowa State, White recorded a career-best 14 tackles, including 1.5 tackles for loss. White has been playing the cheetah position for Oklahoma in 2022, a pivotal position in Brent Venables’ defensive scheme. His play going down the stretch will be very important for the Sooners, including on Saturday against Baylor.

 

KEY STORYLINES

Baylor Bears

Can Baylor keep the momentum rolling from last week’s win over Texas Tech? Through the year, both Baylor and Oklahoma have been inconsistent, but the team that we just saw dispatch Texas Tech in Lubbock is capable of playing for a Big 12 Championship. If that is the team that shows up in Norman, the Bears have to feel good about their chances. However, if we see the Baylor team that showed up in Morgantown or against Oklahoma State, they could give Oklahoma the momentum to roll on to a third-straight win.

Oklahoma Sooners

Was the Oklahoma defense that we saw in Ames an improved unit or just a result of playing a bad Iowa State offense? The answer probably lies somewhere in the middle, but even a little improvement would go a long way in helping the Sooners be competitive for the remainder of the season. Oklahoma’s defense has struggled with physicality and adjusting to presnap motion this season, both of which I expect to see Baylor OC Jeff Grimes throw at the Sooners on Saturday. If they regress to playing defense the way that they did prior to last week, it will be a long day in Norman.

PREDICTION: OKLAHOMA 31, BAYLOR 27

I’m not really sure what it is, but I feel that Oklahoma is going to go on a bit of a run to end the year. The Sooners are just a few weeks removed from being in the middle of a three-game losing streak, but the team that we saw come out of the bye week against Iowa State was more physical and sound on both sides of the ball. Oklahoma’s running game has been impressive, and its rushing defense is coming off one of its better performances of the year. I think those two things hold true and they find a way to get it done against Baylor in front of a rowdy home crowd in Norman.

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