Baylor, in its first year under head coach Dave Aranda, has not performed as hoped on defense while the offense has fallen even further behind. As the longtime defensive coordinator for the LSU Tigers, Aranda deployed a consistently effective, creative unit that took full advantage of the cavalcade of talent in Baton Rouge. Baylor doesn’t have nearly the same caliber of defenders, but that alone doesn’t account for all of the issues Aranda’s defense.
The Bears could cover up some of those problems if the offense improves its play. Four-year starter Charlie Brewer has already tossed three picks and seen his passing efficiency plummet compared to previous seasons (5.9 yards per attempt entering the week). Brewer’s legs also haven’t factored into the game as much as in past years. He has yet to score a rushing touchdown and he barely registers a positive rushing average (0.2 yards per attempt).
Things have gone much smoother in Ames where Iowa State boasts a 4-2 record with the most recent loss coming by three points at No. 6 ranked Oklahoma State. Quarterback Brock Purdy hasn’t taken a leap from a year ago, but he remains a consistent presence for the Cyclones both as a passer and a runner.
But unlike in past seasons, running back Breece Hall has taken centerstage for Iowa State. Already, Hall has amassed 901 yards and 11 touchdowns on the ground, both career highs with several games left to go. The sophomore has put himself on the periphery of the Heisman Trophy conversation and given the Cyclones a chance at taking out any program in the Big-12.
Game Time/TV Channel/Streaming
You can watch Baylor versus Iowa State on Saturday, Nov. 7 at 7 p.m. ET on FS1, or you can stream it via the Fox Sports App with a cable or streaming service login.
Point Spread, Totals, Odds, Trends
Point spread: Baylor vs. Iowa State (-14)
Point Total: Over 47
Money line: Baylor (+425), Iowa State (-590)
• Baylor has gone 12-13-2 against the spread since 2015 as the road team.
• The Bears have also failed to hit the over as the road team 16 times in 27 tries as the road team during the same period.
• Iowa State has done a stellar job against the spread at home since 2015, sporting a 22-14-0 record in those games.
• The Cyclones have produced more mixed results in terms of total points, going 17-17-2 hitting the over during that stretch.
Baylor +14: (31% of handle, 46% percent of bets)
Iowa State -14: (69% of handle, 54% percent of bets)
The Best Bet
Despite the 14-point spread, Iowa State has a strong enough track record covering in recent seasons to feel confident. That Baylor continues to find its footing under Aranda doesn’t hurt that thinking.
Pick: Iowa State -14
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