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Baylor Football

Baylor's Five Most Difficult Games of the 2019 Season

January 23, 2019

There are 220 days until Baylor’s first football game of the 2019 season. Needless to say, it’s right around the corner and we’ll wake up tomorow and begin preparing for the tailgates. 

In comparison to the 2018 season, the Bears will have a few more favorable matchups next fall as the most challenging Big 12 contests will be at home. 

  • Aug.  31              Stephen F. Austin
  • Sept.   7               UTSA
  • Sept. 21           @Rice
  • Sept. 28               Iowa State
  • Oct.     5           @Kansas State
  • Oct.   12              Texas Tech
  • Oct.   19           @Oklahoma State
  • Oct.   31              West Virginia
  • Nov.    9           @TCU
  • Nov.  16              Oklahoma
  • Nov.  23              Texas
  • Nov.  30           @Kansas

With all four of their road losses last season against Oklahoma, Texas, West Virginia and Iowa State in Waco, the flipped schedule will play a huge role in regards to how 2019 could pan out. Road games against Rice, Kansas State, Oklahoma State, TCU and Kansas, three opponents which the Bears defeated in Waco in 2019, are all games which fans should feel reasonably confident with.

The more difficult matchups fall in the latter half of the season, providing an opportunity to lock up  a strong record out of the gate.

Taking everything from location, coaching staff changes and players coming in and out of programs into account, here are Baylor’s top 5 most difficult games of the 2019 season.

5. West Virginia, Waco, October 31st

The Bears have struggled against the Mountaineers as they have won only twice in seven attempts against them since West Virginia entered the Big 12 in 2012. It’s no question that West Virginia will not be as strong of a team as they were last season and their recruiting has been middle of the road in the conference as well, but the Bears have struggled against the Mountaineers with three straight losses. After a 58-14 loss on the road last season, the Bears will need to flip the script for this game if they want to be contenders in the Big 12. Outisde of a loss at home in 2017, the trend for the Bears had been to win at home and lose on the road from 2012-2016. The Bears will need to minimize their turnovers this time around and utilize their home field advantage if they want to finally go back to beating the Mountaineers at home.

4. Oklahoma State, Stillwater, October 19th

The exciting game against Oklahoma State last season is precisely why this game makes this list. At the homecoming game last season, the Bears fought back from down 31-21 to beat Oklahoma State 35-31 on a last second touchdown by Denzel Mims. With similar talent across the board,  the Bears and Cowboys could have another showdown this season as they did in Waco last season. The Bears will have a bit more experience, but with the game being on the road it could be a tough test for the Bears. It will also be Baylor’s toughest game at this point of the season, so it will give Baylor fans a general understanding of just how good this team can be.

3. TCU, Fort Worth, November 9th

Every Baylor fan wants to erase the memory of the 16-9 loss at home against TCU this past season. It was a tough game to watch and the Bears just could not seem to get anything going offensively. The last time Baylor beat TCU on the road in 2013 when the 9th ranked Bears won 41-38. The Bears have not found victory over TCU since their historical 61-58 win in Waco in 2014, a span of four years without a win. Baylor will have to use their experience to go into Fort Worth and finally gain back the feeling of taking down the Horned Frogs on their turf.

2. Texas, Waco, November 23rd

Tom Herman seems to have pulled the Texas Longhorns back to where many expect them to be and will be as big of a challenge for the Bears as they have been in quite some time. With the 5th ranked recruiting class in the nation, a returning starting quarterback, and momentum coming off of a strong season that was capped off with a bowl victory over Georgia, the Longhorns will be a tough team to beat.  The Bears did give them a run for their money last season in Austin and even had opportunities throughout the game to pull off the upset, but the Bears ultimately lost in Austin 23-17. It will be just a week following their game against Oklahoma again in 2019, a variable that could be a good or bad thing depending on how the game goes. If the Bears can build off of their loss last season and ride their own home crowd momentum , they could ruin Texas’ hopes and dreams of making the college football playoff.

1. Oklahoma, Waco, November 16th

This one should be a no brainer for all Baylor fans. After suffering a brutal loss to Oklahoma and Kyler Murray’s electric offense last season 66-33 in Norman, this game will be a huge test for the Bears. Oklahoma will have yet another strong recruiting class that ranks 4th in the nation, but the key addition is former Alabama quarterback Jalen Hurts. If the trend continues, there could be another transfer Heisman quarterback having a sensational season at Oklahoma. Coming into this game, the Bears very easily could be sitting somewhere around seven wins. With a confident and experienced team, the Bears will need to get off to a better start than they did last season to get control of this game early and hold onto the lead. It will be much easier to do just that in Waco.

The Baylor Bears bounced back after a tough 1-11 season by going 7-6 and winning a bowl game. With Matt Rhule returning, a promising recruiting class coming in and the retainment of the majority of their starters, the Bears will look to improve upon their tremendous comeback season.

They will need to grab some wins out of these tough games if they want to improve upon their 7-6 record last season. I would expect the Bears to at least get two wins out of these games, but I think they will get three wins.

Which of these games do you think the Bears will win and lose? 

Tags: Football, Baylor, 2019
Discussion from...

Baylor's Five Most Difficult Games of the 2019 Season

Grizz Air
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I think we will beat WVU and TCU, and lose to the other 3. I think we will play the whorns close though. Within a touchdown. And i think we play OU to within two TDs, which is pretty good considering the egg we laid this year.
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WVU and Ok St are the best shots for wins. TCU returns most of their defense, plus the game is in Cowtown.
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Aside from Oklahoma, Texas, Kansas State, and Kansas, it's really hard to tell at this point how to rank the remaining opponents in terms of difficulty - the coaches of TCU, Oklahoma State, and ISU have earned the benefit of the doubt, Tech has a high end QB and WVU has a QB from OU's QB factory. Honestly, any of those 5 teams could find a way to put it together and field solid teams.

Personally, I would defer to the reputations (and records) of the coaches at TCU, Oklahoma State, and Iowa State and assume that those games would be the toughest after OU and UT, especially given the uncertainty at WVU and Tech in regard to what to expect.
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