|2014 Fox Sports 1 College Football Week 1 Odds: SMU vs. Baylor|
|Written by Drew Sharper|
|Sunday, 31 August 2014 12:30|
SMU vs. Baylor Odds
Baylor is coming off an 11-2 season in 2013, which included a Big 12 Championship. SMU was just 5-7 last season and 4-4 in the American Conference. These two met last year with Baylor picking up a 59-24 victory.
Trends show that Baylor has covered the spread in four straight against SMU and the Bears are 4-1 against the spread in their last 5 non-conference games. SMU is just 7-18-1 ATS in its last 26 games against Big 12 opponents.
According to oddsmakers from Bovada.lv, Baylor is heavily favored in today’s game, as the Bears have odds of -34 points against the Mustangs. The over/under total for this game has been set at 75 points (View Matchup). The opening odds for this game had Baylor favored by 32 points. The spread hit a low of 31.5 points before climbing to its peak at -34. The over/under total opened at 74 points and dropped to a low of 73 during the week before moving up to 75.
Baylor had the top offense in the nation last year, averaging 52.4 points and 618.8 yards per game. The offense shouldn’t slow down too much, thanks to having Bryce Petty back at quarterback. He threw for 4,200 yards and 32 touchdowns last year with only three interceptions. One concern for the Baylor offense is the line, which is replacing four starters. Defensively, Baylor gave up just 23.5 points per game in 2013. The defense has just four starters back, but has a solid junior defensive end moving into the lineup. Jamal Palmer will start at defensive end after picking up five sacks last year, most of any returning defender.
SMU has some new pieces to work in this year if the Mustangs are going to improve on the 5-7 record in 2013. Offensively, the Mustangs struggled last year, averaging just 26.8 points per game, which is low for a June Jones program. Taking over at quarterback this year is Neal Burcham, a sophomore that saw limited action last year. He has some strong linemen in front of him and an experienced group of receivers to work with, led by Darius Joseph, who caught 103 passes in 2013. On defense, SMU returns its entire front line, and also has two linebackers that starters a year ago. Jonathan Yenga, an inside backer, will lead the defense. He had six sacks a year ago.
In terms of Injuries, Baylor receiver Clay Fuller is out with a collarbone, while receiver Corey Coleman is questionable with a hamstring injury. SMU defensive back J.R. Richardson is questionable for the game because of an illness.
The Public Bets are backing Baylor for this game, as the Bears are getting 81% of the wagers with odds of -34 points against SMU on Sunday night.