In Week 6 of the NFL season, the Denver Broncos took on the Jacksonville Jaguars as a record 28-point favorite. The Jags responded to that disrespect with a surprisingly competitive game, playing right with Denver late into the third quarter. The Broncos eventually won by 16, but it was still somewhat of a moral victory for Jacksonville. It doesn’t seem like much, but at least the Jags weren’t quite the living joke everyone thought they were.
The Baylor Bears head into this weekend as five-touchdown favorites over the Kansas Jayhawks, and this is at Memorial Stadium. It’s not a record, but it’s still a pretty big insult. Does KU deserve the disrespect of being 35.5-point underdogs at home?
Jayhawk football looks like it’s moving in the right direction, but there isn’t really anywhere for it to go but up. Kansas is still losing, but they’re looking better in their losses. Last week against the Oklahoma Sooners, KU took an early 13-point lead before eventually falling 34-19.
They’re still a bad team; they just seem less pathetic than they’ve been the past few seasons. The Jayhawks are on a 24-game losing streak against Big 12 competition with their last win coming against the Colorado Buffaloes in 2010. If they want respect, they’re going to have to take it, and they have the opportunity to do that on Saturday.
Kansas isn’t going to win, but they don’t necessarily have to. If they just surprise people with a good fight, they will not only be less of a punchline, but will also gain some much-needed confidence. It’s possible, but it won’t be easy against the Bears, who have scored at least 69 points in all but one of their six wins.
The good news for Kansas is that this is only the second matchup on the road for Baylor. Their only other away game was their closest contest, a 35-25 victory over the Kansas State Wildcats. Baylor has yet to play a formidable opponent, and with the exception of K-State, they’ve been slaughtering the weak.
There is a chance their eye-popping numbers are just as much about feeble competition as it is about their talent, but until the Jayhawks step up and prove they aren’t feeble competition, it’s fair to assume they’ll be the next to take a savage beating from the Bears.