Two of college football’s most surprising teams step onto the gridiron at the Superdome in New Orleans on Saturday when the Baylor Bears and Ole Miss Rebels throw down in the 2021 Sugar Bowl. Baylor won the Big 12 after beating Oklahoma State in the championship. Ole Miss played great in 2021, losing just 2 games this season to Arkansas and Alabama. Which team gets it done in Saturday’s prime time affair? Check out NCAAF odds, analysis, and a free pick for Baylor versus Mississippi.
Baylor vs. Ole Miss 2022 Sugar Bowl Game Information
- When: Sat, Dec. 30 at 8:45 pm ET
- Where: Caesars Superdome, New Orleans, Louisiana
- TV: ESPN
- Radio: ESPN 1420 AM (Baylor) / WUMS-FM 92.1 Rebel Radio (Ole Miss)
- Live Stream: WatchESPN
- College Football Odds: Baylor (+2.5) / Ole Miss (-2.5)
Why Bet on the Baylor Bears?
As the season continued, Baylor’s offense got better and better. The Bears became a machine. So much so that even when starting quarterback Gerry Bohannon went down with an injury, the Bears continued to flourish.
Baylor averages 430.9 total yards per game. The Bears are one of the top rushing teams in the nation, averaging 214.9 each contest. Abram Smith ran for 1,429 yards and scored 12 touchdowns. Bohannon might play, but even if he doesn’t, back up Blake Shapen has proven capable. The Bears are also incredibly disciplined. The offense is one of the least penalized in the country.
Dave Aranda is a defense first coach, which is one of the reasons Baylor’s D become the best in the Big 12. The Bears allow just 350 total yards per game. Opponents average only 19.2 points. Also, the Bears are good at taking the ball away. Baylor had 16 takeaways during the regular season, ranking ninth in the category. JT Woods led the takeaway brigade with 3 interceptions.
Why Bet on the Ole Miss Rebels?
Led by quarterback Matt Corral, Mississippi’s offense is one of the best in the nation. The Rebels average 506.6 yards per game, ranking fourth in the country. Ole Miss averages 35.9 points each game. The offense turned the ball over just 4 times. When it comes to Corral, few quarterbacks had as good of a season.
Corral threw for 3,333 yards. He completed 68.3% of passes. He also rushed for 597 yards and scored 11 rushing touchdowns. As a team, the Rebels averaged 224.7 rushing yards per game.
The Rebels’ defense isn’t as good as Baylor’s. Ole Miss allows over 428 yards every time it steps onto the field, ranking one-hundred and first in the nation. But although Mississippi does give up a ton of yards, the Bears don’t allow that many points. Opponents averaged just 25 points per game versus the Rebels. Also, Ole Miss has a top pass rusher in Sam Williams. Williams recorded 12.5 sacks this season.
Baylor vs. Ole Miss Betting Trends
- Bears are 9-3 ATS in their last 12 games.
- Baylor is 5-12-1 ATS in their last 18 non-conference games.
- Under is 4-0 in Baylor’s last 4 games.
- Rebels are 6-1-1 ATS in their last 8 bowl games.
- Ole Miss is 5-2 ATS in their last 7 games.
- Under is 7-0 in the Rebels’ last 7 games.
Baylor vs. Ole Miss Expert Betting Predictions
David Aranda’s squad is very disciplined. Not only that, but Baylor has a good defense and excellent rushing attack. Whether Bohannon plays or not, the Bears should be in line for a Sugar Bowl victory.
But before we hand the Jan. 1 game to Baylor, it’s important to note that when playing away from home, the Bears aren’t nearly as solid as they are on their field. TCU upset the Bears in a Big 12 game that was the difference between Baylor possibly making it to the College Football Playoff and not. Horned Frogs’ quarterback Chris Morris threw for over 406 yards. He also rushed for 70 yards and a TD.
Lane Kiffin’s game plan will be for Coral to rush the ball as well as throw it. That should keep Baylor’s defense on its toes. When the Bears have the ball, they will find success rushing it, but Ole Miss’ strategy on defense is to hold opponents to 3 points.
So once Baylor gets in the red zone, the Rebels will tighten. Also, neither Ben Shapen nor Gerry Bohannon has faced a pass rusher as talented as Sam Williams. All of it adds up to a much easier Mississippi victory than the odds indicate.
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*All odds stated are subject to change without prior notice.