[3:30 PM] #7 Xavier @ #9 Baylor

Who will WIN this matchup?

#7 Xavier Musketeers (7-0)

@ #9 Baylor Bears (7-0)


The line for this game is Baylor by 5.5 points.

No. 11 Baylor attempts to knock off its fourth ranked team in the first month of the season when the Bears host No. 7 Xavier on Saturday afternoon in one of the nation’s marquee matchups of the weekend. Baylor boasts wins over Oregon, Michigan State and Louisville – the final two while winning the Battle 4 Atlantis – and will be tested by one of the country’s most talented backcourt trios.

Bluiett, who scored 23 against North Dakota State, leads the team at 17.7 points per game while Macura (16.7) has drained a team-high 14 from 3-point range and Sumner (14.6) is averaging a team-best 4.6 assists. The Musketeers are getting deeper on the front line as sophomore Kaiser Gates has provided six points, five rebounds and a block in limited action over two games since returning from a knee injury.

Motley leads the way while shooting 50 percent from the field and has gotten help inside from 7-0 junior Jo Lual-Acuil Jr., who averages 9.3 points with team highs in rebounds (8.4) and blocks (29). Junior guard Manu Lecomte (12.4 points per game), a transfer from Miami (Fla.), leads the team at 5.3 assists per game but has struggled offensively after a fast start while averaging seven points in the last three. Junior guard Al Freeman also scores 11.9 per contest for the Bears, who are allowing 58.7 points and 39.1 percent shooting over the first seven games.

Baylor has won 37 straight home non-conference contests and Xavier is on a 21-game winning streak against non-league teams overall.

Xavier’s 6-10 junior F Sean O’Mara is averaging 8.1 points and shooting 62.5 percent from the field.

The Bears have won both previous meetings, including a 75-70 triumph in a regional semifinal during the 2012 NCAA Tournament.


StreakSmarts Pick: Baylor Bears

Confidence: 5/10

StreakSmarter Pick