BAYLOR VS. DUKE PREVIEW: A better-than-expected football game

Bears wide receiver Denzel Mims (15) heads to the endzone for a touchdown as he gets past Duke Blue Devils cornerback Mark Gilbert (28) in the first half of their game at Wallace Wade Stadium.Mark Dolejs-USA TODAY Sports

Bears and Blue Devils will each be trying to get to 3-0 on the season.

Baylor hosts Duke at 2:30 on Saturday in a matchup that earned prime placement on FS1.

It's a crucial nonconference game for both the Bears and Blue Devils as the winner will move to a perfect 3-0 in out-of-league action.

Would we still rather see these two schools face off on the basketball court like they did in the Elite 8 in 2010? Yeah, of course. But it's an intriguing football game too.

Here are some of the particulars:

SERIES HISTORY: Duke leads the all-time series with Baylor, 2-0. The Blue Devils defeated the Bears, 12-7, in 1958 and again last season, 34-20, both times in Durham, North Carolina.

QUOTE TO NOTE: "Most importantly up front on the offensive line, we have to play significantly better against an outstanding Duke defensive line. I know there are going to be lots of story lines in this game, but to me the biggest one is they have an All-American, all-everything defensive end in Victor Dimukeje.” – Baylor coach Matt Rhule on the key matchup this week versus the Blue Devils.

KEY MATCHUP: Baylor front seven versus Duke dual-threat quarterback Quentin Harris. Duke starting QB Daniel Jones suffered a collarbone injury in the Blue Devils’ win over Northwestern. That shifts the focus to Harris, a junior with limited playing time. But Baylor has showed a tendency to give up big plays, which could boost Harris’s confidence. Baylor’s best-case scenario is to make life as a starter rough on the Duke QB.

ROSTER REPORT:

QB Charlie Brewer injured his back in the season-opener versus Abilene Christian, but bounced back to pass for 328 yards and 3 TDs against UTSA.

LB Clay Johnston, a junior who suffered a broken hand that ended his season in 2018, had an undisclosed injury in the preseason. He returned to the field and made five tackles versus UTSA.

LT Josh Malin was helped off the field versus Abilene Christian with a knee injury. Mallin has been diagnosed with a sprained MCL and will miss at least four weeks.

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