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There’s a big top 5 showdown taking place tonight in Waco as #5 Baylor hosts in-state and former Big 12 rival #4 Texas A&M with first serve going up at 6pm central. Neither team has faced a top 25 opponent yet though Baylor was tested during the Kick-Off Weekend by Oregon.

#4 Texas A&M (4-0) at #5 Baylor (5-0) – 7pm est/6pm cst  Live Scoring/Live Blog/Live Video (Indoors) – This will be Texas A&M’s first match since its Kick-Off Weekend wins over Fresno State and Boise State while Baylor is coming off wins over Midwestern State (D2), Prairie View A&M (SWAC), and Incarnate Word (Southland). This will be the first meeting between the two since they played in the Round of 16 at the 2014 National Team Indoors in Houston. Baylor won that meeting 4-3 but Julian Lenz is the only current member that was part of that team while Harrison Adams, Shane Vinsant, and Jackson Withrow were the only current Aggies on the team back then. 

Baylor has a thin roster this season with only 7 guys listed and Vince Schneider, who would play at #3 or #4, hasn’t suited up yet and may not today. Baylor’s biggest weakness by far and away is #6 singles – so far this season Tommy Podvinski is 2-3 with losses against UC Irvine, Oregon, and D2 Midwestern State and both of his wins over Prairie View and IC were third set supertiebreaks.

Texas A&M is one of the favorites, if not the favorite, to win the SEC this year but this will be the first time this season that they’ve seen equal talent on the other side of the net. 

Doubles Records: Texas A&M 4-0, Baylor 4-1

Projected Singles Lineup:
1. #5 Arthur Rinderknech (aTm 14.53) vs. Julian Lenz (BU 14.72)
2. #29 Shane Vinsant (aTm 14.08) vs. #59 Max Tchoutakian (BU 13.90)
3. Jordi Arconada (aTm 13.81) vs. Felipe Rios (BU 14.26)
4. Harrison Adams (aTm 12.98) vs. Will Little (BU 13.67)
5. AJ Catanzariti (aTm 13.43) vs. Jimmy Bendeck (BU 13.49)
6. Max Lunkin (aTm 13.44) vs. Tommy Podvinski (BU 11.75)
O: Jackson Withrow (aTm 14.13/30%); Vince Schneider (BU 13.82)

Baylor might be at home but I’d consider them the underdog and if they want to have any chance of winning they have to take the doubles point. Baylor might take one of the doubles courts but I think A&M gets the others and takes the early 1-0 lead. The only singles matchup that is a slam dunk is at #6 – Texas A&M’s Max Lunkin or Jackson Withrow should roll over the struggling Tommy Podinksi. I think the other 5 could really go either way but I’ll take Rinderknech, Vinsant, and Catanzariti at 1, 2, and 5 for A&M and Rios and Little at 3 and 4 for BU. Baylor has the talent to win but I haven’t seen enough yet to pick them. Prediction: Texas A&M 5-2