The first Big 12 road game went pretty much as expected for the Baylor Bears as they dominated the overmatched Kansas Jayhawks 66-7. The Bears did exactly what they wanted to in this game, taking control of the game in the first quarter, getting invaluable experience for the second-team players and not making costly mistakes.
What to take away from Baylor’s performance
- It was something I’d predicted would happen eventually, and we finally got to see TE LaQuan McGowan’s second TD reception. A 6’7” 410 pound converted lineman scoring a touchdown is not something you see every day, and if you’re the safety caught in the path of the lumbering giant, I’m sure it’s something you never want to see again. The designed pass play to McGowan had him pretend to act as a lead blocker for a run play up the middle. After “missing” a block on the linebacker, McGowan caught the pass from QB Seth Russell and had only Kansas safety Michael Glatcazak between him and the goal line. Glatczak, at 5’10” and 173 lbs, now had to stop the barreling TE 200 lbs heavier then him. With few options he dove for McGowan’s legs, but with an artful side step the colossal TE veered away from the tackle and tumbled into the end zone for his second career touchdown on his second career reception.
- The Baylor backups got some much needed experience in the game. QB Jarrett Stidham and the second team offense started the third quarter, giving them a full two quarters of experience running the high octane Baylor offense. Stidham had a solid performance going 9 for 10 for 117 yards with two TDs. However, even more impressive, were the Baylor defense second team players. While still playing against the Kansas first team, the Baylor second string gave up zero points to the Jayhawks in the second half.
- Baylor kept their mistakes and penalties low in the game. Baylor was flagged for a season low four penalties for 33 yards. The Bears committed a turnover on a muffed punt, but Kansas was not able to capitalize on it. The special teams gave up one long kickoff return of 43 yards, but that also netted the Jayhawks zero points. Kicker Chris Callahan missed a 34-yard field goal attempt in the 4th quarter, but at that point it was already 66-7. Lastly, DE Shawn Oakman was flagged for a late hit on the QB that kept a Jayhawks drive alive, but the defense again stopped them from scoring any points. So, only four miscues on the day, and only one of them cost the Bears in terms of points on the board. All in all a pretty good day for the Bears.
Next up, the Bears return home for a matchup against the West Virginia Mountaineers. WVU is coming off a tough 33-26 overtime loss to Oklahoma State, and are looking to turn things around after an 0-2 start to conference play.