So I've been perusing the official, comprehensive stats page from yesterday's game and noticed a few things ripe for further consideration! And now I am writing yet another post about a game I've already covered at length. Don't think we're going to stop here, either. Baylor vs. Sam Houston State is eleven full days away! Let's get started. I'm going to draw a lot from last season (since it's all we have to compare), so I put the source data below the jump.
- Baylor amassed 613 yards on 67 plays. That's 9.15 yards per play. Nearly a first down per offensive play. By comparison to last season, in our single best non-SFA game last season, against Washington in the Alamo Bowl, we averaged 9.14 yards per offensive play (777 yards on 86 plays). Nick Florence's offense was more efficient in his first game as a starter in 2012 than Robert Griffin III's was in his last.
- The 67 plays Baylor ran yesterday was fewer than all but 5 games last season. That includes the SFA game stopped in the third quarter due to lightning. The other four were TCU (65), Kansas State (62), Texas (60), Kansas (58), and SFA (54). We averaged 76.9 plays last season. Run 77 (rounding up) plays yesterday and we have 704 (rounding down) yards.
- The 26 first downs was fewer than all but 6. What I'm saying is there is potential for improvement from our offense where there is potential for improvement on defense. Stop SMU's time-consuming drives (that, granted, ended up going mostly for naught until we pulled our starters) and our offense has more chances. Of course, it didn't hurt things that we had touchdowns of 36, 50, and 37 yards.
- Baylor scored 52 offensive points on 67 plays for an average of .777 points per play. We topped that once last season in a non-SFA game and only barely (Alamo Bowl against Washington, .788 points per play). Again, that's serious efficiency from the Nick Florence-led Bears. We also punted 5 times yesterday versus 2 in the Alamo Bowl. Take those out of the numbers and yesterday actually passes the Alamo Bowl (.839 to .807). Before anyone says it, no, I am not saying our offense is better this season. I am saying it could be better than people expect.
- Nick Florence's passer rating yesterday was 209.48. Robert Griffin III averaged a 189.5 in 2011. Florence's day betters 7 of RGIII's 13 games last season. For the hell of it, Andrew Luck never went over 200 in 2011. Get the picture yet? Nick Florence is better than you think. That makes Art Briles a hell of a lot better than people think.
- Baylor had 10 penalties yesterday for 92 yards. We only eclipsed that mark twice last season (both times with 11) against Texas Tech and TCU. I'll blame that on first game-itis.
- On defense, Baylor gave up 507 yards on 92 (!!!) offensive plays for SMU. 92 is more than any team ran against us last season! (Sidebar: Did you know that Kansas ran the ball 64 times on us last season? 64 times!) That's good for 5.51 yards per play, an average that would rank 5th last season, including, once again, the game against SFA. Two of the teams we held to fewer ypp last season hailed from the Sunflower State (Kansas) while the other was Rice. I don't have a good joke for Rice. It's Rice. The worst game in terms of ypp last season was Oklahoma State (9.5). You probably didn't need that reminder.
- To go with their 507 yards, SMU scored 24 points on those 92 plays for .261 points per play. Excluding the shutout against SFA, that ppp was better than any 2011 defensive performance. The next-best from 2011? The game against Texas (.282). The worst? Okie State once again (.937). Yes, OSU scored almost 1 point per play against us.
- Are these two stats better than you expected? Probably so, and it's one measure of improvement from 2011 to 2012 (albeit a very small sample on the latter). SMU's offense ran more plays against our defense than any team in 2011 and earned fewer points doing so. The defense also held them to a very respectable yards per play. These are good things.
- On a slightly negative note, Baylor gave up 28 first downs against SMU. That total would have been fourth-worst last season (behind A&M, Missouri, and Oklahoma, respectively). Normalize it to total plays and it looks a little better, but we need to get opposing teams off the field. A lot of that yesterday had to do with SMU's strategy, which utilized a lot of short and immediate passes and a lot more Zach Line.
- Speaking of Zach Line, Baylor "held" him to 135 yards on 25 carries for a ypc of 5.4. Take out his longest run (33 yards) and his ypc drops to 4.25. I would have taken that coming into the game if offered.
- Did you know we created at least one turnover in every game last season? It's true. If we can replicate that feat in 2012, it will go a long way toward making this season respectable. The 3 yesterday (2 picks, 1 fumble) certainly helped in the outcome.
- Baylor's defense was credited with 3 tackles for loss yesterday, a decent number considering we ran a 3-man front for probably 90% of the game. SMU's, on the other hand, only had 1. Aside from the incomplete passes, our offense was constantly moving forward. That is also a good thing. Sacks, blown-up running plays, etc. kill drives. Baylor was also credited with 5 QB hurries, 3 of which came from Terrance Lloyd. SMU had 0.
- Baylor's offensive line held SMU to zero (0!!!) sacks yesterday. That happened 2 times all of last season ( against Rice and Kansas). I was very happy to see that.
- Bryce Hager the Horrible (in a good way!) led the defense with 14 tackles (7 solo). His battery-mate Eddie Lackey finished fourth with 8 (3 solo). In a slightly odd quirk, Demetri Goodson racked up 7 tackles, all of which were solo. I guess it's not that weird from a cornerback. My boy Javonte Magee assisted on one tackle.
2011 Offensive Stats
|Passing||Rushing||Total Offense||First Downs||Penalties||Turnovers|
|1||2011-09-02||Texas Christian||W (50-48)||23||29||79.3||414||6||36||150||4.2||1||65||564||8.7||16||9||0||25||11||116||1||0||1|
|2||2011-09-17||Stephen F. Austin||W (48-0)||20||23||87.0||279||3||31||266||8.6||3||54||545||10.1||11||13||1||25||5||35||1||0||1|
|4||2011-10-01||Kansas State||L (35-36)||23||32||71.9||346||5||30||83||2.8||0||62||429||6.9||11||9||1||21||8||103||2||1||3|
|5||2011-10-08||Iowa State||W (49-26)||22||30||73.3||212||1||67||395||5.9||5||97||607||6.3||11||24||2||37||2||20||2||0||2|
|6||2011-10-15||Texas A&M||L (28-55)||28||40||70.0||430||3||31||50||1.6||1||71||480||6.8||17||6||1||24||10||83||0||1||1|
|7||2011-10-29||Oklahoma State||L (24-59)||34||51||66.7||446||1||54||176||3.3||2||105||622||5.9||19||13||4||36||3||28||3||2||5|
|11||2011-11-26||Texas Tech||W (66-42)||16||23||69.6||257||3||79||360||4.6||5||102||617||6.0||9||24||5||38||11||110||2||0||2|
2011 Defensive Stats
|Passing||Rushing||Total Offense||First Downs||Penalties|
|1||2011-09-02||Texas Christian||W (50-48)||25||40||62.5||251||4||38||215||5.7||2||78||466||6.0||13||8||4||25||6||47||0||1||1|
|2||2011-09-17||Stephen F. Austin||W (48-0)||13||22||59.1||122||0||26||85||3.3||0||48||207||4.3||5||4||1||10||9||52||1||1||2|
|4||2011-10-01||@||Kansas State||L (35-36)||13||28||46.4||146||2||51||210||4.1||2||79||356||4.5||8||13||3||24||4||35||0||1||1|
|5||2011-10-08||Iowa State||W (49-26)||17||35||48.6||244||3||33||181||5.5||1||68||425||6.3||8||8||1||17||7||31||1||1||2|
|6||2011-10-15||@||Texas A&M||L (28-55)||25||38||65.8||415||6||45||266||5.9||1||83||681||8.2||17||14||4||35||7||56||0||1||1|
|7||2011-10-29||@||Oklahoma State||L (24-59)||24||36||66.7||274||3||27||327||12.1||5||63||601||9.5||12||10||1||23||7||80||1||0||1|
|11||2011-11-26||N||Texas Tech||W (66-42)||42||56||75.0||398||4||17||46||2.7||2||73||444||6.1||18||4||3||25||9||85||2||2||4|