Freshman WR Robbie Rhodes Shines in Baylor's Second Scrimmage

USA TODAY Sports

Baylor held its second preseason scrimmage of 2013 this morning, and once again, true freshman Robbie Rhodes stole the show on offense. Might he be the best wide receiver on the team already?


Ok, ladies and gents.  In just a few minutes, we'll be exactly two weeks away from the start of Baylor's 2013 football season.  In preparation, Baylor held its second scrimmage of CampBU this morning, and the official site has stats/notes/quotes as part of their official release. Unlike last week, I couldn't make it to Waco for this one, but I traded messages with someone who did that gave me quite a bit of interesting information.  Also, Justin Krainz of BearsTruth was able to make it, and he posted his thoughts to Baylor's 247Sports board.

  • Several important players missed today's scrimmage for various reasons.  The players that I heard were out included DT Javonte Magee, who has now missed both for personal reasons, DE Shawn Oakman, still working his way back from injury, WRs Antwan Goodley and Clay Fuller, reasons unknown, S Ahmad Dixon, same, K Aaron Jones, graduation, and DT Andrew Billings, broken nose.  It's hardly ideal to have so many players missing opportunities, especially on the DL.  On the bright side, the absences gave several other players the chance to step up and also revealed a position change of note.
  • Starting with that position change, CB Darius Jones, once a WR, is now a WR again.  He was playing in Goodley's spot as an IR.  He even caught a pass from Seth Russell on the second team offense.
  • Getting to the good stuff-- Robbie Rhodes, #3 in the highlights above, was reportedly incredible.  The guy I was texting with at the time of his 78-yard TD said he might be the best WR on the team already.  Seriously.  That catch came against the first-team defense, who just couldn't contain him.  He's incredible.  My guess is that when the time comes, he'll be in a rotation opposite Jay Lee on the first-team offense.  He's doing that well.
  • I'm told Bryce Petty looked good on the first offense, and the stats seem to bear that out.  His primary targets with the first-team offense were Jay Lee (4 catches for 39 yards and a TD) and Tevin Reese (6 catches for 74 yards).  Corey Coleman also had a pretty good day, adding 5 catches for 55 yards, himself.
  • The rushing stats aren't all that impressive, but I wouldn't take much away from that.  They have a tendency, especially with the starters, to blow plays dead as the RB breaks away.  With known quantities like Lache Seastrunk, there's no reason to stop a drive with a TD.  Devin Chafin led the way in terms of yardage, but I'm told that he was stuffed by the first-team defense on fourth and short midway through the scrimmage.  In Magee's absence, Suleiman Masumbuko and Trevor Clemons-Valdez are rotating on the DL with Beau Blackshear.
  • With Dixon out, redshirt freshman Orion Stewart saw action with the 1s at safety.  He was an extremely late addition to the 2012 recruiting class, but he's been impressive in camp, and he may be the future at that position.
  • The first-team defense apparently had their way a bit with the second-team OL.  Chris McAllister had two sacks to continue a strong preseason, and Bryce Hager and Eddie Lackey both had 1,  Still, Russell had probably his best day of the fall, including the deep TD to Rhodes.
  • Pat Colbert could be pushing Kelvin Palmer at the RT position until Troy Baker returns.  There's no way that's a bad thing.  Palmer can play every position on the line, so if Colbert shows he's good enough to start, you could potentially move Palmer back to C and Huber to G, where they both may be better off.  It's something to watch.
I have a hard time expressing how happy I am about the positive scrimmage reports about Bryce Petty.  From all indications, he's handled his elevation to starter extremely well and left no questions about who leads this team.  I'm also beaming a bit about Robbie Rhodes, who is proving everyone who pushed him right so far.  He's a special player who will do special things.
As far as the defense goes, the quotes from McAllister and Briles show that they probably didn't have the day many hoped for.  The absence of several key players may have something to do with that.  We'll see going forward how they adjust, particularly against the pass.
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