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Daily Bears Report 11/18

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Men’s basketball back on the court tonight.

NCAA Basketball: Oral Roberts at Baylor Ray Carlin-USA TODAY Sports

Today’s Events

Men’s Basketball

Slow Motion Highlights vs. Oregon

Lady Bears Basketball

Baseball

  • The Grizzlies cut into the Kodiaks’ 2-0 series lead with an 11-2 run-rule victory on Thursday afternoon in the 2016 Sic’em Omaha Challenge fall intrasquad series. From Baylor Bears dot com.

The Grizzlies got off to an inauspicious start as Kodiaks shortstop Tucker Cascadden hit an inside-the-park home run in the bottom of the third inning. However, Josh Bissonette tied the game up with a bases-loaded sacrifice fly for the Grizzlies in the top of the fourth.

Then the bats roared for the Grizzlies in the fifth, posting a nine-run inning. Aaron Dodson started the scoring with a solo homer. Andy Thomas and Kameron Esthay posted RBI singles before Dodson delivered a crushing three-run double for an 8-1 lead. Davis Wendzel followed with an RBI double and Thomas ended the scoring with another RBI single.

The Kodiaks got a run back in the bottom of the fifth on a Cameron Miller double, but T.J. Raguseanswered with an RBI triple in the top of the sixth for the Grizzlies.

Grizzlies starter Hayden Kettler earned the win, allowing two runs on two hits and one walk with two strikeouts in four innings. Kodiaks starter Daniel Caruso took the loss, giving up five runs on five hits and three walks with one strikeout in 2.1 innings. Trevor Harris finished the final 1.2 frames, allowing six runs on seven hits with two strikeouts.

The Grizzlies bats were led by Dodson’s two hits and four RBI, while Thomas had two hits and two RBI. The Kodiaks were led by Cascadden and Miller, who each had a hit and RBI apiece.

The series continues Friday at 6 p.m. CT and the finale is Sunday at 1 p.m.

Cross Country

Coming out of high school, Lindsey Bradley felt like Baylor was a perfect fit for her. Story by Jerry Hill of the Baylor Bear Foundation. Baylor Bears dot com has the full story.

But, the Richland, Wash., native and self-proclaimed “homebody” was scared off by the thought of traveling two zones and 1,894 miles away for college.

By the end of her first semester at the University of Washington, though, she realized “that wasn’t exactly where God wanted me to be, and I needed to come to Baylor.”

“Thank God, everything lined up perfectly,” said Bradley, the No. 2 runner for a Baylor cross country team that’s ranked 23rd going into Saturday’s NCAA Championships in Terre Haute, Ind. “It worked out way better than I ever expected. The fact that (coach Todd Harbour) still had a spot and he still wanted me that late in the game was truly a God thing.”

Habour knew he was getting a “difference-maker, for sure,” in Bradley, the 2014-15 Gatorade Cross Country Athlete of the Year in Washington. She placed 12th at the 2014 Nike Cross Nationals, won the state cross country meet as a senior at Richland High School and also captured the 4A state title in the 3,200 meters as a senior in 2015.

“I knew she was a special talent. She had a great high school career,” Harbour said. “I had an idea, but you never know for sure until you get them here. . . . I was really more excited about her, because getting to know her and her family during the recruiting process, I knew what kind of young lady she was. After what she went through up there, I wanted to make this right for her down her.”

Tailgate Concert Series

  • Tomorrow’s tailgate concert series features the alternative rock band Sister Hazel. The concert will take place following the "Bear Walk," which happens two and half hours prior to kickoff. The stage for each performance will be right outside Gate D of McLane Stadium on the grassy area next to the south plaza. The concert will last for approximately one hour to leave fans ample time prior to kickoff to enter the stadium. Admission to the concert series is completely free and does not require a game tickets.

Football

  • Baylor football placed 15 student-athletes on the 2016 Academic All-Big 12 Team, the league announced Thursday. From Baylor Bears dot com.

The Bears had five first-team selections and 10 second-team honorees.

The 10 athletes on the second team are the most in program history, surpassing the school record of eight established in 2001. Meanwhile, the 15 total honorees are fourth-most in program history.

In total, BU has produced 248 Academic All-Big 12 selections since the league's inception in 1996, and 93 of those selections have come in the last seven years. The Bears have placed at least five on the first team in each of the last 12 seasons.

Baylor's first team selections were Blake Blackmar, Cole Edmiston, Tyler Jaynes, Chris Lutzeland Blake Murphy. Representing the Bears on the second team were Chris Callahan, JaMycal Hasty, Lynx Hawthorne, Lenoy Jones Jr., Patrick Lawrence, Verkedric Vaughns, Iain Hunter, Ross Matiscik, Keith Orcutt and Xavier Phillips.

Edmiston and Jaynes both earned first-team recognition for a second consecutive year, while Hawthorne is a three-time second-team honoree.

To qualify, student-athletes must maintain a 3.00 GPA or higher either cumulative or the two previous semesters and must have participated in 60 percent of their team's scheduled contests. Freshmen and transfers are not eligible in their first year of academic residence. Senior student-athletes who have participated for a minimum of two years and meet all the criteria except percent of participation are also eligible. First team members consist of those who have maintained a 3.20 or better GPA while the second team selections hold a 3.00 to 3.19 GPA.

Across the Big 12, 93 athletes were first team members, while 83 comprised the second team. Next up for Baylor is a home date with Kansas State at 11 a.m. CT Saturday in McLane Stadium. The game will serve as Senior Day for the Bears.

  • Baylor football has one final opportunity to satisfy the home crowd this season, as it goes against the Kansas State Wildcats on Saturday at McLane Stadium. From Baylor Lariat.

“This game, we’ll honor our seniors. A great group of 12 seniors will be honored,” said acting head coach Jim Grobe. “We hope we have a great crowd Saturday. It’s a wonderful group of guys that has persevered through a tough season so far. I’m really proud of these guys. They’re very important to Baylor football for a long time.”

One of those seniors will be quarterback Seth Russell. However, after sustaining a dislocated ankle in Saturday’s loss to Oklahoma, he will not get to the lead the Bears’ offense one last time at McLane Stadium. Instead, Grobe and offensive coordinator Kendal Briles will now hand the keys to the offense to freshman quarterback Zach Smith.

“I feel great. I feel confident,” Smith said. “Seth [Russell] has confidence in me going out there and leading the team, and I feel great, real excited, maybe a little nervous, but I feel that’s a given. I’m just going to go out there and be a leader and try execute this offense.”

It was not the plan that the coaching staff had for Smith, but when injury took out starting quarterback Seth Russell, it was Smith’s chance to lead the offense.

Saturday will be a big stage for the true freshman, who less than a year ago was playing high school football in front of an audience of just a few hundred people. On Saturday, there will be thousands of people in the stands and even more watching from home as the game is broadcast across the country.

There is one town which will be watching closely, Grandview, Texas, a town just 45 minutes north of Waco that sits right off of Interstate 35.

With a population just over 1,300, Grandview provided the perfect small-town stage to launch Smith’s football career under the high school’s head football coach, Casey Walraven.

"What you see with Zach is what you get and it’s something special,” Walraven said.

“He really set the bar high for people to come after him and the people that watched him play.”

  • K-State Wildcats vs Baylor Bears game preview, time, tv, kickoff | The Kansas City Star: The Kansas State University football team is trying to achieve bowl eligibility with a sixth win when it faces the Baylor Bears on Saturday at McLane Stadium in Waco, Texas. Baylor is trying to salvage a once promising season. The game kicks off at 11 a.m. Central and airs on ESPN2.
  • One True Podcast: Nov. 17, 2016 - WacoTrib.com: The Bear Blog: Talking Baylor and Big 12 football (and politics) from all angles this week.
  • K-State offense runs to its own beat | The Topeka Capital-Journal: WACO, Texas — Kansas State’s offense is like no other in the Big 12 Conference. While up-tempo, spread passing games have become all the rage, K-State sticks with its run-first attack keyed by the quarterback.
  • Breaking down Baylor vs. Kansas State - Houston Chronicle: Key players: BU - QB Zach Smith, RB JaMycal Hasty, WR K.D. Cannon; KSU - QB Jesse Ertz, RB Charles Jones, DB D.J. Reed. The Bears put up 504 yards in last week's loss to Oklahoma and had one more first down than the Sooners (24-23), but they committed three turnovers and scored only one TD in four red-zone trips. DE Jordan Willis leads K-State with nine sacks, 131/2 tackles for loss and two forced fumbles. Wildcats punt returner Dominique Heath has eight returns for 123 yards and one TD, and kick returner Byron Pringle has 23 kick returns for 659 yards and one TD. The senior suffered a neck injury against Iowa State last year and missed the rest of that season as well.