clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Daily Bears Report 12/7

Matt Rhule Fullfills Promise Before Leaving Temple, Lady Bears down Texas State 90-24.

NCAA Football: Tulane at Temple
Hate Aggies, Check
Derik Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports

Today’s Events

Football, vs. Matt Rhule Welcome Ceremony, 4:00 PM in the Ferrell Center, WATCH LIVE

Baylor Athletics Video Update

Soccer, 2016 Season Highlights


Baylor volleyball’s Katie Staiger was voted to the 2016 American Volleyball Coaches Association Division I Southwest Region First Team, announced Tuesday morning by the AVCA and voted on by the region’s head coaches. From Baylor Bears dot com.

Staiger’s award adds to what has already been a record-breaking season for the redshirt junior, snapping the Baylor record for single-season kills and finishing with the second-most kills in a season in Big 12 history.

The Plano, Texas, native has already earned All-Big 12 first team honors after leading the Big 12 in kills, points, kills/set, and points/set, while ranking in the top-four nationally in all four categories.

Staiger also finished the season leading the nation in total attacks, taking an unreal 1,773 swings this season.

The star outside hitter was the first Baylor student-athlete to earn a spot on the All-Region first team since both Taylor Barnes and Anna Breyfogle earned the honors in 2009, with both going on to earn BU its only two All-Americans in program history.

Staiger becomes the tenth Baylor player to earn All-Region honors and just the sixth to land on the first team. The award is the 13th All-Region nod in program history.

Staiger was a key driving force behind Baylor’s remarkable season, finishing with an overall record of 22-12. BU earned its first 20-win season since 2012 and the most wins since the 2009 team won 24.

BU finished Big 12 play at 9-7, tied for fourth in the conference, matching the record for BU’s best-ever finish in the final standings. Additionally, the .647 winning percentage is the second-highest finish in conference (.650, 13-7, 1999) and the third winning record in conference play in program history (1999, 2009, 2016).

The Bears ended the 2016 season in the NCAA Tournament, the first postseason berth for the program since 2011. BU upset No. 14 San Diego in the opening round before falling to the 10-seed and No. 8-ranked UCLA in the second round.

Up next, Staiger will be considered for a spot on one of the 14-member First, Second, or Third Team All-American teams voted on by the AVCA membership and announced next week.


Baylor will formally introduce new head football coach Matt Rhule to the Waco community at 4 p.m. Wednesday in the Ferrell Center. From Baylor Bears dot com.

The event is free and open to the public and students and will be streamed live on Rhule, who was named the 27th head coach in program history on Tuesday, will speak at a press conference, along with Vice President and Director of Intercollegiate Athletics Mack Rhoades IV and Interim President David Garland.

All parking lots at the Ferrell Center will be open at 2 p.m. with doors to the building opening at 3 p.m.

Rhule, a 20-year coaching veteran, comes to Baylor after serving as head coach at Temple University for four years. He compiled a 14-2 conference record in the past two seasons, which included two bowl appearances, two American Athletic Conference East Division titles and the 2016 American Athletic Conference championship.

Baylor has found its next head coach. Temple head coach Matt Rhule was named the Bears’ new head coach for 2017 after leading the Owls to an American Athletic Conference title, the program’s first conference title since 1967, and the school’s first-ever back-to-back 10-win seasons. From SB Nation.

Rhule has been the head man at Temple since 2013, where he spent five years from 2006-11 on the defensive coaching staff. He spent a season with the New York Giants before being named the Owls’ head coach in 2013. He doesn’t have much Texas-specific experience, being a Pennsylvania native, former Penn State linebacker, and assistant mostly on the East Coast.

In three years on the job in Philadelphia, he has engineered almost linear improvement, both on the field and in recruiting.

Maybe Baylor hasn't done much lately to deserve Matt Rhule. From Philly dot com.

As that school tries to dig out from scandal, however, it did its homework. From everything I've seen the last few years, Rhule is both the real deal as a football coach and made to order for Baylor. He's even the son of a minister. They'll like that down there.

Rhule is a great salesman, but he doesn't sell a line of bull. Temple saw he was the real deal. I mean the whole Temple community, from players to administration to fans. Baylor will see it, too.

It will be interesting to see if Rhule hires some assistants with strong Texas roots, as he himself has no ties to the state. From Campus Insiders.

As is the case at any school, strong recruiting will determine whether or not his tenure is a success. And recruiting will never be more difficult for Rhule and his staff in light of what has happened at Baylor. In addition, forging valuable relationships within the high school circuit will be vital.

Rhule should have no problem finding the right pieces for his personnel puzzle though. He has experience coaching on both sides of the football (as well as on special teams), so his defensive and offensive background will help him identify talented players to build back up the very thin Baylor roster.

There is also the challenge of being a head coach of a football team that has a lot of work to do in order to help heal a fractured community. A younger coach who relishes the challenge of restoring a program needed to be brought into Waco, and that was accomplished.

The values that Rhule instilled in his players during his time at Temple paid dividends both on and off of the field. The hope for the Baylor administration is that, over time, the same can be done at a school that badly needed a fresh perspective.

Baylor’s decision to bring in Temple’s Matt Rhule as its next head coach was one of the wisest the school could have made.

Coach Matt Rhule told reporters on Saturday afternoon that he had “fulfilled a promise” he made to Temple fans and administration shortly after he was hired in December 2012 that he would bring a championship to North Broad. Temple defeated Navy 34-10 in Annapolis, Maryland to win its first conference title since 1967. From Temple News dot com.

On Tuesday afternoon, Athletic Director Pat Kraft walked to a podium in the room adjacent to the Liacouras Center lobby to address the media. Rhule was leaving.

Rhule accepted an offer for the head coaching position at Baylor University. Evan Cooper, the director of player personnel, is also headed to Waco, Texas, according to a report. Kraft said he doesn’t know if other members of the coaching staff will leave.

After Saturday’s game, Rhule thanked the administration and Board of Trustees for what they’ve done for him and his family. Rhule has been at Temple since 2006, except for a one-year stint in the NFL with the New York Giants in 2012.

The news broke earlier in the day and was a 24-hour turn of events, Kraft said. He received a phone call from Rhule on Tuesday morning. Kraft said he wished Rhule luck and thanked him for the program’s turnaround in his four seasons. He declined to discuss what happened in the team meeting this morning.

Football Lands 3 Players on AP All Big XII Team

With one first-team defender and two second-team offensive selections, Baylor football landed three players on the Associated Press (AP) All-Big 12 Team, announced Tuesday by the organization. From Baylor Bears dot com.

The program garnered multiple AP All-Big 12 honorees for the 13th consecutive season, including the ninth straight with at least three.

Baylor’s defensive first-teamer, Orion Stewart, earned the second AP All-Big 12 first team selection of his collegiate career (2014), joining Jordan Lake (2008, 2009) as the only two defensive backs in program history to earn multiple AP first team selections. The senior safety has started in all 12 games this season, ranking eighth in the FBS and second in the Big 12 with five interceptions. The Waco, Texas, product jumped up to third on Baylor’s career interception return yards list, with 226 in his BU career. Stewart’s 0.42 interceptions/game rank second among Big 12 defenders.

Baylor’s two second-team offensive honorees were wide receiver KD Cannon and center Kyle Fuller.

A three-year starter and the team’s most experienced receiver, Cannon has started 11 of the 12 games this season, carrying a Big 12-best 37-game streak with at least one caught pass, making a catch in every one of his collegiate career games played. The junior has continued to show explosive big play capabilities, hauling in 11 touchdown catches this season and 25 in his career, moving into a tie for fifth on Baylor’s all-time single-season list and sole possession of fourth on the career list. With 73 receptions for 989 yards, Cannon moved into sixth on Baylor’s single-season receptions list. The Mount Pleasant, Texas, native leads the Big 12 in receptions/game (6.6) and is fourth in receiving yards/game (89.9), while his 11 touchdown receptions rank third among the conference’s receivers.

The lone returning starter on the offensive line, Fuller has started all 12 games this season and all 38 games over the last three seasons. Through 11 games, the senior center from Wylie, Texas, led the o-line with an average coaches grade of 89.1 and 57 knockdowns. A Senior Bowl Invitee and Sporting News first-team Midseason All-American, Fuller extended an eight-year streak of AP All-Big 12 selections for Baylor offensive linemen, joining Philip Blake (2011) as the only centers to earn the honors. It is the second-straight year that Fuller has been recognized on the AP second team.

Scandal Fallout

A regional accreditor has placed Baylor University on warning and the University of Louisville on probation for 12 months. From The Chronicle of Higher Education.

Both sanctions typically require the institutions to correct their deficiencies and report back to the accrediting agency on their actions. The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools’ Commission on Colleges, one of the nation’s seven regional accrediting agencies, announced its decision on Tuesday at the end of its annual meeting.

The commission found Baylor out of compliance with several accrediting requirements related to the sexual-assault scandal that has plagued the Baptist university in Texas, including a failure to provide adequate support services for students and a failure to have “appropriate fiscal and administrative control” of the institution’s athletics program.

Baylor Steadily Rebuilding

Baylor University filled the year long job opening of vice president of marketing and communications Monday with Jason Cook, a communications leader at Texas A&M University since 2003. From WacoTrib dot com.

Cook replaces John Barry, who in December 2015 accepted a similar role at the University of Richmond after nearly 10 years in the position at Baylor.

“After spending time talking with Jason and hearing his passion for telling the Baylor story and his belief in our Christian mission, the selection team and I knew he was the right person to fill this important role,” interim President David Garland said in a statement.

Lady Bears Basketball

There are certain luxuries the Baylor women’s basketball team is afforded thanks to the amount of depth and talent on their roster. One of those luxuries is patience when it comes to developing young talent. From BearsExtra.

In this case three freshmen – forward Lauren Cox, guard Natalie Chou and guard Calveion “Juicy” Landrum – that were labeled as the nation’s No. 1 recruiting class in 2016.

“They all understood the amount of talent we had coming back when they signed here,” Baylor coach Kim Mulkey said. “And it’s a process that they have to go through. It doesn’t always happen right away, and they’re experiencing that.”

Most places, top 50 recruits are players expected to come in and contribute right away. This year, thanks to depth all over the floor and some growing pains on the part of the freshmen, that just hasn’t been the case.

With two games remaining before No. 3 Baylor (9-1) Big 12 play starts – Tuesday night against Texas State (3-3) and Dec. 15 against Winthrop – it may be hard to pick up minutes moving forward.

Lady Bears Over Texas State Bobcats 90-24

Baylor's semester final exams don't start until Thursday, but the third-ranked Lady Bears passed one of their last pre-conference tests with flying colors. Story by Jerry Hill of the Baylor Bear Foundation from Baylor Bears dot com.

Even with senior guard Alexis Jones sitting out, six players scored in double figures as the third-ranked Baylor Lady Bears (10-1) coasted to a 90-24 victory over the Texas State Bobcats Tuesday night at the Ferrell Center.

"You don't look at the score, you look at what you can do to help yourself and the team," said Baylor coach Kim Mulkey, whose team improved to 10-1 with its eighth straight overall and 48th in a row at home. "And I thought a lot of them should leave tonight feeling better about themselves."

That included freshman guard Natalie Chou, who was 5-of-6 from outside the arc and scored a career-high 15 points, tying Alexis Prince and Kalani Brown for game-high honors.

"Natalie showed a lot of confidence today," said Prince, who hit five of her last six shots after missing her first four. "That's what we've been wanting her to do is shoot the ball. You know it's not going to go in if you don't shoot it. Tonight, she was confident."

Mulkey said there were points earlier in the season where the 6-1 freshman guard "wouldn't even look at the basket."

"I told her, `I can go get another player to do that,''' she said. "I brought you here to shoot the ball. Shoot the ball."

Baylor got out to a slow start, turning it over seven times in the first quarter and leading by just three, 13-10, when the Bobcats' Brooke Holle nailed a 3-poointer with 4:30 left in the opening period. Prince said there wasn't really a reason for the slow start, but "the second group came in and got the job done."

The Bobcats (3-4) trailed by just eight after the first quarter and 31-17 midway through the second. But after that, it was all Lady Bears. They scored the next 16 points before a Taeler Deer layup made it 47-19 at the break.

"The disappointing piece is we got to take Texas State shots, and those are shots we generally knock down," Texas State coach Zenarae Antoine said. "To only score five points in one half was really, really tough, largely because we pride ourselves on signing kids who can put the ball in the hole. They struggled tonight."

Baylor's defense ratcheted it up a notch in the second half, holding the Bobcats to just 2-of-31 shooting and five points. The Lady Bears opened the second half on a 19-0 run and stretched their lead to 75-21 by outscoring Texas State, 28-2, in the third quarter.

Antoine said Baylor looks like a Final Four team to her.

"I think they're moving in the right direction, for sure," she said. "I think the one thing you have to do is play a little bit outside yourself, in a positive way, and sometimes you find that extra energy, that burst of speed to be able to go ahead initially - shots going up and being able to push (Baylor) back under the rim. And then our guards can snatch those rebounds versus their bigs. That's what we've got to continue to work on, because that's an Achilles' heel, regardless, that we need to work on."

The Lady Bears dominated points in the paint (50-10) and second-chance points (25-0) and finished with a decisive 59-23 edge on the boards.

Nina Davis and Beatrice Mompremier chipped in with 12 points apiece, while 6-4 freshman forward Lauren Cox had 15 points, 11 boards and three blocks, including one she swatted into the stands.

"Sometimes we forget that those kids are two sophomores and a freshman," Mulkey said of Mompremier, Brown and Cox. "But, as I tell them, expectations from me may be tough sometimes and may be harder than they should be. But if I don't expect it, I won't get it out of you as soon as I need to."

Mulkey said Jones, who scored 30 in Sunday's 88-66 win at Tennessee, was not injured. She was just trying to get her fifth-year senior some extra rest.

"The less and wear and tear you can get right now that's not necessary, the longer she will be able to stay healthy during conference and the playoffs," Mulkey said of Jones. "But, she's not hurt, she's good to go."

The Lady Bears will play just one game in the next 22 days, hosting Winthrop next Thursday, Dec. 15, before opening Big 12 play with a home game against Kansas State on Dec. 29.

Postgame vs. Texas State

Baylor Men’s Basketball

Nearly a month into the college basketball season, Baylor has the best and most convincing resume. From Fox Sports.

Scott Drew’s bunch has already beaten three top 25 teams by double-digits — Oregon, Xavier and Michigan State — plus knocked off another in Louisville in the championship of the Battle 4 Atlantis.