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Final in Ames: Baylor Completes Comeback, Survives Iowa State Upset Bid 45-42

That's a combination of words I didn't expect to type today.

Full disclosure: By the start of the fourth quarter, I had the entire post-game post already written talking about how Iowa State had scored on 6 consecutive possessions to start the game and utterly dominated our defense to a monumental upset. It's still sitting in the editorial queue, taunting me for my stunning lack of faith. Then the Cyclones didn't score again, Baylor put up 17 points to complete the comeback, and Shock Linwood cemented his place as the best RB in Baylor history with a 25-carry, 237-yard performance.

You have to give every bit of credit to Matt Campbell and Iowa State for the way they played this game.  For three quarters, they had the #13-ranked team in the country on the ropes, beating us like few have done in recent years.  The fact that it eventually got away from them should probably be attributed to just not having the players yet, not any lack of effort or fault of coaching.  They did everything reasonably possible to win this game and didn't.  That happens.  Their future is bright, if today is any indication.

On the Baylor side, the lion's share of the credit has to go to Shock Linwood and the collective Baylor offensive line.  After struggling in each of Baylor's first four games, the rushing offense came alive today with 62 carries for 469 yards, good enough for 7.6 yards per carry.  Of that, Shock had more than half and Terence Williams added 16 carries for 126 yards, too.

In a lot of ways, this game was ultimately reminiscent of the 2014 classic against TCU, including the furious comeback capped by a Chris Callahan field goal.  But the fact remains that 2016 ISU is not 2014 TCU, and there are serious issues we need to address in the next 4 weeks before we face Texas on October 29.  But for now, we celebrate another Baylor win!

Player of the Game: Shock f'ing Linwood.

Box Score:

1st Downs 30 26
3rd down efficiency 10-15 9-13
4th down efficiency 1-2 1-1
Total Yards 647 465
Passing 178 261
Comp-Att 12-22 17-23
Yards per pass 8.1 .0
Interceptions thrown 0 0
Rushing 469 204
Rushing Attempts 62 54
Yards per rush 7.6 3.8
Penalties 9-79 9-80
Turnovers 0 0
Fumbles lost 0 0
Interceptions thrown 0 0
Possession 26:00 34:00

P.S. Matt Leinart just said in the post-game show that Baylor's defense hasn't given up a single point in the fourth quarter this season.  Whoa.