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Final in Waco: Baylor Cruises Past Kansas 49-7

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It took the Bears about 4 minutes into the first quarter to establish a 14-0 lead that would prove commanding the rest of the way.

There's not a lot to say about a game you win 49-7 after leading 42-0 at the half.  Baylor scored 21 points in each of the first two quarters on the strength of 3 first-half Kansas turnovers -- including an interception returned for a touchdown by Ryan Reid -- Seth Russell threw for 2 first-half TDs and ran for 2 more, and Shock Linwood set another Baylor record with the 36th rushing TD of his career.  Throw in a complete defensive effort from the starters and you have basically a perfect first half that allowed Baylor to get a ton of guys into the game the rest of the way.

Because of short fields provided by the defense and a little bit of sloppiness in the passing game, this one probably won't go into the offensive record books.  It's important to note, however, that Kansas was coming off a near-upset of TCU that included a very strong defensive performance, so it's nothing to be ashamed of.  When you start drives at the opponent 37, 19, and 4 in the first half, you can't really complain about yards, anyway.

On the defensive side, I mentioned in this morning's afternoon's Game Day thread that I was going to keep an eye on our rushing defense considering the results of past weeks against the Cyclones and Cowboys.  Well, through the first half, Baylor allowed just 29 yards on 25 attempts, and the Jayhawks finished with just 86 on 47. That is definitely a performance I can get behind, even if Kansas is a fairly bad rushing team, generally.

Today's victory marks a couple of important milestones for this season.  First, we're now bowl eligible at 6-0.  That's always worth celebrating considering how long we went without being able to say that.  Second, with Tennessee getting shellacked by Alabama, Baylor should be ranked in the Top 10 in both polls for the first time this season.  Third, and most importantly, the preseason is officially over.  In two weeks, we will travel to Austin to take on the Texas Longhorns in their house.  That's when things are going to get very real.

Other Thoughts:

  • The announcers mentioned that Wyatt Schrepfer once got picked up a tornado that he didn't hear coming because of his headphones.  I need more information about this story, immediately.  This is the first point because the announcers just mentioned it while I'm writing this post.
  • Zach Smith, like all Baylor QBs of recent vintage, throws a great deep ball.  The TD to Pooh Stricklin that got called back was a thing of beauty.
  • Also, he's Bryce Petty
  • Defense still hasn't allowed a point in the fourth quarter this season through six whole games.  I bet that's never happened before in a single season in Baylor history.
  • The rushing offense takes on a completely different look when Seth runs the ball, so get used to it.  I know it's scary to see him take hits, but it's necessary to get the offense to its most efficient state.
  • I don't know yet how many tackles for loss we had from the official statistics, but I wouldn't be surprised if it was around 15.  That's after having only a handful a week ago.
  • Micheal Johnson played late on the DL, meaning we burned another redshirt in service to the cause.
  • ESPN's win probability calculator had Baylor at 97% when the game started.  It never went below that number.
  • Baylor is the best pooch punting team in the country, bar none.  Put that in your advanced stats, Bill C.
  • Kansas converted their second third down of the game with about 2 minutes to go.  I'm just writing down things that are happening right now as they are happening.
  • I liked seeing the coaching staff smiling and carrying on together in the fourth quarter.  I'm going to miss all of those guys when this season is over and wish them good fortune in the seasons to come.

Box Score:

1st Downs 15 20
3rd down efficiency 3-14 7-17
4th down efficiency 1-2 2-3
Total Yards 220 453
Passing 134 207
Comp-Att 13-27 13-30
Yards per pass 5.0 6.9
Interceptions thrown 4 0
Rushing 86 246
Rushing Attempts 47 49
Yards per rush 1.8 5.0
Penalties 4-35 6-38
Turnovers 5 1
Fumbles lost 1 1
Interceptions thrown 4 0
Possession 32:25 26:44