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First Look: Baylor Bears vs. Kansas State Wildcats

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The #1 team. In Waco. On ESPN. This is where heroes are born and immortality achieved.

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Matthew Emmons-US PRESSWIRE

vs.
BAYLOR (4-5, 1-5) vs. 2/2/1 KANSAS STATE (10-0, 7-0)
Nov. 17, 2012 | 7 p.m. CT
Waco, Texas | Floyd Casey Stadium (50,000)

Listen | GametrackerGametracker | Tickets Tickets | Game NotesNotes | In-Game BlogLive Blog | Gameday Central

Opponent: Kansas State Wildcats
Official Website: KStateSports.com; KState's Preview
2012 Roster: Here; Game Notes (including depth chart): Here
Last Game: 23-10 win over TCU
2011 Matchup: 36-35 KSU win
SB Nation Blog: Bring On the Cats
Baylor Bears vs. Kansas State Wildcats Game Page

2012 KANSAS STATE WILDCATS SCHEDULE
DATE OPPONENT RESULT/TIME RECORD/TICKETS
Sat, Sept 1 1-0 (0-0)
Sat, Sept 8 2-0 (0-0)
Sat, Sept 15 3-0 (0-0)
Sat, Sept 22 4-0 (1-0)
Sat, Oct 6 5-0 (2-0)
Sat, Oct 13 6-0 (3-0)
Sat, Oct 20 7-0 (4-0)
Sat, Oct 27 8-0 (5-0)
Sat, Nov 3 9-0 (6-0)
Sat, Nov 10 10-0 (7-0)
Sat, Nov 17 8:00 PM ET ESPN Tickets
Sat, Dec 1 TBD Tickets

We thought our season peaked last week and now have the #1-ranked Wildcats coming to town. Last week's game turned out better than I expected, to be honest, and I have a weird calm about this game that I can't really explain. Kansas State is, by almost any measure, the best team we've faced this season, but I feel better about this game than I did going to Norman. Part of it is that we're at home, and part is that I'm probably underrating the Wildcats. I have that tendency with Bill Snyder teams. Regardless, I know our coaching staff isn't and couldn't possibly be taking the Wildcats lightly, and whether we come out motivated shouldn't be a question.

Kansas State is undefeated for a reason: they're really good. Our recently resurgent rushing offense that went for 252 against Oklahoma will have its hands full; few teams in the country stop the run better than Snyder's bunch. Our defense will have similar problems stopping Collin Klein from gashing them to death. Considering Blake Bell's constant success against us, I'd say that's the biggest possible key to this game. Baylor has to figure something, anything, out with the defensive front seven to at least limit the Wildcats' running game.

Category National
Rank
Actual National
Leader
Actual Conf
Rank
Big 12
Conference Leader
Actual
Rushing Offense 20 213.60 Army 366.10 1 Kansas St. 213.60
Passing Offense 86 207.50 Texas Tech 370.00 9 Texas Tech 370.00
Total Offense 47 421.10 Louisiana Tech 576.50 7 Baylor 564.00
Scoring Offense 8 42.20 Oregon 54.80 3 Oklahoma St. 43.89
Rushing Defense 9 98.90 Stanford 58.60 2 TCU 98.40
Pass Efficiency Defense 36 120.22 Florida 90.43 3 Oklahoma 92.71
Total Defense 34 350.10 Florida St. 242.90 4 Texas Tech 324.60
Scoring Defense 14 17.70 Alabama 11.10 1 Kansas St. 17.70
Net Punting 41 38.13 Louisiana Tech 43.13 6 Oklahoma St. 41.47
Punt Returns 2 23.77 Boston College 25.00 1 Kansas St. 23.77
Kickoff Returns 3 29.04 Rutgers 30.40 1 Kansas St. 29.04
Turnover Margin 1 2.00 Kansas St. 2.00 1 Kansas St. 2.00
Pass Defense 78 251.20 Michigan 149.20 5 Oklahoma 170.22
Passing Efficiency 7 165.41 Alabama 170.30 1 Kansas St. 165.41
Sacks 20 2.70 Stanford 4.20 1 Kansas St. 2.70
Tackles For Loss 53 6.00 Stanford 9.10 5 Texas 7.50
Sacks Allowed 14 1.00 Air Force .30 3 Oklahoma St. .67

As you can see, Kansas State isn't just good at one thing, they're good at most things. They don't turn the ball over, run almost exclusively, and stop the run nearly as well. We'll take a closer look at all this later in the week-- earlier this time, I promise.

Passing Rushing Total Offense First Downs Penalties Turnovers
Split G Cmp Att Pct Yds TD Att Yds Avg TD Plays Yds Avg Pass Rush Pen Tot No. Yds Fum Int Tot
Offense 10 15.1 21.7 69.6 207.5 1.2 41.3 213.6 5.2 3.5 63.0 421.1 6.7 9.6 11.4 1.6 22.6 3.2 25.1 0.3 0.3 0.6
Defense 10 23.8 38.3 62.1 251.2 1.2 30.6 98.9 3.2 0.6 68.9 350.1 5.1 12.3 6.5 1.0 19.8 4.3 36.0 1.2 1.4 2.6
Difference -8.7 -16.6 +7.5 -43.7 0.0 +10.7 +114.7 +2.0 +2.9 -5.9 +71.0 +1.6 -2.7 +4.9 +0.6 +2.8 -1.1 -10.9 -0.9 -1.1 -2.0

Useful Links:
Football Outsiders' FEI and S&P+ rankings and the associated submenus.
SB Nation's Kansas State 2012 Preview
Football Study Hall's 2011 Statistical Review