The Norman Transcript

Sports

December 1, 2013

Baylor still in the Big 12 hunt

(Continued)

FORT WORTH, Texas —

“Just to have a Big 12 win is big,” said Bryce Petty, who threw for two touchdowns and ran for another the first play after Baylor recovered a fumble at the TCU 1. “To do it in that fashion is big. And it keeps us in the race.”

The Baylor offense was racing early before bogging down against the Big 12’s best run defense. The Bears had just 169 yards after the first quarter, when they ran an astounding 40 plays for 201 yards.

The Bears finished with 370 yards, ending their nation-best streak of 37 straight games with at least 400 yards dating to the regular-season finale against Oklahoma in 2010.

As a result, Baylor’s scoring average of 55.4 points is now slightly behind Army’s NCAA record of 56.0 in 1944.

The Bears will need 119 points combined against Texas and in their bowl game to match Army.

The good news? Baylor’s still on pace for record in yards per game at 635.1 — ahead of Houston’s mark of 624.9 in 1989. And that’s after the average dropped more than 25 yards against TCU.

Baylor won by turning away four TCU possessions in the fourth quarter. Plus, one could argue that the defense outscored the high-powered offense 21-20 because of interception returns for scores by Orion Stewart and Eddie Lackey and Beau Blackshear’s fumble recovery before the Petty TD.

“They made every play they needed to to get us the win,” said receiver Levi Norwood, who had 83 yards receiving and a touchdown. “And that’s what we’ve come to expect of them on offense. When we weren’t on offense doing what we needed to be doing to get the win, we could count on them and that’s what a team is.”

Perhaps caught up in the emotion, Briles called it “one of the biggest wins” in his six years at Baylor, which now include two of the three 10-win seasons and a chance for the first 11-win campaign in school history. Briles could certainly be excused for getting caught up in the emotion.

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