Jayhawks Fall To Baylor In Thriller, 36-35

WACO, Texas – Despite leading 35-17 at half and getting a career-high 196 rushing yards from senior running back Jon Cornish, the University of Kansas football team fell in the final minutes to Baylor University, 36-35. Kansas’ record moved to 3-5 overall and 0-4 in the Big 12, while Baylor improved to 4-4 overall and 3-1 in the league.

The first half was full of action as KU and BU traded leads four times. The Jayhawks scored a season-high 35 points in the first stanza and led Baylor 35-17 at halftime at BU’s Floyd Casey Stadium. Cornish led the Kansas offense with 134 rushing yards on 13 carries and added touchdown runs of 15 yards and one yard in the final 3:27 of the first half to extend KU’s slim 21-17 advantage to 18 points. Freshman quarterback Kerry Meier completed 5-of-9 passes for 55 yards and a score. He also crossed the goal line on a 12-yard scamper in the first quarter.

After Baylor scored on its opening possession, the Jayhawks tied the game 7-7 on Meier’s endzone-finding TD dash. Sophomore linebacker Arist Wright gave Kansas its first lead of the game when he returned an errant Baylor pass 28 yards for his first career touchdown with 6:45 remaining in the first quarter.

Following a Baylor field goal, Bear QB Shawn Bell tossed a four-yard touchdown pass to give the home team a 17-14 advantage. However, the Jayhawks scored three unanswered touchdowns to end the half, including a perfect 13-yard pass-and-catch from Meier to Dexton Fields.

After a scoreless third quarter, Baylor struck in the fourth period on a 42-yard pass play from Bell to WR Trent Shelton with 9:22 to play. The five-play, 80-yard drive narrowed the KU lead to 35-24.

The Bears drew even closer with 4:42 left in the fourth on a four-play, 81-yard drive that set up a four-yard touchdown by RB Paul Mosley. A failed two-point conversion left the score 35-30 in favor of the Jayhawks.

On the ensuing kickoff, Baylor appeared to have Kansas pinned on its own one yardline, but an illegal formation by the Bears forced BU to rekick. The Baylor defense held and took over possession with 2:43 remaining after a KU punt. The Bears then went on a 9-play, 58-yard drive the resulted in a 10 yard TD pass from Bell to Dominique Zeigler with 1:08 on the clock. The BU two-point conversion failed, but Baylor nevertheless took a 36-35 lead which stood as the final score.

KU returns to action on Saturday, Oct. 28, when it hosts Colorado at 1 p.m. at Memorial Stadium in Lawrence. The game is not televised.