Nation's Top Offense, No. 5 Baylor Too Much for Kansas
LAWRENCE, Kan. – The nation’s top offense looked as good on the field as it has on paper as the No. 5 Baylor Bears rolled to a 59-14 win over Kansas at Memorial Stadium Saturday night.
“They’re real good,” Kansas head coach Charlie Weis said simply after Baylor tallied more than 700 yards for the fifth time this season.
On pace to set new NCAA records for points per game (56.0 by Army, 1944) and yards per game (624.9 by Houston, 1989), Baylor (7-0, 4-0 Big 12) accumulated 743 yards of total offense, the third-most allowed in KU history. Kansas (2-5, 0-4 Big 12) gained 308 yards on offense, the most since the Jayhawks combined for 396 yards against Louisiana Tech and had an even 154-154 split on rushing and passing yards.
BU quarterback Bryce Petty threw for 430 yards and three touchdowns, while running backs Lache Seastrunk (109) and Schock Lindwood (106) each eclipsed the 100-yard mark on the ground. Tevin Reese also grabbed four passes for 110 yards and two touchdowns.
Kansas junior wide out Rodriguez Coleman led the KU offense with 75 yards receiving and grabbed his first career touchdown early in the fourth quarter. James Sims wasn’t too far off the pace with 70 yards rushing. Jayhawk quarterbacks Jake Heaps (85) and Montell Cozart (69) combined for 154 yards in the air, while Heaps had the lone passing touchdown of the game.
The Jayhawk defense forced Baylor to punt on the first drive, stretching its streak of not allowing an opponent to score on the opening drive of the game through seven contests in 2013. An impressive feat considering the Bears entered the game as the nation’s leader in fewest three-and-outs on the season (5). It didn’t take much longer than that, however, for the nation’s best offense to find its groove.
Five minutes later, the Bears struck first on the scoreboard after Bryce Petty connected with Tevin Reese for a 62-yard touchdown on the team’s third possession of the game. Two big plays on the next possession put Baylor back in KU territory when Lache Seastrunk ran the ball 29 yards into the endzone for the team’s second score. The PAT put the bears on top 14-0.
BU added to that lead, scoring 24 points to close the first half with a 38-0 lead. The Bears had 505 yards of offense in the first half, narrowly missing the Jayhawk defense’s most yards surrendered to an opponent for an entire game all season, and five touchdowns. Reese led all receivers at the break with three catches for 96 yards and two touchdowns.
Kansas gained 91 yards in the first half, with 52 yards coming from the feet of senior running back James Sims. Junior defensive back Cassius Sendish led all defenders with seven tackles, six unassisted.
After Baylor struck first in the second half to increase its lead to 45 points, the Jayhawks responded with a six-play, 64-yard drive capped off by a 22-yard touchdown run by Brandon Bourbon off the option from Cozart to break KU’s 40-minute scoreless streak in the game.
The Jayhawks held the Bears to another three-and-out early in the fourth quarter, their third of the game, forcing a Baylor punt from deep in its own endzone. A 24-yard punt return by KU’s Connor Embree gave Kansas the ball on Baylor’s 20-yard line to set up another scoring drive. Heaps connected with Coleman for 30 yards, to extend his touchdown streak to seven games and pulled KU within 38 points of BU, 52-14.
The Jayhawks continue Big 12 play on the road Saturday, Nov. 2, in Austin, Texas. Kickoff against the Longhorns is slated for 2:30 p.m. and can be seen on both the Jayhawk Television Network and the Longhorn Network.
KUAthletics.com: The official online source for Kansas Athletics, Williams Education Fund contributions, tickets, merchandise, multimedia, photos and much, much more.
Game NotesSERIES INFORMATIONBaylor leads the series, 9-4. BU has now won four-straight games over Kansas and improved to 3-4 in Lawrence. The win marked Baylor’s 11th-straight, breaking a school record previously set between the 1936-37 seasons.
KANSAS CAPTAINS: Jake Heaps(QB), Ben Heeney (LB), James Sims (RB), Keon Stowers (DE).
DEBUTS AT KU: None.
FIRST TIME STARTERS AT KU: None.
TEAM NOTES*Kansas won the toss and deferred to the second half, while Baylor received the ball in the north end zone. *KU’s defense forced Baylor to punt on the first drive and hasn’t allowed an opponent to score on the opening drive through seven games in 2013. The Jayhawks have also limited opponents to just four first downs on opening drives. Baylor, who entered the game as the nation’s leader in fewest three-and-outs on the season (5), couldn’t break the trend as the Bears were forced to punt after three plays twice on Saturday, and turned it over on downs on the third.*Baylor also started Saturday’s contest with the fewest punts in the NCAA (16). Less than four minutes into the game, the Jayhawk defense had forced two BU punts. By night’s end, the Bears booted it away four times.*BU scored 21 points in the first quarter, the most KU has surrendered in the opening frame this season – yet still two points less than BU’s first-quarter average (23.2).*The Bears’ 38 points in the first half tied the most allowed in a half in the Charlie Weis era (vs. Iowa State, 11/17/12). *Baylor’s 743 yards are the third-most allowed in school history. The nation’s best offense also tallied 437 passing yards, the seventh-most allowed by a Kansas team.
OFFENSIVE NOTES*Freshman QB Montell Cozart completed his first career pass to junior TE Jimmay Mundine, a six-yard toss in the first quarter. *Facing third and 18, Cozart threw a 45-yard pass to junior WR Rodriguez Coleman for the first down. Two plays later he rushed for six yards, setting up the next play. Junior HB Brandon Bourbon took over from there with a 22-yard touchdown run – also on third down.*Coleman’s 45-yard catch was a career-high, surpassing his previous best of 18 against Louisiana Tech (9/21/13).*Bourbon’s touchdown was his second of the season, his first since KU’s season opener against South Dakota (9/7/12) and third of his career. *Junior QB Jake Heaps connected with Coleman for KU’s second touchdown of the game. The score marked the first-career touchdown for Rodriguez and Heaps’ seventh of the season.*Senior RB James Sims’ 70 yards moves him just three shy of tying former Kansas running back Laverne Smith (1973-76) for third on KU’s all-time career rushing yards (3,074).*Sophomore RB Darian Miller had a career-long run of 38 yards for the second-straight game as he did so against Oklahoma last week.
DEFENSIVE NOTES *Kansas forced Baylor to commit a season-high five fumbles, two of which were recovered by the Jayhawks.*Junior NB Victor Simmons forced a career-high two fumbles. *Junior BUCK Michael Reynolds forced Baylor’s Glasco Martin to fumble in the third quarter, his first fumble of the year. Senior S Dexter Linton recovered the ball, giving it to Kansas on the KU 36 yard line, which resulted in a Kansas touchdown. The forced fumble was Reynolds’ second of the year (vs. Louisiana Tech, 9/21/13). Kansas has forced at least one fumble against four different opponents this season (Oklahoma, TCU, Louisiana Tech).*Senior DL Kevin Young forced his first career fumble, stripping BU’s Devin Chafin of the ball in the fourth quarter. Fellow senior DL Keba Agostinho followed with a first of his own as he scooped up his first career fumble recovery. *Kansas held off the Bears on fourth down in the second quarter, making Jayhawk opponents 0-3 for fourth-down conversions this season – an NCAA-leading mark.*While the Bears flexed their offensive muscle, the KU defense held Baylor – the Big 12’s leader in percentage of drives resulting in a touchdown – to less than its average (58.3 percent). Baylor tallied a TD in eight of 18 drives on Saturday (44.4 percent).
SPECIAL TEAMS NOTES*Junior K Trevor Pardula’s 11 punts tied the third-most in KU history and the most by a Jayhawk kicker since Ron Doherty recorded 11 against Oklahoma (10/15/11). His 515 punting yards were only 20 shy of the Kansas record (535, Dean Royal vs. Nebraska, 10/25/97).
Kansas Head Coach Charlie Weis
On Baylor’s offense:
“They have a lot of fire power and it hurt early. We wanted to hold the ball on them some and we had a lot of things planned with Tony (Pierson) involved. But Tony got pulled out early and that was one weapon we were going to try and utilize early in the game. Not only are they good on offense but their defense played pretty salty against us. We never really could protect the defense early in the game by having our offense stay on the field.”
On Tony Pierson:
“He was just dizzy. He wasn’t hit in the head or anything but when you are coming off a concussion you have to act on the side of caution.”
On both quarterbacks’ performances:
“It’s not a perfect world playing both quarterbacks but they both brought different elements to the game today. I think that it’s going to be more and more the same as it was tonight as we go. Rather than worry about settling into one, we have to get them both ready to play.”
On Rodriguez Coleman:
“It’s been a long time coming for him to get into the mix here. We really need him to step up and get involved and it was really nice to see him step up and make a big play.”
Brandon Bourbon, Jr, RB
On Freshman quarterback Montell Cozart’s play:
“I think he played pretty well. He completed some passes and I think he’s starting to build a little bit of confidence that we can work off of in the future.”
On the mood in lockerroom after the loss:
“They’re really good and we expected them to be really good, but at the same time it’s just disappointing, and we just have to keep fighting to get a win.”
Rodriguez Coleman, Jr, WR
On his performance:
“I got off to a slow start so I felt like I was due for a good game, so hopefully it will carry over to the next few games that we’ve got. Hopefully I can put my team in the best position to win.”
On freshman quarterback Montell Cozart:
“He showed a lot of poise and confidence. For this to be his second game, he came out there and showed poise and confidence and made plays. It was really different than last week, he didn’t have any passing attempts. This week he had a couple pass attempts and he made plays.”
Cassius Sendish, Jr, S
On if Baylor was different live than on film:
“It’s hard to simulate their tempo, and to simulate exactly what they’re going to do. But, I feel like we had a good game plan. Things just didn’t fall in our favor. Missed tackles, that’s a big thing that we need to work on. We had way too many missed tackles.”
On why there were so many missed tackles:
“They stretch you out so wide where the tackles that you have to make are open-field tackles. So, if they squeeze through the middle, then every tackle is going to be an open-field tackle by the way that they line up from the beginning. It’s tough, but playing in a wide, spread open league you have to be able to do that.”
Keon Stowers, Jr, DL
On Baylor’s offense:
“They made a lot of good adjustments. They have a great offense. They made some good adjustments and another thing is we were really beating ourselves by not making tackles. They’ve got a dynamic offense so we were really going to need to be good and make tackles and that’s what we didn’t do.”
On if they were prepared for the Baylor offense:
“They did exactly what we thought they were going to do. We were ready for it the first two drives and then they adjusted to what we were doing. Like I said, it’s a great football team, a great offense.”
Baylor Head Coach Art BrilesOpening Statement:“I’m proud of our guys for the way that they played. The level of energy that they brought, that’s something we talked about all week, bringing energy to the table, creating it and feeding off of it. In our pregame (meeting) we had a lot of spunk. We had a good attitude and a lot of confidence and it carried over onto the field. I think defensively we played extremely well again tonight, like last week. Defensively we held off Kansas early in the game on offense better the first two series. Then once our offense got going, we started coinciding with each other, the next thing you knew you looked up and it was 28-0. So that was a good thing. I thought we had a lot of people contribute on both sides of the ball and on special teams tonight.”
On getting off to a good start:“Like you said, two years ago, I hate to use the term but it’s almost like we stole something. I mean we felt like we really cheated the system and got very, very fortunate. Like I told them, we don’t want any late-game heroics. If we’re going to do something let’s do it early, and see what happens. That’s why we came out and tried to shoot the ball down field early because we didn’t want to let it linger around. Fortunately we played good enough defense to overcome that and finally made a few plays on offense and we got it going.”
On if Bryce (Petty) overhyped before the game:“I don’t know. I mean it could be. Who knows? All I know is Bryce was about as good as I’ve ever seen him tonight. I mean he was really, really on. To the naked eye, people wouldn’t understand, but he checked-down about three times, stuff he has never done all year. I thought our offensive line did a tremendous job of allowing him to have time to throw the ball and I thought we did a good job on both sides of the ball up-front, offensively and defensively.”
On the maturity this team is showing, especially on the road:“Yeah, I mean it’s hard to win, on the road, it’s hard to win at home. It’s tough anywhere and that’s why as you have a mature football team, the more you grow. Like I’ve mentioned all year, we won a bowl-game in 2008 and in 2012 and these guys have won a bunch of football games. They’ve done a lot of good things together. So when we get on the field we know what we’re doing and we have outcomes that are predictable and that’s what you like as a football team.”
Bryce Petty, Jr, QBOn the early offensive struggles:“I personally think I came out too overhyped. Once we shook out the jitters and settled down, we started playing our game. We know we can score points, but going through some adversity will only make us stronger later in the season.”
On what makes this offense so effective:“It all starts with the guys up front. I don’t think I was even touched tonight, and when you have that kind of confidence, to know you can sit there and go through your progressions, it makes my job a lot easier. Plus, I have some of the most talented players in the nation lining up next to me. They make me look a lot better than I do them.”
Sam Holl, Sr, NBOn the defense’ strong showing:“We were ready. When we go on the road, it feels like us against the world. We knew that if we could do our job and get it done early, we had a good chance at having some success.”
On Kansas’ dual-quarterbacks:“We had a good game plan in place for each quarterback, and we executed it well. They didn’t give us any trouble and fortunately we are leaving here with a win.”