With senior quarterback Seth Russell’s career ending injury last week in Norman, true freshman Zach Smith on Senior Day made his first career start for the Baylor Bears (6-4, 3-4) against the Kansas State Wildcats (6-4, 4-3) in McLane Stadium. Kansas State, however, with old fashioned defense and running were able to thwart any chance for a win as they defeated Baylor 42-21.
Kansas State capitalized quickly on the freshman signal caller as Smith was held to just 50 yards passing in the first quarter. Offense was at a premium for the majority of the first half for both teams but special teams was able to initially make a difference for the Bears. A muffed punt by Kansas State at their own 22 recovered by the Baylor punt unit gave them prime position.
Baylor was then able to open the game up when Zach Smith hit Blake Lynch for a 25-yard touchdown pass to go up 7-0 in the second quarter.
Despite being plagued by seven penalties for 80 yards in the first half, the Kansas State defense was able to keep the Baylor offense at bay. Looking to reward the defense for its play, the offense was able to score the following drive after Dimel Winston ran it in down at the 2-yard line to even the score up.
“They showed a great deal of determination. They showed some fight and they showed some toughness,” said head coach Bill Snyder in regards to his team. “It’s just guys committing themselves to try and get better and playing to be better every single day. I think they have invested the time and the effort to do so and consequently, you see step-by-step that they are getting better.”
Baylor would go on to score once more before the half as Smith conducted a 5 play, 40 yard drive that culminated in a 24-yard touchdown pass with 32 seconds left as Chris Platt extended his body for a diving reception that put Baylor up 14-7 heading into the half.
Down by 7, the tale of the tape would soon turn to Kansas State and its ground game as Kansas State would takes its first lead of the game at the 2:41 mark and rumble off 119 yards in the third quarter with Alex Barnes getting two touchdown scores. Kansas State would pounce on the freshman quarterback with Donnie Starks nabbing the first of his two interceptions late in the third quarter to help the Wildcats hold a 28-14 lead.
Kansas State finished with 237 yards on the ground with Alex Barnes leading the way with 129 yards and four touchdowns. Dimel Winston produced two touchdowns with his second coming in the third quarter to put Kansas State ahead 35-21.
Defensively Kansas State came away with three interceptions with two on the part of Donnie Starks and one from Dante Barnett. The high-scoring offense Baylor is accustomed to was limited to just 258 yards through the air and was outgained by Kansas State on total offense 414 to 368.
“Well, obviously very disappointing. Thought we had a great week of practice, thought we had a really good shot of winning a football game today,” said Baylor head coach Jim Grobe. “But the thing that we worried about is exactly what happened. Coach Snyder and his team did a nice job controlling the clock. They had 36 minutes of possession time.” Baylor only had 23 minutes of possession time and had 11 penalties called against them.
Baylor has now dropped four straight games and look to avert the course of their season as they are scheduled to take on Texas Tech in Lubbock next week.
Brought to you by: