Overreaction Central - Baylor Vs. Kansas

Bears win! First conference win on the books in a dominating effort from both sides of the ball. Did the offense finds its running game by unleashing Lache? Did the defense finds it mojo...FINALLY? Join us insides BearsIllustrated.com to overreact.

The Bears win, finally nothing their first conference victory of 2012. It took a few weeks longer than most of us expected, but it is finally here? Is it too late to lead to a bowl game? Hopefully not. Let's not worry about that here though, lets just enjoy the best performance from the team so far this year. They thoroughly beat an overmatched team for the first time since the SMU game way back in week 1. The defense stepped up and got a shutout in the second half, and made play after play to get off the field and get the offense the ball.

Word of the Game:

Offense- Runtastic
Yes, I can make up words here. Its my article dangit. Anyway, the Bears just pushed the Jayhawks around, especially after Cyril Richardsaon came into the game at halftime. The Bears gained a total of 299 yards rushing on the day. In the 4 previous conference games, the Bears were out rushed by an average of 148.75 to 206.5 yards. The only game the Bears out rushed their opponent was the Texas game, where they still allowed 251 yards rushing (gaining 255 themselves).

In this game though, the Bears attacked with two very different players leading the way in Lache Seastrunk and Glasco Martin. Seastrunk got the afternoon started as he gained 28 yards on the first drive with 13 yards rushing and 15 yards receiving. However, the next drive he did all of his work in the passing game as he ran a perfect wheel route in the middle of the field to get past the linebacker, catch the ball in stride and explode for a 68 yards touchdown.

In the second half, Glasco Martin would get his turn to be the main guy as a tired Kansas defense just let him run through the interior of their line. In the fourth quarter, Martin had 3 carries for 101 yards. Read that again. Three carries. 101 yards. In the second half total he had 150 yards rushing. That is domination. The Bears averaged 6.1 yards per carry, but if you just look at Martin and Seastrunk, they gained 9.25 yards per carry.

Defense - Aggressive
Phil Bennett must have really enjoyed the lightning delay, as his defense came out with their hair on fire to start the 3rd quarter. They stopped Kansas on a 4th and 2, behind the great run defense of Nick Johnson and Chris McCallister, who were both all over the field making big plays. Before the last two drives of the game, the Bears held Kansas to just 3 first downs in almost 19 minutes of action. Those last two drives, they got 5 first downs.

The Bears 2 sacks on the day, both as a result of excellent coverage from the secondary. They got 8 tackles for loss and forced 2 interceptions and also forced 2 fumbles, though they did not recover either. The Bears were flying around the field in the 2nd half, confusing the young Kansas signal caller Michael Cummings into completing just 9 of 19 passes for 81 yards.

In the first half, the Bears rushing defense was being gashed for big gains, as James Sims had over 100 yards at halftime. Sims would finish with just 126 yards on the day as the Bears shut the Kansas running game down.

Fun Stats of the Game:
-In the 3rd quarter, the Jayhawks had 48 total yards, including penalty yards. Take those out, and it is just 33 yards.
-James Sims had only 21 yards rushing in the second half
-The Bears had the second most Tackles For Loss of the season with 8 (9 against Sam Houston State)
-Terrance Williams had double digit receptions for the third game in a row, and for the fourth time this season
-Lache Seastrunk's 5 receptions are a season high for a Baylor running back. He had 91 yards receiving, more than the rest of the Baylor running backs have combined for the year
-8 different Baylor defenders had a tackle for loss, a season high. Not one defender had more than 1 in the game.
-Lache Seastrunk had 207 all-purpose yards, the second time a Bear has gone over 200 yards of total offense (Terrance Williams, 314 against West Virginia)
-Lache Seastrunk averaged 8.81 yards per touch on offense
-After not holding an opponent to anything other a touchdown in the red-zone through their first 3 conference games, and allowing touchdowns on 20 of 21 red-zone appearances, the Bears stopped Kansas on both of their red-zone trips.

Players of the Game:
Offense - Lache Seastrunk
Really, who else was I going to choose??? The fans have been clamoring for him to get more touches, and he has been getting a few more each game. He had 7 carries against Texas and Iowa State, but was finally unleashed against Kansas for 17 carries plus 5 receptions, and even a kickoff return. Lache was explosive and effective. He averaged 6.1 yards per carry, and only had 1 carry for loss, something that has plagued him early in his career.

Where he really helped though was in the passing game, giving Nick Florence an outlet for several passes and catching a season high for a running back 5 passes. He had the most explosive play of the game for the Bears 2nd touchdown, and seemed to give the Bears a huge lift.

Honorable Mention - Glasco Martin (destroying defenses in the 2nd half), Terrance Williams (double digit catches are so easy for him), Nick Florence (no turnovers)

Defense -
For the first time since the season opener, this one was actually tough, and not from having no good choices. The Bears defense got contributions from all over the field. Nick Johnson had two huge plays in the running game on 3rd and 4th down to force punts. Chris McCallister played great edge defense all game and ended up with 5 tackles and got a big sack. Joe Williams got a lucky interception (he was beat on the play) but had 2 pass break ups and played pretty well. Ahmad Dixon was his usual self and got an interception on a great play to slide back in his zone and undercut a pass to the side line.

However, I am going to choose Sam Holl, who played aggressive and really attacked all day. He forced a fumble and led the Bears with 11 tackles and played solid coverage. Holl really set the tone early in the game (along with Eddie Lackey) by filling lanes and hitting the ball carriers heard.

Honorable Mention - Ahmad Dixon, Chris McCallister, Eddie Lackey, and the Kansas Jayhawk offense

Summary -
This was a much needed win, no doubt. However, a closer win or even a comeback win would have done little to truly help settle the fan base and possible the team. We needed a dominating win that left little doubt we were no the Baylor Bears of the last decade. The hope has to be that the team gets on a roll and somehow wins two more games. It won't be easy, as the Bears will not be favored in any of their last 4 games probably. But at least we have a sliver of hope now.

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