5 Things I Think
1. I am still so excited and pumped up about that Homecoming demolishing of Iowa State. The Cyclones were a tough out for every team on their schedule this year, not losing a game by more than 8 points. They should have beaten Texas earlier this year at home, if not for the lovely refs. All the Bears did was destroy them in all three phases of the game, and win 71-7. This is not a good Iowa State team, but it is a tough and well-disciplined one that has some good talent at certain positions. Their quarterback position is obviously in disarray with Sam B. Richardson hobbled a bit by an ankle injury. The Bears did a much better job of corralling the quarterback run, but that was not the full speed Richardson. There is only one other major running threat at the quarterback position on the Bears schedule, and that is Trevone Boykin of TCU. That is if Boykin is still starting in a month as he has struggled significantly this year.
2. Right now, it is a have and a have not Big 12. The Top 5 are all in position to compete for a Big 12 championship, with the top half having an overall record of 28-4 with a conference record of 15-2. The only team not ranked in the Top 25 is Texas, with Baylor, Texas Tech, Oklahoma and Oklahoma State all being ranked in the top 19. The back half of the Big 12 though is pretty ugly right now. Kansas, Kansas State and Iowa State are all 0-3 in the Big 12, while TCU and West Virginia are both 1-3. Overall, the teams have a record of 11-21. None of the teams are over .500 overall, and really just the Horned Frogs and the Mountaineers have a chance at a bowl game right now. Kansas State is going to need multiple upsets to get a bowl game spot right now.
3. Everyone just keeps waiting for Texas Tech to lose, including myself. I thought they would lose to West Virginia this weekend, and they almost did. In fact, their game looked a lot like the Kansas State game for Baylor, where they led early, lost the lead and trailed by quite a bit and then needed a comeback late in the game to win. The Red Raiders trailed 27-16 with over 4 minutes to go in the 3rd quarter. They did get the lead back in the fourth, and added on a late touchdown to win by 10 points, 37-27. Sound familiar?
4. Saying that, the Red Raiders schedule does get tougher now, with them going on the road to Oklahoma then hosting Oklahoma State next. They also have to travel to Austin to finish out the season and still have the Bears at Cowboy Stadium. There are a ton of obstacles left for them and the Bears in the back half of the schedule, but Baylor fans should be giving Texas Tech the same credit we are asking of others.
5. I don't know why I got so much enjoyment out of watching the Broncos lose last night, but I did. I enjoyed seeing Peyton Manning get knocked around by his old team and fall for the first time. Maybe it is the golden child syndrome, or the fact that I watched the Book of Manning recently. While a tremendous documentary, it really is nauseating how great Peyton is sometimes. Even funnier, he was the one that was wronged in that whole situation. Most of the times, we are used to the high priced player ditching the small city for the bigger lights. This was a case of the Colts throwing Manning away for the younger prettier (and cheaper) prize.
5 Things I Want
1. I want to say thank you to Texas A&M, LSU, UCLA, Louisville and Clemson for all doing your part to make the Bears rightfully move up the rankings. The Aggies lost at home to Auburn in an offensive battle. LSU lost to Ole Miss who should have beaten the Aggies the weekend before and did beat Texas earlier this year. UCLA lost a hard fought battle with Stanford and Clemson was destroyed at home by Florida State. But Louisville deserves the most thanks. They were in a great position to run the table on a ridiculously easy schedule and coast into a BCS bowl game or even the national championship if things got really crazy. Their loss at home to UCF was great football to watch, and put a dagger through any national championships hopes. Thanks Cards!
2. Is Florida State playing the best football in the country right now? I actually have no issues with them in the #2 BCS spot as of right now. That is by far the most dominant game I have seen between two heavy weights this year. While Clemson was overrated this year, they are still a really good team. They were getting the benefit of beating up on an overrated Georgia team that is not even ranked anymore and now find themselves plummeting themselves.
3. St. Louis versus Boston for the World Series? Yes please. Personally though, I just can't stand the Cardinals, mainly due to Game 6 against the Rangers. Still not ready to talk about that yet. It really isn't anything the Cardinals did; it is just that I go into flashbacks every time I see them it seems. So saying that, GO Sox!
4. With the Sooners going down last week, many thought that the Bears would not get to face a top 10 team this year. Well, the Red Raiders are now ranked 10th in the country, but there are still a few weeks and some big games before the Bears and Red Raiders meet in Arlington. With that being said, should Baylor be rooting for Tech to maximize the level of opposition for the Bears? Or does is make more sense to root for Oklahoma or Oklahoma State to beat the Red Raiders and help their profile as well? I do think all three of those teams are Top 20 teams at worst. But where these three are ranked is a big question for the Bears in terms or which will help them the most.
5. The Bears secured the commitment of Blake Lynch, a 4-star quarterback in the Scout network, but a player that is not defined by that one position, or really any position. Scout does not have an Athlete designation, but that is what fits Lynch perfectly. He plays quarterback in high school, and has shown a powerful arm. But it is his overall athleticism and skills that he could bring to any number of positions that make him such a high profile prospect. Funny enough, the Bears have two commits for the quarterback position in the 2015 class in Lynch and fellow 4-star prospect Chad President, and the goal has to be that neither end up at quarterback. The Bears are still heavily involved in Jarrett Stidham and the plan is to have him throwing the ball to Lynch and President, not competing with them for snaps.
5 Things I Know
1. The 2014 recruiting class is almost completely full. There are just a few spots left, so most of the work is going to be aimed at the 2015 class, as we just saw with the Lynch commitment. I have been saying this for months, but while the 2014 class has a chance to be a Top 15 group nationally, the 2015 class could be much better. With commitments on the board already from Lynch, President and offensive lineman Ronnie Major, this class is off to an awesome start. The Bears are also heavily involved in several more 4 and 5 star recruits. Again, enjoy the 2014 class, but prepare for the best class in Baylor history in 2015.
2. Baylor basketball is just a few weeks away, and I am VERY excited about that. The injury news to Allerik Freeman really hurts the Bears though. He was going to be the primary backup at both of the guard spots and could have been a starter if Royce O'Neal does not get his eligibility waiver approved.
3. Scott Drew and his Bears are ranked third in the Big 12 preseason rankings, and are just outside of the Top 25 in the major polls. I feel that is about right for the Bears as of now. Oklahoma State and Kansas are the two top dogs in the Big 12, with Baylor and Iowa State right behind them. I think after those four teams is a pretty big fall, but keep an eye on Oklahoma. I have a feeling Lon Kruger will have those guys up higher than 5th.
4. It took 8 weeks, but I finally moved Texas Tech up to the second spot. They have some big games coming up with the Sooners and Cowboys coming up in back to back weeks, and it will be a lot to ask of them or any team to go 2-0 in those games. I do think that the top 4 are very close in rankings, with any of OU, OSU or Tech being qualified to be 2nd.
5. Big 12 Rankings after Week 8
1. Baylor (6-0, 3-0)
2. Texas Tech (7-0, 4-0)
3. Oklahoma (6-1, 3-1)
4. Oklahoma State (5-1, 2-1)
5. Texas (4-2, 3-0)
6. West Virginia (3-4, 1-3)
7. Kansas State (2-4, 0-3)
8. TCU (3-4, 1-3)
9. Iowa State (1-5, 0-3)
10. Kansas (2-4, 0-3)