7 Opponent Questions

No one expected Baylor to be leading the Big 12 South at this point, but the Bears are one the hottest teams in the conference heading into Austin. Come inside as BearsIllustrated.com fills Texas fans in on everything they need to know about Baylor heading into the weekend.

1.) I think many expected Baylor to bounce back this season and even get bowl eligible. That said, did anyone predict them to be winning the Big 12 South at this point?

"No, simply because you would assume some other Big 12 team would be undefeated at this point. Having said that, no question that Baylor's schedule set up very favorably through the first 8 games, and many predicted if they were going to become bowl-eligible this season, they would need to do it early."

2.) Do you think being ranked will put a little extra pressure on the Bears this week against Texas?

"No, the pressure is now off the Bears. For at least the last 9 or 10 years, every Baylor team has been asked the same question - when will you get back to a bowl game? In every coach's tenure, it has been a goal that carries through to the players. The first step has always been to get back to that bowl game. So now that they have that burden off their minds, there's a great chance Baylor actually can play a little looser."  

3.) A 45-10 loss to TCU. What did the Horned Frogs do in that game to shut Baylor down so effectively?

"Baylor was out of the game from the beginning. TCU's offense was so on fire in the first half, that Baylor got way behind early, and could not go through the same progression offensively that you have seen in other games. TCU also made sure Robert Griffin was not going to beat them with his legs, and rarely gave him much room to breathe at all."  

 4.) Everyone talks about Griffin and they should, but Jay Finley has done a really nice job this season. Talk about his play and how crucial he has been to the offense?

"Jay Finley had an excellent season 2 years ago, but was hampered by injuries all last year. Even through fall camp, Jay was held out as he was trying to get back to full strength. With him finally returning to health, you have seen Jay really start to come on in the last few weeks. Jay gives teams something else they have to worry about. He is not a shifty, speed guy, but a quality all-around, punishing back. Jay would tell you a lot of credit goes to the offensive line."    

5.What in the injury situation looking like this week?

"Like all teams at this stage in the season, Baylor has a few guys banged up this week, mostly on defense. They have missed several guys on the defensive line throughout the weeks, and backups Chris Bufford and Terrance Lloyd figure to miss the Texas game. In addition, the cornerback situation has been in flux all season due to injuries, and it is likely starting cornerback Chance Casey could miss the game.    

6.) Are you seeing a situation where as every win goes by, Baylor gets a little more confidence?

"I think so, but when your leader is Robert Griffin, you have a guy with a lot of confidence already. Griffin is a guy that has always won at everything he competed at, and that's a powerful thing at the quarterback position in college football. Whether it was the bad loss to TCU, or the close loss to TCU, Griffin and the team haven't really lost confidence all year that they could be different from Baylor teams in the past. As they enter the toughest part of their schedule though, everyone is watching to see if they can make it even further."  

 7.) Your unbiased prediction on this game?

"As an alum of Baylor University, I can't give you an "unbiased prediction" of the game. However, I do think if Baylor can put up some points in the first quarter, than they will stick around the whole game and have a shot to win. It seems Baylor teams in the the recent past might have hung around for a bit, but then allowed Texas to really go on a roll and let the game get out of hand, besides the TCU game, that has not happened to the Bears another time this season."

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