Before the offseason kerfuffle at Baylor, and even in to the early season, most Wildcat fans had this game chalked-up as a loss.
But the Baylor Bears entering today’s contest have lost three-straight, and many fans and members of the media are openly discussing if the Bears have given up on 2016. After their 1-point loss to Texas three weeks ago, Baylor went back home and got annihilated by an average-at-best TCU squad, and then went to Norman and got pounded by the Oklahoma Sooners. The last two games Baylor looked more like the 2009 Bears than the 2015 Bears.
And to add injury to insult, starting senior QB Seth Russell has again been knocked out with a season-ending injury. Two years in a row, Baylor will face Kansas State with a freshman QB making his first career start.
While Baylor will be looking to end their losing streak, your Kansas State Wildcats will also be looking to end a losing streak. The Wildcats have not beaten Baylor since a RGIII-led Baylor squad went to Manhattan in 2011 and walked out with a 36-35 loss thanks to a timely interception by Arthur Brown. That’s right, K-State has now lost 4-straight to the Bears, starting with the game-that-shall-not-be-discussed in 2012. If there were ever a good time to break the streak, this year would be it.
The key for K-State leaving Waco with a big “W” will be the defense.
The Cats offense should be able to move the ball against a Baylor defense that is below-average against the run (as long as they RUN THE DANG BALL). And Jesse Ertz, Charles Jones, and Alex Barnes, who combined for nearly 300 rushing yards two weeks ago, should be up for that task.
But Jordan Willis and his line buddies will need to get pressure against Zach Smith early and often to take pressure off whoever has the dubious honor of covering KD Cannon and Ishmael Zamora (and hopefully Duke Shelley is back to full speed after leaving the game against Oklahoma State is an apparent foot/ankle injury). Luckily for the Cats, Baylor’s leading rusher Terence Williams left the game versus OU in the first quarter last Saturday with a knee injury and is not expected to play, and second-leading rusher Shock Linwood was suspended last week and may be on a very short leash.
The Cats will take every bit of help they can get to become bowl eligible today and set up next Saturday’s Senior Day tilt for even greater things.
Be sure to hit our pregame content, including AMS’s How to Watch post for all your vital media information and TB’s Kicking the Tires preview for equally vital on-field information and stats.