EditorsNote: removes reference to first 5-0 start in school history
Baylor escapes Kansas State, now 5-0
MANHATTAN, Kan.-- Half was plenty for Baylor on Saturday.
The 15th-ranked Bears had the ball barely half the time Kansas State did, and scored half the number of points they were averaging coming into the game, but a big fourth quarter was enough to help Baylor improve to 5-0 with a 35-25 victory in a Big 12 Conference game in front of 52,803 at Bill Snyder Family Stadium.
”We knew the way this season had gone it wasn’t going to continue like that,“ Baylor coach Art Briles said. ”Everything had been in our favor -- four games at home, catching everyone at a good time.
“We knew it would change. It was a very tough environment today. We came up here two years ago in the same situation, same circumstances, and didn’t get a win. I like the fact that we came up here and faced a lot of adversity and got the win.”
Baylor, now 2-0 in the Big 12, came into the game averaging 70.5 points per game, and 781.5 yards per game. The Bears gained only 451 yards -- just six more than Kansas State -- but they were able to put the game away late.
Baylor actually trailed for the second time all season at the end of the third quarter (Buffalo scored first in Baylor’s second game), but Bryce Petty led Baylor on two fourth-quarter touchdown drives. Petty passed for 342 yards and three touchdowns of more than 50 yards.
“They get big,” Petty said of his eyes when he sees those big plays develop in front of him. “If they had a camera in my facemask, my eyes get big. You can’t overthrow them.”
Briles said K-State’s defense deserves credit for holding Baylor so far under its average, both in yards and in points.
“A lot of our game is predicated by tempo,” Briles said. “We manage it with our run game, and we just couldn’t get in a good rhythm because they kept us out of it. They did a good job.”
This was no moral victory for Kansas State. Coach Bill Snyder was not happy with the points given up.
“(Holding them to half their average in points) is immaterial,” he said. “That’s way too many points to give up, no matter who you play. We can’t give up that many points. We have to do a much better job.”
Snyder said his team committed only four mistakes, but they were costly.
“In the first half of the ballgame we had four mistakes,” he said. “One of them was a late hit out of bounds. That’s discipline. Number two was letting somebody just run by you. Number three was letting somebody run by you. And number four was letting somebody run by you. It’s that simple.”
Kansas State (2-4, 0-3) trailed, 21-10, at halftime, but dominated the third quarter, scoring 15 consecutive points to take the lead.
The Wildcats opened the second half with a 13-play drive that covered 60 yards in 6:16, but the drive resulted only in a field goal.
However, following Baylor’s second three-and-out of the season (in 68 drives), Kansas State blocked the punt and took over on the Baylor 19.
John Hubert raced 17 yards on first down before quarterback Daniel Sams ran off-tackle for the touchdown. The two-point conversion attempt failed.
On the next drive, Ryan Mueller stripped Petty of the ball and recovered the fumble.
“My corners gave me enough time to get to the quarterback,” Mueller said of his play. “The quarterback rolled out to my side and I had to make the play. I saw the ball on the ground in front of me and I had to take it.”
K-State went 44 yards in 10 plays, with Sams scoring from the 2-yard line, and the Wildcats led 25-21, when they missed the two-point conversion.
However, Baylor answered with a five-play, 71-yard drive to retake the lead. The score came on Petty’s 56-yard touchdown pass to Tevin Reese and the Bears regained the lead 28-25.
Three of Baylor’s five touchdown drives took 1:12 or less.
Kansas State forced another three-and-out and moved to the Baylor 24, and on fourth-and-two tried a field goal to tie the game, but Jack Cantele’s 41-yard kick was wide left.
Baylor scored the insurance points on Glasco Martin’s 21-yard run with 1:16 left.
Baylor took the opening kickoff and marched 59 yards on 12 plays for the first score. The drive of 4:27 was the longest of the season for the Bears in terms of time. Petty’s 1-yard plunge came on fourth down after K-State held on the first three runs on first-and-goal from the 1.
Kansas State answered with a long drive, but got no points. K-State forced a Baylor punt on the ensuing drive, and then marched 78 yards in seven plays to score the tying touchdown on Sams’ 1-yard plunge on the first play of the second quarter.
The teams traded punts early in the second quarter, with Mark Krause’s kick pinning Baylor on its 5-yard line, but after Petty gained two yards on first down, he connected with Reese for a 93-yard touchdown, the second-longest touchdown pass in Baylor history.
Following Cantele’s 24-yard field goal for Kansas State, Baylor scored another quick touchdown when Petty hit Antwan Goodley for a 72-yard touchdown strike up the middle, giving Baylor a 21-10 lead.
NOTES: This game stopped a streak of six straight victories by the home team in this series. The last victory by the road team was in 2002, when K-State won in Waco 44-10. ... Five of Antwan Goodley’s six touchdown receptions are for more than 60 yards. ... Kansas State forced six Baylor punts. The Bears had punted only seven times in their first four games. Baylor also had their second and third three-and-outs of the season.