Baylor vs. Oklahoma Recap

Baylor vs. Oklahoma
Photo credit: Ray Carlin- Associated Press

Is there such a thing as a perfect day? Like one where No. 18 Baylor Football (8-2, 5-2) upsets No. 4 Oklahoma (9-1, 6-1) in front of a sold out crowd in Waco and then Texas Football loses to Kansas in overtime for their fifth-straight loss while Texas Basketball was defeated by Gonzaga? Incredibly enough, yesterday held all three scenarios and brought Baylor fans more joy than anything in the world could have (oh! and Matt Campbell was devastated watching Iowa State lose to Texas Tech on a 62-yard last second field goal!). The Bears hosted Oklahoma as Fox Sports’ Big Noon Kickoff team came to Waco with almost all of the hosts anticipating a huge Sooner victory to continue their undefeated record. However after Baylor’s devastating loss to unranked TCU last week, the Bears came out firing on both sides of the ball earning, according to Baylor Athletics, “Baylor’s first win over a top-10 opponent since December 29, 2015 against No. 10 North Carolina in the Russell Athletic Bowl.” The victory was the Bears’ first over Oklahoma since 2014 and they also handed OU head coach Lincoln Riley the lowest point total in his coaching history. After an extremely low-scoring first half where both teams’ defenses showed out, the Bears took control in the third quarter and notched 3 consecutive scores to take a commanding lead. Baylor’s defense was arguably the star of the whole game, but it was junior QB Gerry Bohanon who quickly moved on from last week’s mistakes and played one of his best performances of the season. Bohanon completed 12 of 21 passing attempts for 117 yards with 1 TD and 1 interception and recorded a career-high 107 yards on 9 carries for 2 TDs. The Bears totaled 414 offensive yards (averaging about 6.1 yards per play) compared to OU’s 260 and somehow lost the penalty game (which is what happens when the refs don’t ever call a holding on Oklahoma) with 7 for a loss of 55 yards.

The Sooners got the ball to start the game and the Baylor defense immediately forced a 3-and-out with 2 consecutive tackles for loss by senior Ss JT Woods and Jalen Pitre and then by Woods and sophomore LB Matt Jones. Bohanon completed an 11-yard pass to senior WR Tyquan Thornton and senior WR Drew Estrada rushed for 5 yards. Senior RBs Trestan Ebner and Abram Smith ran for 3 and 5 yard gains before Bohanon threw a 12-yarder to Thornton. Smith added 3 yards on the ground and Bohanon ran for 13, but Estrada gained 0 and Bohanon had 8 yards on 3rd and 10 on the Oklahoma 12. On 4th and 2, Bohanon threw an incomplete pass intended for Thornton and turned the ball over on downs. On OU’s 3rd down, QB Caleb Williams threw an interception to senior CB Kalon Barnes who grabbed the pass at Oklahoma’s 37-yard-line. Smith lost 1 yard, Ebner gained 10 and then lost 5, and the Bears were left scoreless when freshman K Isaiah Hankins missed a 51-yard field goal. However, OU attempted a 51-yard field goal of their own, which they missed and kept the game tied 0-0. With a minute and a half left in the 1st quarter, Bohanon threw 2 incomplete passes, Ebner ran for 13 yards, and Smith added 7 yards.

Smith rushed for 3 yards to open the 2nd quarter, but Bohanon’s next pass was intercepted at the Oklahoma 22. Pitre recorded a tackle for loss, but the Sooners scored to take a 7-0 lead. Bohanon threw a 10-yard pass to Thornton, Ebner rushed for 1 yard, and Smith added 29 yards on 3 carries. Bohanon completed a 16-yard pass to Estrada and an OU face mask penalty moved the Bears upfield. Ebner ran for 3 yards, Smith lost 2, and Bohanon connected with Thornton on an 8-yard pass in the end zone to tie the game, 7-7. Junior CB Al Walcott broke up a Williams pass, sophomore DL Gabe Hall sacked Williams for a loss of 6 yards, and sophomore DT Siaki Ika notched a QB hurry before OU’s kicker missed his 2nd field goal attempt and kept the score even. Ebner lost 4 yards on the ground and Smith gained 16, but a Baylor illegal shift penalty pushed the Bears back and ended the 1st half.

Baylor received the ball for the 2nd half and immediately rushed for 28 yards on the first play. Bohanon threw a 3-yard pass to junior TE Ben Sims and Smith gained 0 yards on his rushing attempt, but OU’s unsportsmanlike penalty gave the Bears an extra 15 yards and a 1st down. Smith lost 2 yards and Bohanon notched a 7-yard completion to Ebner before Hankins made a 32-yard field goal to give Baylor a 10-7 lead. Oklahoma earned a 1st down, but an OU miscue led to Ika’s QB hurry and Williams threw his second interception of the day, this time to Walcott (the first intercepted pass of his career) at the Baylor 39. Bohanon again rushed for a 23-yard gain, but he was sacked for a loss of 5 yards and threw an incomplete pass. Bohanon’s pass to Ebner was complete for 23 yards and the QB connected with senior WR R.J. Sneed for 9 yards before Oklahoma forced a fumble and recovered it at their 16-yard-line. Junior CB Mark Milton broke up a Williams pass, senior LB Terrel Bernard sacked Williams for a loss of 4 yards, and sophomore LB Matt Jones added his own sack for a loss of 11 yards to force OU’s punt. Bohanon rushed for 18 yards before completing a pass to Ebner for a 4-yard loss. Ebner rushed for 7 yards on 2 carries and junior P Issac Power (I’ve been spelling his name wrong for literal years) notched his first punt of the day. Oklahoma surprisingly switched out Williams for backup QB (slash former starter) Spencer Rattler who went 3-and-out after being sacked for a loss of 1 yard by junior DL TJ Franklin on 3rd and 9 to end the 3rd quarter.

On the opening drive of the quarter, Smith ran for 75 yards (the longest of his career) before being tackled at the OU 8. Ebner lost 2 yards on the carry, but the Sooners had a horse collar penalty to give the Bears 4 extra yards. Ebner lost 1 yard before Bohanon had the keeper and rushed 5 yards into the end zone for Baylor’s lead, 17-7. After 4 minutes of Oklahoma’s drive, Bernard sacked Rattler for a loss of 9 yards and forced the OU punt. Smith rushed for 9 yards on 2 carries and Ebner lost 4. Bohanon threw a 2-yarder to Ebner and connected with Sneed on a 20-yard ball to sandwich Smith’s 15-yard gain and 2-yard loss. Ebner rushed twice for 18 yards, Smith added 3, and Bohanon did a bootleg again to run 14 yards for the Baylor TD and a 24-7 lead. Oklahoma scored on a 1.5 minute drive to make the score 24-14 Baylor, but a Sooner unnecessary roughness penalty pushed them back to the 20 upon attempting their onside kick, which Ebner recovered for the Bears. With 2:26 and 0 Oklahoma timeouts left, Smith rushed for 6 yards, a bad snap lost the Bears 2 yards, and Bohanon ran for 3. On 4th and 3, Hankins made a 42-yard field goal, but Oklahoma roughing the snapper gave Baylor a 1st down. The Bears knelt the ball twice and took a timeout and when it appeared the time had run out, the students rushed the field. However, there was still 3 seconds left, so the students were pushed back, Lincoln Riley threw an absolute temper tantrum, and the Bears elected instead to kick the field goal again and Hankins made a 32-yarder to secure the final 27-14 victory.

4 Baylor athletes saw rushing attempts including Smith (20 carries for 148 yards and his 7th 100+ rushing yard game of the season), Bohanon (9 carries for 107 yards and 2 TDs), Ebner (13 carries for 41 yards), and Estrada (2 carries for 5 yards). 5 received passes including Thornton (4 catches for 41 yards and 1 TD), Ebner (4 catches for 28 yards), Sneed (2 catches for 29 yards), Estrada (1 catch for 16 yards), and Sims (1 catch for 3 yards). The defense amassed 50 tackles with 9 for a loss of 48 yards (Bernard, Pitre, Woods, Franklin, senior LB Bryson Jackson, Hall, Jones), 5 sacks for a loss of 26 yards (Bernard, Franklin, Hall, Jones), 1 forced fumble (Jones), 2 interceptions (Walcott, Barnes), 2 pass break ups (Walcott, senior S Christian Morgan), and 2 QB hurries (Ika).

No. 11 Baylor will travel to Manhattan to face Kansas State (7-3, 4-3) on Saturday at 4:30 p.m. (CT).


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