2:14 P.M., MONDAY, OCTOBER 22, 2012
BY JUSTIN CANGE
63 points wasn't enough three weeks ago in Morgantown, so why would Baylor fans think scoring 50 points would do the job in Austin on Saturday?
Once again, the Bears prolific offense was outlasted by a demoralizing defensive effort that netted Baylor's third consecutive defeat. The team remains winless in conference play and in dire straits as a potential bowl bid looks less likely each week.
For fans, it may be easy to point the blame at the defense. Texas ran all over Baylor on Saturday, their quarterback found open receivers on third down and Baylor once again whiffed on enough tackles to give a cold to anyone on the sidelines.
However, the reason the Bears have lost each of their last three games is much less complex than figuring out a way to improve the nation's lowest-ranked defense. Baylor is not forcing any turnovers and with the margin of error already lower than the need for the next Carly Rae Jepsen single, the defense is not even giving themselves a fighting chance.
Once again on Saturday, the Bears offense was brilliant and efficient throughout most of the game, but stumbled just enough with untimely turnovers to seal their fate in a 56-50 loss to the Longhorns.
For the Bears, the formula for success (or lack thereof is simple) three games with zero forced turnovers equals three straight losses.
Baylor can believe what they want about their plight this year in the Big 12. They have been blasted, wrote off and considered an afterthought now. This is only natural for a team that has surrendered 175 points since starting conference play. The truth of the matter, however is that had Baylor forced just one turnover against either West Virginia or Texas, the Bears would be 5-1 and would be heading to Ames this week on the verge of clinching their third straight bowl game.
Instead, Baylor heads north as an underdog. They're fully capable of outscoring Iowa State, heck they're fully capable of running up the score on the Cyclones, but they're equally prone to getting in a slugfest which they we won't be likely to prevail in on the road.
With the second half of the season set to begin Saturday, Baylor football is now at a crossroads.