BAYLOR-WASHINGTON STATE PREVIEW: Briles, Bears prep for upcoming home game against Cougars

by dentonramsey

BAYLOR-WASHINGTON STATE PREVIEW: Briles, Bears prep for upcoming home game against Cougars

By Denton Ramsey, Big 12 Fans Baylor Correspondent

WACO, Texas – Week three of the college football season is nearly underway, and come Saturday afternoon at Floyd Casey Stadium the Baylor Bears football team has a chance to shine – as well as an opportunity to move above .500 under head coach Art Briles.

Last week against Northwestern State, the Bears showed what they were truly made of – garnering 537 yards of total offense in a 51-6 blowout victory over the Demons.

On Saturday, Sept. 13 at 11:40 a.m. CT, Baylor (1-1) will face Washington State (0-2) – as Briles and company aim to pick up their second straight victory at home. Saturday’s game will be televised nationally on FSN.

“Washington State is a very good football team; they are a team who has had a lot of success over the last few years,” Briles said. “In 2002 they played in the Rose Bowl, in 2003 they went to the Holiday Bowl where they beat Texas. Last year they won three games in the PAC-10. If they had a more suitable conference schedule last year they would have been a bowl team. They had a record of 5-7, missed out by one win to be bowl eligible. These guys who are fifth year seniors coming in after the Holiday Bowl in ’03, they have been around a program that has had a lot of success.

“They are going to come to Baylor determined, but they’re going to walk into a stadium with a bunch of determined guys on the other team too. We are still fighting ourselves and getting ready to become a really good football team, and every week is an opportunity for us to get better and that’s the way we’re approaching it.”

Once again, the Bears will be turning to freshman quarterback Robert Griffin to lead the charge on Saturday against the Cougars.

“What he did for our team, he maintained his composure, protected the football, took what the defense gave us and that is what we’re looking for,” Briles said. “We talked about his job to make everyone on the field look better and that is the point that we are getting to. Our thing with Northwestern, as it will be with Washington State, is that we are going to win upfront on both sides of the ball.

“I haven’t ever planned to be smart but I am smart enough to figure that out. If you have good O-line and D-Line with you, you’ve got a good football team and our guys are getting better upfront. That is going to give us some chances to have success this year. We are striving to become dominant on both sides up front.”

So what will the Bears do more of come Saturday at Floyd Casey: run, or pass?

“Every week is different,” Briles said. “We would like to stay balanced but it depends on how people are playing and how we feel we match up against the opponent. We aren’t going around this week thinking that all of a sudden we have arrived and we have all the answer.

“If anyone has any questions on how to play football or perform on the field we can give them the answers. We feel like we were able to come back after a disgusting opening game and perform at a better level, but we still understand that it’s the bridge we haven’t gotten to yet. We have a long way to go and a lot of things to prove before we get there.”

Denton Ramsey may be reached via email at