By: Nathan Keil | Sports Writer
Baylor wasted little time showcasing their potent offense and finding the end zone. After forcing Northwestern State to a three and out on their opening drive, Baylor drove 59 yards in six plays, aided by a 42 yard run by senior running back Shock Linwood. It was capped off by a 13 yard touchdown scamper by sophomore running back Terrence Williams to put the Bears up 7-0, less than five minutes in.
After forcing the Demons into their second punt of the game, the Bears took over at the Northwestern State 31 yard line. However, the Bears’ drive stalled out at the 6 yard line, forcing Grobe to settle for a 23 yard field goal from junior kicker Chris Callahan, increasing Baylor’s lead to 10-0.
After watching another drive seemingly stall out inside the red zone, acting head coach Jim Grobe decided to roll the dice and trust his senior quarterback Seth Russell. After calling timeout, Russell connected with red shirt freshman tight end Sam Tecklenburg on a 4 yard touchdown, giving the Bears a 17-0 lead.
The Bears continued to show no signs of letting up despite finding themselves on the wrong side of a replayed call that overturned a 39 yard completion to sophomore inside receiver Chris Platt. Baylor responded by relying heavily on the rushing attack of Linwood and Williams, but Russell eventually found junior wide receiver KD Cannon on a six yard touchdown strike, making it 24-0 Baylor after one quarter.
Baylor’s first real mistake came on their first drive of the second quarter when a holding penalty, nullified a punt return for a touchdown by red shirt freshman Tony Nicholson. This mistake proved costly for the Bears as they were forced to settle for another field goal, this one a 33 yard attempt from Callahan.
Baylor would add a five yard touchdown pass from Russell to junior tight end Jordan Feuerbacher, a 10 yard scoring strike to red shirt freshman wide receiver Pooh Stricklin and a 1 yard touchdown plummet from Williams, his second of the first half to round out the first thirty minutes of play.
Despite moving the ball at will, both on the ground and through the air, Baylor’s defense has been the story of the first half. The Bears’ defense stymied the Demons, holding them to just 13 total yards at half, all of them coming right before the break. However, the Bears were penalized six times for 50 yards.
At halftime, Baylor leads Northwestern State 48-0.