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1. I said at the beginning of the year, that this season was going to be a roller coaster ride. And that we'd just have to hang in there for the ups and downs and just enjoy the ride. It was hard to listen to my own advice. Especially after the 4 game losing streak. But I tried to, and I was able to keep my belief that some how, some way, Art Briles was going to get this team to a bowl game. That man never disappoints.
2. I also tried to stick by Coach Bennett. And I'm glad I did. He is the right guy for our team and our school. I'm damn glad he is in the green and gold (Mostly gold).
3. Nick Florence. He did it. I had SERIOUS doubts about him being what this team needed. And I was a little vocal about it . But the 2nd half of the season he really settled in. And his numbers are just incredible. These last 5 games he has played really smart. He knows when to run it, knows when to throw it and knows when to throw it away. Big props to Nick. I was wrong about him and he really showed me. He will be missed next year.
3. I wonder what the reason was that Lache didn't play more at the beginning of the season. Was it CAB's loyalty to his senior running back? Was it that Lache didn't understand the offense - especially the blocking responsibilities of a RB in our system? I don't know. But this whole season changed when he started playing. The importance of a good running back in CAB's offense is SO CRUCIAL. It helps our defense more than you can measure. Our drives and TOP these last 5 games have been completely different than the first 7 games. They're alot of HS players who come in with hype, but Lache has met it and exceeded it. Let's all enjoy his final season at Baylor next year.
4. Our linebackers. Wrong again. Said Eddie and Bryce weren't Big 12 Caliber. I don't know what happened, but these guys became playmakers the second half of the season. Saw some of it against SMU, then it kinda went away. But they ended up have a very good season. Brian - I owe you a beer(s).
5. This season. IMO, this season is much better/bigger than the 2010 season. While it's much more fun to get bowl eligible early (and much less stress), the way we finished this season, and the number of ranked teams/teams with winning records that we beat crushes our results in 2010. And there was so much riding on this season. Way to deliver team.
6. Fans. I'm not going to harp on this anymore. But having our last 3 home games all be under 40K is just unacceptable. It's not big time football and it's not the mark of a real football program. This has to change.
7. It's easy to play this game now, but this team could have won the conference if it had played this way all season. At the beginning of the year, the players were quoted several times saying that was their goal. It wasn't a crazy goal at all. This team WAS that close to making it happen. The best 5 loss team EVER?
Just an incredibly enjoyable season. Boy they go fast these days.
What other thoughts are out there?
I believe Lache not playing early was a combination of things.
First, we know that Briles is extremely loyal esp. to his seniors. He probably felt that Salubi deserved every chance to win an keep the job. It just did'nt work out.
Also, blocking schemes can be complicated and apparently the RB plays a role in calling the schemes at the line of scrimmage. Briles was probably just not completely comfortable with Lache at the beginning of the year in this regard.
Totally agree that Seastrunk made a huge difference, not only in his big play ability but being able to run the ball consitently actually gave our defense more rest. Probably a big reason for the D's improvement over the last 5 games.
great post! i think you summarized it all, nicely, X.
i'd have commented on the improvement of the O-line over the past 5 or so games though. i know that Lache had a lot to do with the improvement in our running game, but the O-line was REALLY good down the stretch also. Lache wouldn't have been able to be Lache if the O-line hadn't gotten better. they were money late in the season.
i think you nailed it in the comparison between this year's team and 2010. i don't think i'll ever forget that 2010 team because of what they were able to do for us, long-suffering, Bear fans, but they were a team that no bowl caliber team was afraid of at the end of the season. I wouldn't want any part of the 2012 version of the Bears in a bowl game, with the way they finished the season.
Good post. Agree on most points, especially the attendance issue. For years we (yes, I realize we're largely speaking to the choir) blamed the product on the field as a reason not show up on gamedays. The mantra of "put a good field on the team and the rest will take care of itself" became a staple for us fans as a reason for poor attendance the better half of the 2000s.
Well this team has put together three fantastic years in a row and it's time for Baylor Nation to step up and fulfill our half of the equation.
This starts December 27th and should carry over in full force September 7th, 2013.
There is something interesting I would like to share regarding what I have noticed while watching the players on the sidelines the past few games and it's this --there are A LOT of non-senior leaders on this team.
Obviously most of us are not privy to what happens behind-the-scenes, however from simply watching players like Ahmad, Lackey, Glasco and a few others interact and fire up their teammates on the sideline, it appears these individuals -in large part- are the thought-of and perceived leaders of this team...as juniors.
It cannot be understated how important it is to have individuals such as these as a part of the team as we head in the off-season and into next season.
This post was edited by BaylorBJM 16 months ago
For what it is worth. I have a friend who talked to Briles. He was raving about Lache and asked why he didn't play more early. Briles response was -" he wasn't ready."
This post was edited by Old300Bear 16 months ago
im not sure what most of us on this board can do about the attendance.
I think we all understood Lache's quick strike, score anytime he touches the ball ability but what I didn't realize early on was how hard he is to bring down. I can think of numerous times when I thought he was stopped and he just continued to move the pile. This guy's a load.
I know we've had many great backs in the past like Walter, Robert Strait, Jerrod Douglass, etc. but I haven't been this excited about a Baylor RB since Ronnie Bull.
Have been told by several very good sources that Lache just didn't have a good grasp of the offensive schemes early on. Some he caught on to and others were modified for a better fit. Also, are you thinking Lache's last season as a Bear is next year because he'll leave early? Because he still has two years of eligibility remaining, correct?
That seems to be the concensus. If he has a monster year, most think he'll go.
It's all in the number
Yes, he still has two years of eligibility. It will be interesting seeing how next year plays out for him. There aren't a ton of NFL RB's who left early and were drafted high that I can think of outside of AD and Trent Richardson. I'm sure I'm forgetting some though.
He'll have two years of eligibility. I had the same question in another thread and several people commented that he will probably enter the draft after next year. The reasons those posters stated seemed sound to me. As much as I'd like to see him playing for the Bears for two more years, if he picks up next year where he is leaving off this year, he'll have a huge year and will probably never have a better shot at going relatively high in the draft.
Yes, that is what I meant. He has two more years, but I fully anticipate him going pro and getting paid.
I would also be SHOCKED if Cyril comes back next year. I've heard too much to make me believe he'll return.
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