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Breakfast with Bevo: Countdown toward Texas vs. Baylor

Posted October 4th, 2014

Good morning. Breakfast is served.
It’s October 4th — 277 down, 88 to go.
And 27 till Halloween.
YESTERDAY: No. 18 BYU fell to Utah State, 35-20. The Cougars also lost their quarterback; Taysom Hill left in the second quarter due to a left leg fracture. MLB playoffs — (ALDS) Orioles 7, Tigers 6; Royals 4, Angels 1; (NLDS) Giants 3, Nationals 2; Cardinals 10, Dodgers 9. ACL kicked off with sunny skies and beautiful weather; Outkast and Beck ruled the night. In high school football, Bowie beat Westlake.
TODAY: Texas hosts No. 7-ranked Baylor (2:30, ABC, 1300). We’ll launch our game chat at 2. Other top games, for you Saturday sofa masters — 6-Texas A&M at 12-Mississippi State (11 a.m., ESPN); 3-Alabama at 11-Ole Miss (2:30, CBS); 4-Oklahoma at 25-TCU (2:30, Fox); 14-Stanford at 9-Notre Dame (2:30, NBC); 15-LSU at 5-Auburn (6, ESPN); and 19-Nebraska at 10-Michigan State (7, ABC). Have that remote ready at 2:30. Two NLDS playoff games are on tap — Giants at Nationals (4:30, Fox Sports 1) and Cardinals at Dodgers (8:30, MLB Network). And over at Zilker Park, tonight’s top draw is Eminem.

TOMORROW: It’s the Cowboys vs. Texans in a Lone Star showdown at Jerry World (noon, CBS). There’ll be two ALDS playoff games on a TBS double-header — Orioles at Tigers (2:45) and Angels at Royals (6:30). And the ACL festival will close out with Pearl Jam
— before they all come back next weekend to do it again.

Oct. 4 has a sports history. On this date, redshirt freshman Vince Young rallied No. 13 Texas to a 24-20 win at home over No. 16 Kansas State (2003); and Secretariat died, at the age of 19 (1989); the NFL, mired in a players’ strike, used scab players for the first time — and the average attendance dropped from 59,824 the week before to 16,947 (1987).

Texas has played 14 games on Oct. 4. The Longhorns are 11-2-1 in them, including wins in six of the last seven games on that date.
Last year on Oct. 4, Lake Travis posted a 43-0 shutout over Bowie, the Cincinnati Reds fired manager Dusty Baker, and the AP reported that former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice would be named to the College Football Playoff selection committee. Which she was.
Today’s sports birthdays: Derrick Rose (26), Drew Stubbs (30), A.C. Green (51), Dennis Cook (52) and Tony Larussa (70). Other notables: Alicia Silverstone (38) and Susan Sarandon (68).
TODAY’S TRIVIA: A.C. Green won three NBA titles with the Los Angeles Lakers, in 1987, 1988 and 2000. Name the Lakers’ starting five for those ’87 and ’88 title teams. (Answer’s at the end of Breakfast.)
TODAY’S LEAD: TEXAS vs. BAYLOR. Lots of storylines today. Will Baylor score a knockout, a technical knockout or will Texas pull off the Top 10 upset? Will Steve “Baylor is trash” Edmond or John “Baylor is still Baylor” Harris make an impact in this rivalry game? Will there be a 100-yard rusher? Or a 400-yard passer? And if so, what color unis will they be wearing?
Ten thoughts for today’s game:
No. 1: What’s the spread?: That was one of the first questions Charlie Strong actually asked us during Monday’s UT presser. This game started the week with Baylor as a 14-point favorite, and the line had moved to 16 1/2 by the end of the week. That’s the biggest spread facing an underdog Texas team in the past 20 years, and its third-biggest spread ever (behind Kansas State, which was a 28-point favorite in 1998 and Nebraska, which was a 20-point favorite in 1996. Texas upset the third-ranked Huskers that day, 37-27.
No. 2: What’s the plan?: Strong laid out his plan for beating Baylor on Monday. Simple enough — play good defense, avoid giving up the big play, don’t get into a shootout, sustain drives and keep Baylor’s offense off the field. We’ll see. The reality is that Malcolm Brown and Johnathan Gray will still have the same patchwork line trying to open holes in front of them, and that Tyrone Swoopes has yet to make BYU, UCLA or Kansas pay for stacking the box against the run.
No. 3: Getting to Petty: Baylor’s next sack allowed will be its first sack allowed this season. No one’s sacked a Bears QB yet. The Longhorns, meanwhile, have recorded 17 sacks in their first four games, the most through four games since 2000. Pressuring Bryce Petty, obviously, is a must, even if there aren’t a lot of sacks. How many times he’s sacked will be a key stat to watch for.
No. 4: Ranks: Baylor ranks No. 1 nationally in scoring (56.8 ppg), No. 4 in passing yards (401.3 ypg) and No. 24 in rushing yards (239.8 ypg). And the Bears rank ninth in scoring defense (13.8 ypg). Texas is No. 106 in scoring (21.3), No. 100 in passing yards (195.0), No. 105 in rushing yards (120.5) and No. 20 in scoring defense (17.0).
No. 5: Matchups: Key matchups today include the Texas defense vs. the Baylor offense; Texas CBs Quandre Diggs and Duke Thomas vs. Baylor WRs KD Cannon and Levi Norwood
No. 6: Triplets vs. Triplets: Texas’ top three offensive stars are QB Tyrone Swoopes (63-99-590, 5/1), RB Malcolm Brown (53-191-2) and WR John Harris (25-336-4). Baylor counters with QB Bryce Petty (66-101-913, 7/1), RB Shock Linwood (62-301-7) and WR KC Cannon (23-519-5).
No. 7: Will Harrison and/or Johnson play?: On past Mondays, Strong has told us the playing status for that week’s game for Texas’ suspended players. This Monday, he left the door open for the possible return of Daje Johnson and Desmond Harrison, who have missed the first four games but have been practicing. Strong said he was planning to talk to Johnson and Harrison “to see where we are,” and UT is saying they’ll both be a game-time decision. Johnson scored on an 84-yard run against Baylor in 2012.
No. 8: They have a history: Players who have stood out in past Texas-Baylor games … For Texas, Brown rushed for 131 yards on 25 carries in the 2013 game; Gray rushed for 56 yards and a TD in 2012; Jaxon Shipley returned a punt 50 yards in 2013 and had four catches for 121 yards, including a 78-yarder, in 2011; Josh Turner had an interception in 2012; Steve Edmond forced a fumble in 2012 and Mykkele Thompson recovered it.
No. 9: They have a history, too: For Baylor, Petty was 21 of 37 for 287 yards with two second-half TDs in 2013; Antwan Goodley had 8 catches for 114 yards and a TD in 2013 and Norwood caught a TD in 2013 too.
No. 10: Watching the crowd: There were still almost 7,000 tickets still available for this game late in the week. That’s surprising. But then again, Texas drew a home crowd of 93,201 for the opener against North Texas, which also was the first game of the Strong era; and 93,463 the following week for the revenge game against BYU. When’s the next crowd of 100,000-plus going to happen?
Our coverage, advancing the game: Our Sports Extra story from today centered around that humongo point spread ($), or at least humongo for Texas ($).   We also asked five key questions ($) about the game and looked at three Baylor players ($) that the Longhorns will be paying particularly close attention to. Other Texas-Baylor angles we’ve covered included a look at Texas’ intention to improve the gameday experience for fans ($) at home games, Art Briles‘ recruiting and development skills that have turned him into college football’s quarterback whisperer ($), and examined Baylor’s defense — yes, the Bears play defense, too ($). Oh, and we also profiled the Jet Pack Guy ($) from DKR home games. He’ll do his thing again today.
What others are writing: The Waco Tribune-Herald profiled Bears left tackle Spencer Drango, who was signed in Texas’ own backyard (Cedar Park). The Trib also looked at the matchup between Petty and Texas’ DBs, who have been picking off passes at a rapid pace, and put this week’s trash-talk/rivalry buzz in perspective. The Dallas Morning News looked at the defensive effort that’ll be needed by Texas today. And the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reminded us that despite all the hoopla over offenses and trash talking, this game has some major Big 12 implications for both sides.
Texas (2-2, 1-0) vs. No. 7 Baylor (4-0, 1-0): ABC, 2:30.
No. 4 Oklahoma (4-0, 1-0) at No. 25 TCU (3-0, 1-0): Fox, 2:30.
No. 23 Kansas State (3-1, 1-0) vs. Texas Tech (2-2, 0-1): ESPNU, 6.
Oklahoma State (3-1, 1-0) vs. Iowa State (1-3, 0-2): No TV. Kickoff is at 11 a.m.
West Virginia (2-2, 0-1) vs. Kansas (2-2, 0-1): No TV. Kickoff is at 3.
AROUND THE FORTY ACRES: A quick sweep of UT teams.
Football: Fans on San Jacinto Blvd. between MLK and 21st will be moved off the street and onto the sidewalk starting at 12:30 p.m. today. This is a change, and UT announced it this week. There should be signs alerting fans. And only cars that have a street parking permit for San Jac will be allowed to enter the street from MLK. … The Carolina Panthers signed Chris Ogbannaya on Monday.

Men’s basketball: Myles Turner was voted the Big 12’s preseason co-freshman of the year this week, along with Kansas’ Cliff Alexander. And Jonathan Holmes, who’ll be Texas’ only senior, was on the team’s honorable mention list along with Cam Ridley and Isaiah Taylor.


Women’s basketball: Details were announced this week for December’s SEC/Big 12 Challenge games in Little Rock. Texas and Texas A&M play at 12:30 p.m., followed by Oklahoma and Arkansas at 3. Both games will be shown on the SEC Network. Earlier this week, Nneka Enemkpali was voted onto the All-Big 12 preseason team, and Ariel Atkins was the league’s preseason freshman of the year.

Volleyball: No. 2-ranked Texas (10-0) plays at Kansas on Sunday (1 p.m., FSN). The Longhorns lead the all-time series, 35-4 and have won 20 straight matches over the Jayhawks.
Softball: Five pitchers combined for 15 strikeouts and a three-hit shutout in a 5-0 win over McLennan Community College. Erin Shireman hit a home run and Kelli Hanzel went 2 for 2 with 2 RBIs. It was Texas’ fall opener. Next up is a Sunday game against the University of the Inarnate Word (2 p.m., McCombs Field, LHN).
Men’s tennis: Adrien Berkowicz on Friday advanced to the singles consolation round of 16 at the ITA All-American Championships in Tulsa. He’ll face Tennessee’s Mikelis Libietis, who’s ranked 24th nationally, today. In the main singles draw round of 32, Texas’ Soren Hess-Olsen, ranked No. 5, was upset by Louisville’s Sebastian Stiefelmey, who’s ranked 110th. Lloyd Glasspool fell to USC’s No. 2-ranked Yannick Hanfmann in the round of 32 on Friday as well. Glasspool and Hess-Olsen begin play in the consolation doubles draw today.

Women’s tennis: At the ITA All-American Championships in California, Texas’ All-American Breaunna Addison lost in straight sets in the second round of the singles draw on Friday.

TRIVIA ANSWER: The starting lineups for both the 1987 and 1988 NBA champion Los Angeles Lakers were Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Magic Johnson, James Worthy, Byron Scott and A.C. Green.
ON OCT. 4 …
1988: Televangelist Jim Bakker was indicted for fraud.
1957: “Leave It To Beaver” premiered on CBS — on the same day that the Soviet Union launched Sputnik 1, the first man-made satellite to orbit the Earth.
1876: Texas A&M University opened, known then as AMC, or the Agricultural and Mechanical College of Texas. It was the first public institution of higher education in the state.
TODAY’S LITTLE NUMBER: 1. Number of Big 12 players on Mel Kiper’s current 2015 NFL Draft board (No. 1, Oregon QB Marcus Mariota; No. 2, USC DL Leonard Williams; No. 3, Alabama WR Amari Cooper; No. 4, Texas A&M OT Cedric Ogbuehi; No. 5, Nebraska DE Randy Gregory; No. 6, Missouri DE Shane Ray; No. 7, Iowa OT Brandon Scherff; No. 8, Stanford OT Andrus Peat; No. 9, Georgia RB Todd Gurley; No. 10, Baylor DE Shawn Oakman.

TODAY’S BIGGER NUMER: 5. Texas’ national ranking in sacks per game (4.3).

TODAY’S BIG NUMBER: 16 1/2. Point spread for today’s game. Baylor’s the big favorite.
OK, Breakfast is over. Thanks for stopping by.

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