Clay Fuller

Briles confirms return of Baylor receivers for Iowa State

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Baylor’s offense is about to get a bit more depth thanks to the return of some injured players. Wide receivers Corey Coleman and Antwan Goodley and running back Devin Chafrin are all expected to return to the team this weekend when the Bears take on Iowa State in Big 12 play.

It was reported last week Baylor was expecting to have Coleman and Goodley as well as Clay Fuller return for this weekend’s game, and head coach Art Briles confirmed that is the plan for this week.

Goodley was lost to a quad injury and Coleman suffered a hamstring. Both injuries took place in offseason camps. Goodley attempted to come back in the season opener against SMU but aggravated his injury. Chafrin suffered a high ankle sprain in the SMU game as well.

Baylor is off to an explosive start on offense, as you might have expected, regardless of the injury concerns. With Big 12 conference play opening up, it will be important for the defending Big 12 champions to be as healthy as possible. Oklahoma has emerged as the team to beat in the conference, but a healthy Baylor figures to be just as capable of getting through the season and winning the conference once again.

Baylor expected to get three WRs back for ISU game

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Not that it actually needed them, but Baylor was down all four of its leading returning wide receivers from 2013 for last Friday’s 63-12 romp over Buffalo.

For the Bears’ next game, they should be back to near full-strength in the receiving corps.

On his teleconference Monday, head coach Art Briles confirmed that Antwan Goodley (pictured), Corey Coleman and Clay Fuller will play in BU’s next game against Iowa State.  Neither Goodly (quad) nor Coleman (hamstring) nor Fuller (clavicle) have caught a pass this season after combining for 138 receptions last season.  Goodly alone accounted for 71 of those.

There’s no word on when Levi Norwood (47-733-4 in 2013) will return. Two weeks ago, Norwood underwent wrist surgery and was originally scheduled to be out for at least three weeks. That would’ve put him back on the field for the Cyclones game, although that doesn’t appear to be the case as of today.

With all of that experience sidelined, youth has been served for Baylor in the passing game.  True freshman KD Cannon has proven to be one of the early breakout stars in the whole of college football, catching 14 passes for 471 yards and five touchdowns.  The receiving yards lead the FBS, while his receiving scores are tied for second nationally.

Baylor loses another WR: Levi Norwood to undergo wrist surgery

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Baylor will now be without its four top returning receivers from 2013 on Saturday, as senior Levi Norwood will undergo wrist surgery and miss at least three weeks, per the Waco Tribune-Herald’s John Werner.

Art Briles’ Bears were already missing Antwan Goodley, Corey Coleman and Clay Fuller for Saturday’s date with FCS side Northwestern State. Goodley, Baylor’s leading returning receiver with 71 catches for 1,339 yards and 13 touchdowns a year ago, is out with a quad injury.

Norwood caught 47 passes for 733 yards and eight touchdowns a year ago, while Coleman had 35 catches for 527 yards and two touchdowns while Fuller had 32 catches for 512 yards and three touchdowns.

But there’s no need to panic in Waco. Baylor’s next four games are against Northwestern State, at Buffalo and at Iowa State, with a bye week sandwiched between Buffalo and Iowa State. That’s plenty of time for these four receivers (and quarterback Bryce Petty) to get healthy before Oct. 4’s date with Texas in Austin.

Bear Trap: Oklahoma State dismantles Baylor, controls Big 12

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For the first time this season, the No. 4 Baylor  (9-1, 6-1 Big 12) offense was not invincible. In fact, at teams it was impotent. Perhaps it was the venue, where the Bears have not won in 74 years, or perhaps it was the first time the Bears were met by an opponent capable of scoring and defending everything Baylor does well. No. 10 Oklahoma State (10-1, 7-1 Big 12) played about as perfect a game you could play in a 49-17 taming of Baylor.

Oklahoma State quarterback Clint Chelf had his second career 300-yard passing performance with 337 yards, a new career high. both of Chelf’s 300-yard games have come against Baylor. The Cowboys quarterback threw two touchdown passes before getting a rest in the fourth quarter. He completed 18 of 24 attempts. his top target was Tracy Moore, who had five catches for 126 yards and a touchdown. The Cowboys outscored Baylor 35-14 in the second half after taking a statement 14-3 lead to the half.

If you watched Baylor for the first time this season on Saturday night you may have never guessed it, but Baylor’s offense came in to the game averaging 61.2 points and amassing 683 yards of total offense per game. That is how good Oklahoma State played on the defensive side of the football. Baylor’s pass offense was shut down by an aggressive defensive secondary, with Oklahoma State not allowing Antwan Goodley, Levi Norwood or Clay Fuller much room to work with as they have most of the season. Baylor’s recently emerging Heisman candidate at quarterback, Bryce Petty, had a rough night from start to finish, ending his night completing 28 of 48 attempts for 359 yards and two touchdowns. Most of those yards came in the second half when the game was well out of hand. Petty also missed a snap and failed to cover it up before Oklahoma State’s Tyler Patmon and returned 78 yards for a touchdown. That particular sequence ay have altered the entire momentum of the game, as Baylor was on the door step and about to cut a 25-point deficit down to 17 points with time to play. It still would have been an uphill climb for Baylor, but it would have been less steep.

Oklahoma State now has complete control of the Big 12 race with one game to play. The Cowboys get a week off before hosting rival Oklahoma (9-2, 6-2 Big 12) in the annual Bedlam game. A win by Oklahoma State will clinch the Big 12 championship and the automatic BCS berth that goes with it.That would send Oklahoma State to their second BCS bowl game in three seasons if they can finish the job against the Sooners.

Baylor’s BCS chances took a bit of a hit, but it is still too early to completely rule out the Bears from the BCS bowl picture. While the BCS championship game is now out of the mix, Baylor can still be in play for an at-large bid. It may be a reach, but if Baylor ends the season with regular season wins against TCU and Texas, Baylor could remain an option for a BCS bowl game. The problem is Fresno State or Northern Illinois are currently in line to grab one of the BCS spots, leaving one less spot available to an at-large option from a power conference.

Of course, Baylor can still win the Big 12 if they win their next two games and Oklahoma tops Oklahoma State.