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at Baylor 48 ... Stephen F. Austin 0

CollegeFootballNews.com
Posted Sep 17, 2011


Week 3 CFN Fearless Prediction & Game Story - Stephen F. Austin at Baylor


2011 Predictions & Game Story 

Week 3 - SFA at Baylor

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Sept. 17 at Baylor 48 ... Stephen F. Austin 0
CFN Analysis: COMING

(AP) WACO, Texas -- Robert Griffin III continued his sterling start to the season and the No. 19 Baylor Bears celebrated their highest ranking since October 1991 by routing Stephen F. Austin 48-0 Saturday night in a game that was ended in the third quarter because of lightning.

During a 41-minute wait late in the first half, with Baylor already up 31-0, the schools agreed to skip halftime and to trim the final two quarters by 3 minutes each.

The game was halted for a second time with 2:58 left in the third quarter. Rather than wait it out, the coaches met at midfield, shook hands and decided to let the clock run out.

Griffin was 20 of 22 for 247 yards and three touchdowns, and ran eight times for 78 yards. He led Baylor (2-0) to scores on its first five drives.

The Lumberjacks, an FCS program, fell to 1-2.

Stephen F. Austin (1-1) vs. Baylor (1-0) Sept. 17, 7:00

Here’s The Deal … It seems like it’s been ten years since Baylor’s scintillating, amazing win over TCU that launched Robert Griffin as a Heisman candidate and showed that the team will be among the most explosive in America. It’ll be 15 days between games, and it’s not like the time off was needed before an easy stretch against SFA and Rice before launching into Big 12 play at Kansas State.

Now, the spotlight is on Griffin to see is he can keep bombing away down the field as the conductor of an attack that hunt up 564 yards on a defense that’s been among the best in the country over the past several seasons. Did the Bears cool off? How much more tuning is needed after coming out so hot? Anything less than a blowout win this week might send off a few warning signs that the TCU performance might have been a fluke.

It wasn’t a fluke.

Stephen F. Austin had a nice first game of its own, hanging up 82 points, 507 passing yards, and 161more on the ground against something called McMurry, but reality set in last week in a 34-23 loss to a strong Northern Iowa team. This should be one of the Southland’s better teams, and it needs to show it off over the next two weeks in the conference opener against Texas State before a showdown with the league’s best team, Central Arkansas.

Why Stephen F. Austin Might Win: The passing game is there to keep up the pace if needed. The video game numbers against McMurry aside, Brady Attaway is a good, effective passer who stepped in for Walter Payton Award winner Jeremy Moses and has kept the production going. He threw three picks against Northern Iowa and still needs time to polish up, but he also threw for 281 yards and a score in the loss. Baylor’s secondary got picked clean late against TCU, and without much of a pass rush to count on, it needs to be prepared to get bombed on throughout the game by an offense equipped to wing it around.

In two games, SFA hasn’t allowed a sack while gearing up the pass rush of its own with seven sacks and 22 tackles for loss. Against TCU, Baylor barely breathed hard on quarterback Casey Pachall and only came up with three plays behind the line.

Why Baylor Might Win: Baylor isn’t McMurry. From all indications, the players are well past the TCU win and are itching to show they’re ready to make even more big statements. The offense has way too many weapons and way too many playmakers for SFA to deal with. Northern Iowa wasn’t able to come up with much through the air, but it ran for 211 yard and four touchdowns with quarterback Tirrell Renne chopping in with 126 yards and two scores. Griffin hasn’t been a running quarterback lately, but if he has to, he can take off at any time and come up with yards in chunks.

What To Watch Out For: Griffin is getting the Heisman publicity and he’s the team’s signature star, but he’s getting a lot of help. Against TCU, senior Terrance Ganaway came up with a huge game ripping off 120 yards and a touchdown on 24 carries, showing he’s more than ready to become a workhorse back who takes the heat off RGIII. With speed and great moves in open space, he can hit the home run from anywhere on the field.

Also starring against the Horned Frogs was Kendall Wright, who came up with 12 catches for 189 yards and two scores and completed two passes for 55 yards and a score. He’s been one of the best receivers in the Big 12 over the last three seasons, he’s been lost in the shuffle of so many great conference targets. This might be the year he finally gets his just due, and that’ll only come with the ridiculous stats.

What Will Happen: Baylor will pick up where it left off. Griffin and company will come out roaring, putting the game away in the first 20 minutes. SFA will have its moments, and it’ll push the ball down the field in the second half, but it’ll also turn the ball over four times turning a rough outing into a blowout.

CFN Prediction: Baylor 48 … Stephen F. Austin 21
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