Art Briles and Robert Griffin return for their second season in Waco, and they’ve also added Coppell stud Tyler DeLoach to the roster this year. Bruce Feldman had a nice article in ESPN the Magazine about the Baylor resurgence, and I can't figure out how to link to it. Defensive stalwarts Pawelek and Lake return on the defensive side for another year of Bear excellence. I see the Bears finishing 7-5 this year for their first winning record since 1995 and first trip to a bowl game since 1994. The Bears will win their four non-conference games, then go 1-3 in their next four against OU, Iowa State, Boone State and the Bugeaters. The Bears will then beat Mizzou, scare Texas before falling, beat the Aggies in College Station (this first Bear W in College Station since 1984) and then lose to the Dust Pirates at Cowboy Stadium to end the regular season. The big news at the season finale will be either a) Bear fans in shock that parking at Cowboys Stadium costs more than a ticket at Floyd Casey, and b) they made a home game an away game by allowing all the DFW based Tech alumni easy access to a Red Raider game.
The problem for the Bears will be they will be participating in the Independence Bowl in Shreveport, where the Baylor fans will hit the casinos and hope not to be noticed by their Baptist brethren. It’ll look like Halloween in with all the people wearing Art Briles masks. The last time a group of people were so excited to be in Shreveport was 1999, when the Sooners went there in the first year of Stoops reign.