The K-State Wildcats lost in a hard fought game against the Baylor Bears at home. The Wildcats seemed to build momentum late in the game, and if it was not for mistakes, would have been in a better position to win the game. In terms of the best players, Baylor had a plethora of different players who could have taken this title, but it goes to the biggest deep threat the the Bears possess.
Offense: Baylor senior wide receiver Tevin Reese
Reese was the top performer in a receiving corp loaded in talent. With five receptions, Reese racked up 184 yards.
Two of his receptions were what put him ahead of the pack. With a 93-yard touchdown in the second quarter, Reese had the second longest touchdown reception in program history. Then, in the fourth, Reese reeled in a 54 yard touchdown to bring his total to two.
The fourth quarter touchdown broke a three-drive Wildcat scoring streak, which put them ahead for the remainder of the game and killed the Wildcat’s momentum.
This game was the best performance that Reese has had to date, with a career high in receiving. He also extended his touchdown streak to seven games.
Reese leads the nation in career touchdown receptions over 40 yards, with 20 career long-distance scores. When you match this with the fact that Reese has only scored 22 career touchdowns, his deep-threat potential is awe-inspiring.
Bryce Petty has a dangerous weapon in Reese, who might end up being a game changer in any close games that Baylor might encounter.
Defense: K-State junior defensive end Ryan Mueller
Mueller registered seven tackles on the night, including both of the Wildcats’ sacks.
Mueller’s impact could be seen in the third quarter, when he made an incredible diving strip of Baylor quarterback Bryce Petty to take possession back for the Wildcats.
“The corners gave me enough time to get to the quarterback,” Mueller said. “It was right in front of me, and I just took it.”
This play led to the Wildcats taking a 25-21 lead, and gave the Wildcats an impressive amount of momentum.
“I said this last week, nobody plays or practices harder than Ryan Mueller” coach Bill Snyder said. “[Mueller] played very, very well in all aspects of the game today.”
The forced fumble was Mueller’s first in his career, and it is only his fourth career
fumble recovery. He raised his career-high, and team leading, season total to 4 sacks and his career total to 7.5.
Mueller leads the team in sacks, with the next closest Wildcats being Blake Slaughter and Travis Britz, who both have two sacks on the season. Mueller also leads the team with 7.5 tackles for loss, with Britz with the second-most with 4.5.
Mueller is the best pass rusher on the Wildcat defense, and if he keeps his pace, might go down as one of the best in program history.
Honorable Mention: Baylor junior quarterback Bryce Petty
Petty passed for 342 yards and three touchdowns in one of his most lackluster performances of the season, which is saying something.
In all of his five starts he has passed for over 300 yards and two touchdowns, which leads many to make comparisons between himself and Robert Griffin III, which is a good problem to have.
Petty took command of his offense, exposing gaps and mistakes that the Wildcat defense made plenty of throughout the game.
“In the first half of the ballgame, we had four mistakes,” said Snyder. “The late hit out of bounds which showed a lack of discipline and then we let somebody just run by [them] four three different times.”
Three times were enough for Petty, who seemed like he knew where the holes were going to be, and when the mistakes were going to happen, before they happened. The poise that Petty showed on the go-ahead drive capitalized his night, adding a close fought victory to the many routs he has orchestrated this year.
If he continues at the pace he is going, he might surpass any record that any Baylor quarterback has put up.