Players to watch vs. Baylor

AddThis

Baylor wide receiver KD Cannon (9) fends off the tackle of Rice cornerback J.T. Blasingame in the second half of an NCAA college football game, Friday, Sept. 16, 2016, in Houston.
Photo Credit: AP Photo/ Eric Christian Smith
  • Seth Russell
  • Quarterback #17
  •  
  • The senior quarterback was sidelined with a neck injury that required surgery to end a promising 2015 season. 
  •  
  • Russell has yet to lose a game as a starter for Baylor, and is 13-0 in the past two seasons including five 50-point performances in seven games last year. Baylor’s offense is not scoring to the same degree this season but Russell still looks steady as the Bears’ quarterback. He has thrown for 1,470 yards and 16 touchdowns and compiled 302 rushing yards along the way. His statistically best game was against Baylor’s highest quality opponent: Oklahoma State. 
  •  
  • Although Russell has taken snaps in each of his four seasons, Saturday will mark the first time the senior has taken the field against the Longhorns.
  •  
  • K.D. Cannon
  • Wide receiver #9
  •  
  • Cannon has made a living shooting down the field, burning the secondary and hauling in the pigskin. It’s a formula Baylor’s offense has embraced often. The junior averages 17 yards per catch in his Baylor career, and has found the end zone on five occasions in 2016. Against Rice, Cannon breezed by the Owls for a season-high 213 yards and two touchdowns. 
  •  
  • The Longhorns have struggled with prominent receivers this season. California’s Chad Hansen and Oklahoma’s Dede Westbrook both recorded over 190 receiving yards in career days against the Texas defense. If the Russell-Cannon connection comes out firing, it could be a long day for the Longhorn secondary, which averages the fourth most yards per pass defensively this season.
  •  
  • Ryan Reid
  • Cornerback #9
  •  
  • In Baylor’s most recent win, a 49-7 obliteration of Kansas, Reid was the best defensive player on the field. The fifth-year senior cornerback from Dallas played the role of a ball-hawk, picking off two passes and gaining 116 yards off of the turnovers. 
  •  
  • On one interception, Reid flew in at the last minute, snatched the ball and took it to the house, untouched. Currently, the agile corner, who runs a 4.48 time in the 40-yard dash, is fifth in the nation in interception return yards. The recent winner of Big 12 Player of the Week will face Texas’ versatile receiving corps that features eight players with at least 10 catches and 100 yards on the season.
  •  
  • Orion Stewart
  • Strong safety #28
  •  
  • Stewart is familiar with the Texas offense. In his previous three games against the Longhorns, Stewart earned 20 tackles and two interceptions. 
  • The senior leads a veteran secondary that ranks sixth in the nation, only yielding 160.8 passing yards per games. Stewart has been a crucial part of the Bears’ undefeated start to 2016, making 28 tackles, four interceptions and one touchdown in only six games this season. 

Like Russell, Stewart stepped up against a strong Oklahoma State team, accruing a season-high 11 tackles and an interception in the 35-24 win.