In the Big 12 conference, coaching staffs are pretty ruthless about game planning to personnel. The nature of a spread league is such that if teams can find a weak spot on your depth chart, they can expose it in high stakes situations. There were a number of matchups in this game that needed to be game planned by either side to avoid problems and then a few matchups that offered opportunities.
The Bears are 9-1, assuming the break-out dark horse role that I thought Iowa State would fulfill this year. I thought my preseason 8-4 regular season prediction was aggressive and a sizable bet on Rhule and Brewer, but it turns out I undersold them. Matt Rhule has done a terrific job in Waco in his three years, progressing Baylor from 1-11 to 7-6 to their current 9-1. Baylor nailed their football hire and his three year progression at a school that had effectively been hit with tactical nukes on the recruiting trail and in the transfer portal is a natural contrast to Tom Herman's own three year tenure. Rhule has done more with less under much more trying circumstances.
The 0-7 Bears have had a dubious start under new head coach Matt Rhule. Early season non-conference losses to Liberty, UTSA and Duke suggested Bear football the likes of which we hadn't seen since Kevin Steele and Dirty Dave Roberts, but the Bears have slowly turned the corner from laughing stock to scrappers in the space of a few weeks.