Can Dave Aranda Continue Matt Rhule’s Baylor Rebuild?
The 2019 Baylor Bears were a bit of a crazy story. The offensive line was inexperienced and allowed all kinds of pressure on quarterback Charlie Brewer who was running for his life most of the season. Despite the offensive troubles, the defense was on the other end of the experience spectrum. The experienced defense led the way to an 11 win season and a Big 12 title game. You can’t take away the wins or appearance in the title game but seven of their 11 wins were against teams that didn’t go to bowl games including a 21-13 win against lowly Rice.
The 2020 Baylor Bears head into the season with a new head coach, coordinators, and will have an inexperienced defense. The offensive line will be improved after taking it on the chin last season but the top rushers have moved on from last year. Charlie Brewer returns but hasn’t taken the next step after showing flashes of greatness early in his career. Tyquan Thorton was the breakout star of the Bears offense last season and should be even better this year.
Defensively, first-year head coach Dave Aranda knows what he’s doing. He has his work cut out for him this season though with 9 of 11 starters gone from last season’s defense. The two returning starters are leading tackler Terrel Bernard and defensive back Raliegh Texada who both were big pieces of last year's team.
Big 12 Media Preseason Poll
Projected Win Total
Best Offensive Returners
QB Charlie Brewer, OL Conner Galvin, RB John Lovett, WR Tyquan Thornton
Best Defensive Returners
LB Terrel Bernard, DB Raleigh Texada, DL Chidi Ogbonnaya
LB Dillon Doyle (Iowa), OL Jake Burton (UCLA), William Bradley-King (Arkansas State)
WR Josh Fleeks, QB Jacob Zeno, DB Kalon Barnes, WR Yusuf Terry