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In an open letter to the Baylor community regarding a recent Outside the Lines report detailing several cases of sexual assault, president Ken Starr said, "We have requested, and we expect, a frank and candid assessment that both addresses past practices and offers forward-looking recommendations [from an external investigation begun in the fall]."
The OTL report detailed multiple accusations of sexual assault levied against Baylor football players, particularly focusing on Tevin Elliott (played for Baylor from 2009-2012) and Sam Ukwuachu (2013-2015). Both players were found guilty on several charges of assault, with Elliott sentenced to 20 years in prison and Ukwuachu sentenced to 180 days in county jail and 10 years felony probation. Starr refused to address specific cases in his open letter, saying, "While Baylor can speak generally to policies, procedures and practices, we cannot speak to individual cases and remain within the confines of governing law." The governing law he's referring to is the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, though two of the victims in question have signed FERPA release forms, waiving that right. Starr failed to address those cases. Feb 8 - 7:57 PM

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On The Audible podcast, Baylor HC Art Briles said that his reaction to the Outside the Lines report detailing alleged sexual assaults by several former football players was one of "sadness and sorrow because it's something you never want to be associated with."

The OTL report focused on five women who reported to the police in regards to sexual assaults committed by Tevin Elliott, who played for Baylor from 2009 to 2012. Elliott's currently serving 20 years in prison after being found guilty on two counts of sexual assault. Said Briles, " As those things come up, you deal with them to the best that you're capable of doing. Then, you try to educate and make awareness to it and hopefully, it never happens again." He also indicated that questions about the report were not voiced by recruits during the 2016 cycle, though the fact that it broke on January 31--on a Friday, just days before National Signing Day--could certainly have something to do with that.
Source: FOX Sports
Feb 7 - 2:45 PM

When Big 12 athletic directors met in Irving, Texas, on Thursday, they made no progress on a potential championship game, conference expansion or a Big 12 network.

There appears to have been no progress on any front. This isn't a huge surprise, as conference commissioner Bob Bowlsby had previously indicated that it'll take some time to get the wheels rolling. There hasn't been substantive talk of expansion in some time, but a conference title game has already been approved by the NCAA and at least on that front, it's probably a matter of "when" rather than the matter of "if."
Feb 4 - 8:04 PM

An Outside the Lines report details several alleged incidents in which Baylor ignored claims of sexual assaults by football players.

To be clear, the NCAA is not currently investigating Baylor for these allegations. They're damning nonetheless. ESPN's report centers on Tevin Elliott and Sam Ukwuachu, both of whom were accused of sexual assaults when they played for the Bears (Elliott was with Baylor from 2009-2012 while Ukwuachu suited up from 2013-2015). OTL alleges that "school officials either failed to investigate, or adequately investigate, allegations of sexual violence. In many cases, officials did not provide support to those who reported assaults." Elliott was ultimately sentenced to 20 years in prison while Ukwuachu received 180 days in county jail and 10 years felony probation.
Jan 31 - 4:14 PM

Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby said that the conference "do[es]n’t have any imperative for getting larger."

"We haven’t really spent any time thinking about who the candidates are [for expansion]," Bowlsby said, "if there are any candidates. But there has been media speculation about it. It doesn’t take any genius to look around and see where there may be prospects." The Big 12 commish was also asked whether the likes of Oklahoma and West Virginia might leave the conference at some point. He didn't dismiss it outright, saying "there are always those possibilities." In other Big 12 news, the NCAA approved the conference's request for a championship game earlier this month, but Bowlsby indicated that the earliest realistic date for such a game would be in 2017 and that he "honestly do[es]n’t know where [the] ADs and presidents are on it right now."
Jan 26 - 10:33 PM

Baylor and Ole Miss are discussing a potential neutral site game for the 2020 season.

The two squads likely would have been ticketed for a Sugar Bowl showdown this past season had it not been for Baylor's season-closing loss to Texas. Oklahoma State ultimately drew the assignment over the Bears (they were subsequently throttled by the Rebs). It's been reported that a potential neutral site contest would take place in either Houston or Dallas.
Jan 21 - 8:11 PM

The NCAA approved the Big 12's request to stage a championship game as a 10-team league.

Huge day for the conference, which knocked down the NCAA's puzzling rule that leagues were required to have at least 12 teams split into two divisions in order to stage a title game. Now, 10-team conferences can have a title game so long as they play a round-robin schedule beforehand. The Sun Belt may follow suit. Big 12 executives are scheduled to meet Feb. 4, so they figure to discuss the championship game option then.
Jan 13 - 7:45 PM

Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby indicated that he does not want the conference to expand by two teams or play two divisions.

Said Bowlsby, "Theoretically, we could go to fewer games. We have a nine-game requirement in our contracts with Fox and ESPN, but theoretically, we could renegotiate those and go to an eight-game schedule [in conference] that might give us more flexibility [for round-robin play]." This is entering the news with renewed talk of a possible Big 12 conference championship game, which would help to alleviate the awkward situation that occurred in 2014, when Baylor and TCU tied atop the conference. The Big 12 commish went on to say, "We just need to see all the pieces of the puzzle and then thoughtfully go through what it is we want it to look like once we know the rules." Nothing's imminent here, but expect talk of expansion and such to continue throughout the offseason.
Source: CBS Sports
Jan 11 - 11:24 PM

Big 12 schools are now required to schedule at least one non-conference game against a Power 5 team or Notre Dame.

The Big 12 also announced that members can play no more than one game against an FCS opponent each season. "Schedule strength is a key component in [College Football Playoff] selection committee deliberations," Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby said in a statement. "This move will strengthen the résumés for all Big 12 teams. Coupled with the nine-game full round-robin conference schedule our teams play, it will not only benefit the teams at the top of our standings each season, but will impact the overall strength of the conference." Kansas and Baylor are the only Big 12 teams without a Power 5 nonconference opponent scheduled in 2016. The rule changes won't affect previously scheduled games, so those slates won't necessarily be amended.
Tue, Dec 8, 2015 03:31:00 PM

Prior to their contests against Kansas State and Oklahoma, Baylor had not been held to under 35 points in consecutive games since 2011.

Baylor was actually held under 35 points scored in three consecutive games back in 2011. Since then, it's just not something that's happened. That is, until the Bears' last two contests. On November 5, they beat Kansas State 31-24 and on Saturday, they fell to Oklahoma 44-34. These two games correspond with freshman Jarrett Stidham's first two starts of the season following a neck injury to Seth Russell. They'll try to surpass 35 against Oklahoma State on Saturday.
Mon, Nov 16, 2015 08:28:00 PM

Baylor HC Art Briles said that the current Baylor squad is the best he's coached in his eight years at the helm.

"It's the best team we've had in my eight years here, and I don't think it's even close," said Briles. He was quick to credit the improvement of the defense for his sunny outlook, noting that Baylor's "finally got guys on [the defensive] side of the ball who are dynamic. We've got some playmakers over there." And of course, there's the offense. The Bears lead the FBS nation in one-minute touchdown drives with 11. They also pace the field in terms of two-minute touchdown drives, as they've recorded 23 of those with gunslinger Seth Russell leading the charge in 2015. A flimsy Kansas defense awaits on Saturday as Baylor drives toward a possible postseason berth.
Fri, Oct 9, 2015 08:32:00 PM

ESPN reports that the over/under for Saturday's Texas Tech-Baylor game has reached a record 90.5 at Station Casino's sportsbooks.

The record-breaking over/under number is entirely justified. The Bears and Red Raiders have combined to score at least 94 points in their past three meetings. Baylor leads the FBS with 379.7 rushing yards per game, ranks seventh in passing at 387.3 and has a Division I-leading scoring average of 64.0. Texas Tech, meanwhile, averages 53.8 points per game. This game could very well break 100.
Source: ESPN
Thu, Oct 1, 2015 05:37:00 PM

Baylor has suspended OC Kendal Briles and WR coach Tate Wallis for Saturday's game against Lamar due to an NCAA violation.

Neither Briles nor Wallis will even be allowed to attend Saturday's contest with Lamar. A source told Sports Illustrated that the suspension stems from unauthorized off-campus contact with recruits over the spring. Kendal Briles is the son of HC Art Briles.
Fri, Sep 11, 2015 08:02:00 PM

Baylor athletic director Ian McCaw said the school is seeking an NCAA waiver that would allow it to play a nonconference game in Australia next season.

"We’re working on that process right now, and I think we’ll know one way or the other by the middle of August," McCaw said. The opponent is almost assuredly California (McCaw only confirmed Baylor would play a Power 5 team), a matchup that would light up scoreboards Down Under in the '16 opener. "So you’ve got television, travel, possible missed class time and a lot of different issues to work through," McCaw said. Because of previous long-standing commitments, Baylor's non-conference schedule is rather full for the next few years. Outside of buying out opponents, this is the school's best chance to beef up its criticized non-conference slate. "[HC Art Briles] was very excited about it from a recruiting standpoint, a unique cultural experience for our student-athletes and certainly a brand-builder," McCaw said.
Tue, Jul 21, 2015 09:12:00 PM

Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby remains against expansion and a conference title game.

Bowlsby told reporters on Monday that he thinks most Big 12 presidents and athletic directors prefer the current setup of the league and said there's no "critical mass" for expanding past 10 schools. Decisions on expansion are up to the league's presidents. Kansas State coach Bill Snyder believes the conference should expand. "I have always favored the way it was at one time," Snyder said. "I favor a 12-team conference, I favor two divisions, and I favor a championship game." Bowlsby is seeking an exemption to allow him to throw a championship game despite having only 10 teams. "Whether we end up with a championship game down the road or not, we aren't going to have one this year," Bowlsby said. "We think that full round-robin is the right way to determine it."
Tue, Jul 21, 2015 12:33:00 AM