The unbeaten Baylor Red Raiders had an 8 p.m. kickoff against Father Ryan at Heywood Stadium.
The Red Raiders offense was fashionably late.
"We know if the offense stubs their toe a little bit, we have to pick it up," Baylor senior linebacker Colton Jumper said after the Red Raiders' defensively dominating 24-6 win Friday night. "They would do the same for us. That's the trust we have on this team.
"They came back really well after a tough start."
Baylor ran six offensive plays and had minus-16 yards in the first quarter. Jumper and the Raiders defense limited the Irish to two Luke Strebel field goals. From there, the Irish were running to stand still, and Jumper and Co. pounced on every chance against the dive-based, double-wing rushing attack.
"For me, playing your assignment against an offense like this is easier," said Jumper, who had two of Baylor's 10 tackles for loss and caused one of Father Ryan's two lost fumbles.
In a 6-0 hole after a backpedaling first quarter, junior quarterback Michael O'Connor jumpstarted the offense. O'Connor rushed for 24 yards and threw for 28 on an 11-play, 80-yard touchdown drive that gave Baylor the lead for good midway through the second quarter.
In the much-debated Baylor quarterback dance between O'Connor and sophomore Nick Tiano continued Friday. O'Connor finished with the better numbers -- he was 5-for-7 for 54 yards and rushed six times for 38 yards compared to Tiano's 1-for-6 for 8 yards passing and a 1-yard touchdown run.
In fact, Baylor's longest play was a 28-yard on a fake punt by Jumper that set up Houston Clements' 5-yard touchdown that capped the scoring.
Stats aside, Baylor coach Phillip Massey was interested in one number -- his team is 3-0 -- and saw the good and the bad from each quarterback. Of course, with his defense playing that well -- Baylor alllowed 195 total yards and 65 of those came on Father Ryan's cosmetic final drive against reserves -- there's no hurry to decide who is the starter
"They both competed very well and they provide different things," Massey said. "And when our defense is playing that well ..."
Massey didn't need to finish his sentence; the Baylor defense punctuated Friday night for him.
Jay was named the Sports Editor of the Times Free Press in 2003 and started with the newspaper in May 2002 as the Deputy Sports Editor. He was born and raised in Smyrna, Ga., and graduated from Auburn University before starting his newspaper career in 1997 with the Newnan (Ga.) Times Herald. Stops in Clayton and Henry counties in Georgia and two years as the Sports Editor of the Marietta (Ga.) Daily Journal preceded Jay’s ...