Saturday marked the fourth time the Baylor Bears have put more than 68 points on the board this season. They've started to make a name for themselves that falls synonymous with the Oregon Ducks, but Head Coach Art Briles and his team know they're still only beginning to define themselves. Critics agree, saying, even after four straight games of scoring more than nine touchdowns-worth of points, that the Bears still have work to do in proving themselves as a true offensive outfit. The only four games the Bears have had have been at home, and against mediocre opponents, which is why Briles understands their doubts. He says it's like dating:
"I still think our identity hasn't been written. I think it's too early. We've played four games since August 31st and it's October 5th. You know, you're not going to date somebody three times and say 'will you marry me?'. So I think we still gotta see where we're at, before we judge ourselves," Briles said after Saturday's win.
Quarterback Bryce Petty understands, but doesn't necessarily agree. He says he feels like he and his team continue to prove themselves week after week, touchdown after touchdown, but that if people are going to take their time to buy in, that's their call. Petty says those who continue to speculate are simply fueling the Bears' fire, and says he willingly accepts the chip they're placing on the Bears' shoulders and the motivation it gives them to play even harder.
"I always feel Baylor's a 'but' team, and I say that because people say 'Baylor's good, but', 'Baylor scores points, but', 'Baylor beat this team, but', and, ya know, that's good because it puts a chip on our shoulder, and makes us come out and work," Petty said.
Briles says it comes with the territory of an emerging program, and a talented emerging program. People are going to take their time to get to know you and your team. Briles is getting to know his Bears right along with the rest of the country, and as parts of their persona continue to develop, he knows one characteristic that has already proven itself to be true.
"I think we have an explosive nature to us, from an offensive standpoint, and defensively I think we have a lot of guys that play with a lot of intensity and toughness," Briles concluded. "I think we're a tough football team."
The Bears' next challenge is their first on the road, as they head to Kansas State October 12th. With them they will take the 282 total points and 2938 yards of total offense they've racked up so far this season, and the will to win the same way they have in their first four contests of 2013.