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Wednesday, Jan. 1 at 8:30 p.m. ET
Will Art Briles Still Be the Head Coach?
This is more of a storyline leading up to the game, but it's a big one nevertheless. Now that the Texas job is officially open, and now that Nick Saban is signing an extension with Alabama, all eyes will turn to Briles.
Briles recently inked a 10-year extension with Baylor, and the Dallas Morning News reported he will make over $4 million a year. Baylor is investing in him and the football program; that's all a coach can really ask for in an employer.
Is Texas technically a better job? Sure, it's one of the top jobs in the country. But consider that Briles was one loss away to Oklahoma State from playing in a BCS National Championship. Point being, he can win at Baylor. He doesn't need Texas for that.
Still, Texas should make a run at him. The next couple of weeks should be quite interesting.
The Return of Tevin Reese and the Vertical Passing Attack
Last week, Baylor wide receiver Tevin Reese tweeted "CLEARED!!!," indicating he is good to go for the Fiesta Bowl. Reese suffered a wrist injury against Oklahoma and was ruled out for the rest of the regular season.
Baylor's vertical passing game hasn't quite been the same since. The back injury to offensive lineman Spencer Drango has played a part as well, as did the opposing defenses Baylor played over the past month. Still, Reese's absence has been noticeable.
With Reese back, it will be interesting to see if Baylor's offense looks more like it did toward the beginning of the season.
Will Bryce Petty show he was a Heisman snub?
Florida State quarterback Jameis Winston was going to win the Heisman Trophy whether Baylor quarterback Bryce Petty went to New York as a finalist or not. That said, Petty has a legitimate gripe that he didn't make the final cut.
What better way to show voters they wrongfully ignored you than by throwing for 400 yards or accounting for five touchdowns on a national stage?
Will this be Lache Seastrunk's last game at Baylor?
There's a recurring theme developing here. Bowl games are oftentimes the curtain call for NFL-bound players. Per David Ubben of Fox Sports, Seastrunk has indicated before he wants to return to Waco for another year, but will he?
B/R's Matt Miller projects Seastrunk as a second-round talent. With the value of running backs going down in the NFL, it may behoove him to go now.