College Football

Fiesta Bowl 2014: Baylor Won't Overlook UCF Defense

Baylor junior quarterback Bryce Petty during media day at the Camelback Inn Resort on Dec. 30.
Baylor junior quarterback Bryce Petty during media day at the Camelback Inn Resort on Dec. 30.Photo Credit: Josh Sachnoff
Josh SachnoffContributor IIIDecember 31, 2013

Scottsdale, AZ — No. 6 Baylor (11-1) will face off in the desert with underrated No. 15 UCF (11-1) in the  Fiesta Bowl on Jan. 1.

Both will play in their first BCS bowl game in school history. Baylor won 11 games for the first time and clinched its first outright conference title since 1980 when it was a part of the Southwest Conference. UCF, on the other hand, won 11 games and its second conference title in four years.

Baylor has the best offense in the nation and is averaging an astounding 53.3 points and 624.5 total yards per game. It doesn’t necessarily mean the Bears will be overconfident when they take the field on Wednesday night, though.

“They bring a lot to the table. They’re very talented, very disciplined,” starting Baylor quarterback Bryce Petty said about the UCF defense. “Whenever you have that, it makes it tough.”

Head Coach Art Briles went on to say, “They do a great job schematically defensively. They don’t get themselves out of position with alignment.”

UCF has held its opponents to 19.6 points per game (12th in the nation) and 116.5 rushing yards per game (13th in the nation) this season. 

Explosive redshirt junior running back Lache Seastrunk will have his work cut out for him, as he will look to maneuver his way through a stingy Knight rush defense. Seastrunk mentioned, “You got to be poised, focused and confident.” 

UCF has all-conference playmakers in quarterback Blake Bortles and running back Storm Johnson on the offensive side, but it will be critical for the defense to step up and keep Baylor off the scoreboard. 

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