As long as Art Briles and Philip Montgomery are in town, Baylor will have one of the best offenses in college football. They are that innovative. The Bears will always score enough points to compete.
But will they prevent enough?
Granted, Phil Bennett is the one running the defense—not Briles. Still, the head coach has to step in and make a difference at some point.
Baylor has steadily gotten better on that side of the ball, but basic things such as sound tackling and elementary coverage still stand between it and national title contention. Last year's defense was pretty bad but still one of the best in recent school history.
In the words of Shehan Jeyarajah of The Dallas Morning News:
Perhaps the primary reason Baylor was finally able to break through and win the Big 12 in 2013 was the rise of its defense. Halfway through the season in 2013, the Bears were giving up over 540 yards per game and were on pace to be the worst defense of all time. Despite a resurgence late, Baylor finished bottom five in total defense and gave up over 500 yards a game.
That a defense averaging 500 yards allowed per game is viewed as a "breakthrough" says everything you need to know.
Briles needs to help inspire a full-season fix.