Baylor entered the day with a 9-2 record, and were the 12th-ranked team in the country. Their opponent: the 4-7 University of Texas, who were three-touchdown underdogs. The Longhorns didn’t just manage to cover, but they actually pulled out the victory, 23-17, dealing Baylor a significant blow with regards to their eventual bowl game placement.
Baylor entered the day starting their third-string quarterback, Charlie Johnson, who sustained an injury after completing three of his first four pass attempts. The Bears’ fourth-string quarterback, Lynx Hawthorne, had completed 26 passes for 274 yards in his three-year career — all of them as a wide receiver. Putting Hawthorne in at quarterback was nothing if not an adventure: he ended the day having completed 10 of 22 passes for just 64 total yards, throwing two interceptions along the way. Hawthorne ended up being more productive with his legs, running 10 times for 66 yards, including a touchdown run. The Bears ended the game with 84 passing yards and 395 rushing yards.
Hawthorne was not the only member of Baylor’s team playing out of position: the 410-pound offensive lineman Laquan McGowan, who has three touchdown catches on three career receptions, also earned his first career rush, which went for two yards.
As a result of the loss, Oklahoma State will take Baylor’s place in the Sugar Bowl on New Year’s Day, most likely against Ole Miss.