Sept. 25, 2011
Rice found out what TCU learned on the first weekend of the 2011 season, the hype surrounding Baylor's Robert Griffin III might not come close to reflecting the senior signal caller's abilities.
Griffin threw for five scores and rushed for a sixth to lead the Bears to a 56-31 win over the Owls at Floyd Casey Stadium on Saturday night in front of 40,088 and a FoxSports Southwest television audience.
After Rice forced a punt on Baylor's initial possession of the game, Grifffin lead the Bears to scores on their next five series of the first half, including a pair of scores just 41 seconds apart to extend the lead to 21-0.
After Baylor extended the lead to 28-0 at the start of the second stanza, Rice answered with an 80-yard touchdown march of their own, capped by a two-yard run by Jeremy Eddington that was set up by a 42-yard completion from Taylor McHargue to Randy Kitchens.
McHargue threw for 260 yards and three scores on the night, completing a career-best 23-38 passes. He added 44 on the ground to top 300 yards total offense for the first time in his career and sparked the Owls to 10 consecutive points to end the first half, closing the gap to 35-17 at intermission.
The Owls defense stymied the Bears on their first possession in the second half, taking over on downs at the Baylor 46, but any hopes at closing the gap on the scoreboard any closer were dashed when Ahmad Dixon took advantage of a deflected McHargue pass and returned it 55-yards for a score.
Griffin added one more score through the air and completed the Baylor scoring with a 4-yard run near the end of the quarter.
McHargue added a pair of second-half TD passes, first connecting with Andre Gautreaux in the end zone from 19-yards out and later hitting Vance McDonald on a 24-yard score. Gautreaux's reception was his first career catch in college.
McDonald led the Owls with six receptions for 52 yards and a pair of scores. Turner Petersen led the Owls on the ground with 51 yards rushing.
The Owls will open conference play next Saturday when they travel to Hattiesburg, Mississippi to take on Southern Miss at 6:30 p.m.