West Virginia quarterback Geno Smith passed for a Big 12 record eight touchdowns and the Mountaineers needed every one of them in their Big 12 debut in Morgantown. No. 9 West Virginia outlasted No. 25 Baylor in an offensive shootout, 70-63 in the first Big 12 game in program history for West Virginia.
Smith passed for 656 yards and ended his day completing 45 of 51 pass attempts against Baylor’s non-existent defense. West Virginia receiver Steadman Bailey led the Mountaineers with 303 receiving yards and led all players with five receiving touchdowns. Tavon Austin accounted for 215 receiving yards for the home team and J.D. Woods also eclipsed the century mark with 114 receiving yards. His one-handed grab late in the game helped West Virginia move in to position where they could kill the rest of the clock by taking a knee. Baylor’s Terrance Williams led all players with 314 receiving yards.
West Virginia and Baylor traded scores back and forth throughout the first half, with the game tied at 35-35 at the half.
“It did feel like one of those classic Texas shootouts,” said Smith after the game. “That’s kind of what the Big 12 is about.”
West Virginia jumped out to a 21-point lead in the third quarter by scoring the first three touchdowns of the third quarter before Baylor could find an answer. A 45-yard pass from Smith to Austin early in the third quarter was followed by an encore from 52 yards between the two just minutes later.
The record books at Baylor will also have to be updated after Saturday’s contest. Quarterback Nick Florence set a new school record for passing yards in a game with 581 yards, 102 yards more than last year’s Heisman Trophy winning quarterback, Robert Griffin III, passed for in a home win against Oklahoma.
There were plenty of other records broken in this game. Among the records set in the game:
- The 19 touchdowns scored between West Virginia and Baylor tied an FBS record, previously set by Navy and North Texas in 2007 (a 74-62 Navy victory)
- Baylor’s 63 points tied the most points scored by a losing FBS team
- Geno Smith set new West Virginia records for most completions, most passing yards and most touchdown passes in a game.
- Bailey and Austin become the first FBS teammates with 200 or more receiving yards in a game since 2007
Kevin is a national college football writer for quadrust.com and the host of the No 2-Minute Warning podcast. Submit your mailbag questions via Tumblr. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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