Stats & Info: Baylor

Seven signees that will impact 2013 season

February, 8, 2013
2/08/13
8:42
AM ET

Zuma Press/Icon SMNotre Dame's Greg Bryant (with ball) is a 2013 signee than can make an immediate impact this fall.
Signing day has come and gone and with much of the ESPN 300 having made their college decisions, we look at seven signees from the 2013 class that can make an immediate impact next fall:

RB Greg Bryant, Notre Dame
Cierre Wood and Theo Riddick are gone, leaving a vacancy in the backfield and over 300 carries to go around. Bryant is the first top-10 running back the Irish have signed since James Aldridge in 2006. Notre Dame posted a respectable 4.9 yards per carry as a team last season and will return three starters on the offensive line. With returning dual-threat quarterback Everett Golson, Bryant should have plenty of room to work.

QB Christian Hackenberg, Penn State
Matt McGloin threw for eight touchdowns and 5 interceptions in 2011. He had the same amount of picks last season, but led the Big Ten in both yards (3,271) and touchdowns (24) through the air. The difference? Coach Bill O’Brien, who tailored his offense to McGloin’s skills. Hackenberg's No. 1 ranking indicates his physical tools and with O’Brien’s help, will likely be put in a position to succeed.

ILB Reuben Foster, Alabama
Is Alabama the new hotbed for talented linebackers? Nick Saban is certainly making a case for it. Under Saban, the Tide’s marquee linebackers have all been in the running for the Butkus Award (nation’s top linebacker). With Nico Johnson heading for the draft, Foster could very well step in next to C.J. Mosley to solidify the front seven on one of the most dominant defensive units in the FBS.

WR Robbie Rhodes, Baylor
Terrance Williams and Lanear Sampson are leaving Waco, but the Bears will still be running their wide-open offensive scheme and need playmakers on the outside. Losing Williams is huge, as no player in FBS had more receiving yards than he did last season. But Rhodes is the highest-rated player the Bears have signed since the ESPN 150 began in 2006, and he is the first top-10 receiver they have signed as well.

RB Derrick Green, Michigan
Fitz Toussaint’s status for 2013 is unknown following ankle surgery and by the end of last season, Denard Robinson was getting a majority of the carries at running back with Devin Gardner at quarterback. Green is the highest-ranked running back prospect to head to Ann Arbor in the history of the ESPN 150, and without Robinson or a healthy Toussaint, the Wolverines backfield should have plenty of carries up for grabs.

ATH Greg Taboada & TE Eric Cotton Jr., Stanford
There is not a school in the country which has relied on its tight ends more than Stanford in recent seasons. Like Coby Fleener before them, Zach Ertz and Levine Toilolo are headed for the NFL draft and the Cardinal are looking for help at a vital position in their offense. The last top-20 tight end that signed with Stanford was Davis Dudchock in 2010, but he has yet to catch a pass in his collegiate career. Cotton is a pure tight end, while Taboada projects at either tight end or as a pass rusher - which is another position the Cardinal value, as the FBS leader in sacks last season.
Stats & Info insights into this morning's top sports stories


1. BAYLOR WOMEN MAKE IT A PERFECT 40: Baylor wins the NCAA Women’s Basketball Championship with a 80-61 win over Notre Dame. Brittney Griner (26 Pts, 13 Reb, 5 Blk) was named Most Outstanding Player. The Lady Bears become the 1st men’s or women’s basketball team to reach 40 wins in a season.

2. LeBRON GOES FOR 40: The Miami Heat clinch their 4th straight playoff appearance with a 99-93 win over the Philadelphia 76ers. LeBron James scores a season-high 41 points. FROM ELIAS: The only other NBA player this season to record more than 40 points in a game in which his team failed to score 100 points is Kobe Bryant, who did that three times in a five-day span in January.

3. KNICKS FALL APART LATE: The Indiana Pacers defeat the New York Knicks, 112-104. FROM ELIAS: That is the largest margin of victory for any NBA team in a game it was losing by 15-or-more points heading into the fourth quarter since October 30, 2010, when the Bulls rallied to beat the Pistons in Chicago, 101-91.

4. RANGERS CLINCH TOP SEED: The New York Rangers clinch the top seed in the Eastern Conference with a 5-3 win over the Philadelphia Flyers. It marks the first time that the Rangers secured the East’s best record since the 1993-94 season. That’s the last time the Blueshirts won the Stanley Cup.

Sidney Crosby
Crosby
5. CROSBY SCORING LATELY: Sidney Crosby scores two goals, with an assist in the Pittsburgh Penguins’ 5-3 win over the Boston Bruins. FROM ELIAS: Crosby has scored 22 points in 12 games (5 goals, 17 assists) since March 15, when he returned to action. That makes him the NHL scoring leader since that date, one point ahead of teammate Evgeni Malkin.

ESPN Stats & InformationBaylor guard Brady Heslip made nine 3-pointers en route to 27 points in leading the Bears to an 80-63 win over Colorado.

In the Baylor Bears’ Big 12 semifinals victory over Kansas on March 9, Brady Heslip made four of seven 3-pointers to help put his team over the top.

That was just a prelude to Saturday’s performance, when Heslip exploded for nine 3-pointers and helped push his Bears to the Sweet 16 for the second time in the last three seasons.

From the start of the Kansas game through Saturday's victory over Colorado, the sophomore is shooting a scorching 61 percent (22-for-36) from beyond arc.

All of Heslip's 27 points came via the 3-point shot, as he did not attempt a free throw and missed his only 2-point field-goal attempt.

Here’s a snapshot look at the other early-evening statistical highights in the Men’s Basketball Championship.

South Region
(1) Kentucky 87, (8) Iowa State 71

Kentucky scored its most points since scoring 87 against Loyola (Md.) on Dec. 22. The Wildcats join Ohio State as the two teams (so far) who have made the Sweet 16 in each of the last three seasons.

Kentucky shot 55 percent from the field, something it has done in both Men’s Basketball Championship games so far. The last time the Wildcats shot 55 percent or better twice in the same tournament was in 1998, when they won the national championship.

(4) Indiana 63, (12) VCU 61
The Hoosiers advanced to the Sweet 16 for the first time since 2002, when they lost in the National Championship game. Indiana is now 15-0 against non-conference teams this season.

Indiana had 22 turnovers, its second-most in a Men's Basketball Championship game in school history. The most for the Hoosiers was 23 in 2002 against Duke, a game that Indiana also won.

But the Hoosiers clamped down on the Rams in the final 12:19, forcing more turnovers (5) than they allowed points (4). VCU shot 2-for-15 from the field to close the game (all in half-court sets), 0-for-8 from 3-point range, and 0-for-2 on free throws.

VCU attempted 30 3-pointers (and made 9), its most in a game since 2006.

West Region
(3) Marquette 62, (6) Murray State 53

Marquette held Murray State to 31.3 percent shooting from the field. That's the lowest shooting percentage by a Marquette opponent in a Men's Basketball Championship game since Arkansas shot 31.2 percent to beat Marquette in the 2nd round of the 1995-96 tournament.

Those are the two lowest opponents’ field goal percentages by a Marquette opponent, covering all but its first tournament appearance in 1955 (for which the box score does not list team field goal percentages).

East Region
(4) Wisconsin 60, (5) Vanderbilt 57
It's the first time in school history that Wisconsin has made consecutive trips to the Sweet 16.

Vanderbilt shot only 26 percent from 3-point range, its fourth-worst shooting percentage from long-distance in a game this season and its second-worst shooting on 3-pointers in an NCAA tournament game.

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