3:05 PM ET, October 21, 2006
Floyd Casey Stadium, WACO, TX
WACO, Texas (AP) -- Shawn Bell noticed the Baylor fans who began to leave the stadium seemingly resigned to another disappointing homecoming loss after he threw an interception early in the fourth quarter.
"But we're going to believe," Bell said. "What a great finish. People will remember this one."
Instead of their ninth straight homecoming loss, those who stayed Saturday saw the Bears match the largest fourth-quarter comeback in team history for a 36-35 victory over Kansas.
Bell threw for a school-record 394 yards with three of his five touchdown passes coming in the final 9:22 when Baylor erased an 18-point deficit. The game-winner was a 10-yarder to Dominique Zeigler with 1:08 left.
"It solidifies the mentality you're trying to form as a habit," coach Guy Morriss said. "They didn't give up. They didn't give in. They found a way to win it. ... As long as we win, I'll take four more like that."
Baylor (4-4, 3-1 Big 12) has won three Big 12 games in the same season for the first time, and is .500 at its latest point in 10 years. Next up is another home game against No. 23 Texas A&M, which lost in Waco two years ago.
Bell finished 33-of-55, and the five TDs and his 18 this season are also school records. Zeigler caught the final pass in the left flat and got a tremendous block from fellow receiver Trent Shelton that allowed him to leap over another defender into the end zone.
"I'm littler than most guys, so I wasn't going to run him over to get into the end zone," said Zeigler, who caught seven passes for 122 yards. "I jumped over him because I wasn't going out of bounds."
The only other time the Bears trailed by 18 points in the fourth quarter and won was in 1936, when the Bears scored three touchdowns for a 21-18 win over Texas. The Longhorns fired their coach right after the game.
Kansas coach Mark Mangino still has a job, but the loss at Baylor came a week after the Jayhawks (3-5, 0-4) blew a 17-0 third-quarter lead in a 42-32 loss at Oklahoma State. Less than two weeks ago, the NCAA extended the school's self-imposed probation for violations under Mangino.
Jon Cornish had a career-high 196 yards rushing, 140 by halftime when Kansas led 35-17 after his two TD runs.
Cornish had a 24-yard run on the first play of the second half, and receiver Marcus Herford then overthrew a wide-open receiver in the end zone on a trick play before Scott Webb was wide right on a 42-yard field goal attempt on that same drive.
Those missed chances proved costly.
"If I had an explanation, we would have corrected it a while back," Mangino said. "I'm not a believer in luck. You work at what you do and you find a way to get better and you find a way to win."
That's what Baylor did.
Bell hit Shelton (six catches, 104 yards, two TDs) for a 42-yard TD to start Baylor's comeback. After Kansas punted, Zeigler caught a 60-yard pass to set up Paul Mosley's 4-yard TD catch on the next play that got the Bears within 35-30 with 4:48 left.
With Adam Barmann at quarterback after Kerry Meier was apparently hurt on the final play of the third quarter, Kansas was unable to pick up a first down and punted. The Bears took over at their 42 with 2:43 left.
On the play before the game-winning TD, Zeigler made an incredible stretching catch along the sideline, managing to drag his foot inbounds for a 13-yard gain on third-and-10. The play was reviewed and upheld.
Meier never returned after he took a hard shot on the sideline at the end of an 8-yard run on the final play of the third quarter. Mangino refused to say what was wrong, but Meier missed three games earlier this season because of a shoulder injury.
Meier was 6-of-11 for 62 yards and a TD, and ran for 62 yards and a score. Without Meier in the game, the option running game didn't work and Kansas was ineffective offensively.
"It definitely changed the game plan. You can do certain things and you can't," Kansas center David Ochoa said. "It's not about offense or defense on the team. We're just trying to outscore the other team's offense and we didn't do that."
Kansas has lost all three of its Big 12 trips to Waco, the others in 1998 and 2002 that were the bookends to Baylor's 29-game conference losing streak. The Jayhawks are 1-17 in conference road games in Mangino's five seasons.
Team Stat Comparison
|3rd Down Conversions||5-13||8-14|
|4th Down Conversions||0-1||0-0|
|TD||11:13||BRANDON WHITAKER 5 YD PASS FROM SHAWN BELL (RYAN HAVENS KICK)|
Drive info: 11 plays, 80 yards.
|TD||7:38||KERRY MEIER 12 YD RUN (SCOTT WEBB KICK)|
Drive info: 8 plays, 78 yards.
|TD||6:45||ARIST WRIGHT 28 YD INTERCEPTION RETURN (SCOTT WEBB KICK)||14||7|
|FG||14:50||RYAN HAVENS 42 YD FG|
Drive info: 13 plays, 56 yards.
|TD||11:23||TRENT SHELTON 4 YD PASS FROM SHAWN BELL (RYAN HAVENS KICK)|
Drive info: 6 plays, 58 yards.
|TD||7:34||DEXTON FIELDS 13 YD PASS FROM KERRY MEIER (SCOTT WEBB KICK)|
Drive info: 8 plays, 69 yards.
|TD||3:27||JON CORNISH 15 YD RUN (SCOTT WEBB KICK)|
Drive info: 6 plays, 53 yards.
|TD||0:23||JON CORNISH 1 YD RUN (SCOTT WEBB KICK)|
Drive info: 7 plays, 28 yards.
|TD||9:22||TRENT SHELTON 42 YD PASS FROM SHAWN BELL (RYAN HAVENS KICK)|
Drive info: 5 plays, 80 yards.
|TD||4:42||PAUL MOSLEY 4 YD PASS FROM SHAWN BELL (FAILED 2PT PASS)|
Drive info: 4 plays, 84 yards.
|TD||1:08||DOMINIQUE ZEIGLER 10 YD PASS FROM SHAWN BELL (FAILED 2PT PASS)|
Drive info: 9 plays, 58 yards.