Bennett will remain Baylor's defensive coordinator in the face of historically bad numbers.
I asked Briles on the Big 12 media conference call on Monday morning if he has full faith in Bennett to coach his defense and make the necessary improvements.
“Yes. I certainly do,” Briles said.
The Bears rank last in the FBS level in total defense, allowing 553.17 yards per game. They are giving up an average of 6.51 yards per play on defense. Generally, those are the types of numbers that don’t help your football team win football games on the football field.
Of the many problems this defense has had start with 3rd downs – the Bears defense is allowing opposing offenses to convert at a 63 percent rate.
"We’re certainly depleted a little bit depth wise, no doubt. That’s a concern," Briles said. "What we have to do is play better. We have to get off the field on third downs, that is the most critical factor for us. That has been a thorn for us this season."
The Bears are 3-3, and have lost three straight games where they have allowed 63, 49 and 50 points, respectively.
Public Enemy No. 1 in this Bear bomb is Bennett, who is in his second season in Waco.
Bennett is like any other coach or coordinator – he can do a fine job if he has players. Baylor doesn’t have enough defensive talent.
Bennett has been a defensive coordinator since 1984 when he was with Iowa State. Below are each of Bennett’s season as a defensive coordinator, the team’s national defensive ranking, and their overall record.
Iowa State defensive coordinator
1984: 17th out of 110 (2-7-2)
1985: NCAA does not have this ranking outside of the top 20 (5-6)
1986: NCAA does not have this ranking outside of the top 20 (6-5)
Purdue defensive coordinator
1987: NCAA does not have this ranking outside of the top 20 (3-7-1)
1988: NCAA does not have this ranking outside of the top 20 (4-7)
1989: 67th out of 106 (3-8)
1990: 71st out of 106 (2-9)
LSU defensive coordinator
1994: 11th out of 107 (4-7)
Texas A&M defensive coordinator
1995: 3rd out of 108 (9-3)
1996: 33rd out of 111 (6-6)
TCU defensive coordinator
1997: 49th out of 112 (1-10)
Kansas State defensive coordinator
1999: 2nd out of 114 (10-1)
2000: 4th out of 114 (10-3)
2001: 3rd out of 115 (6-5)
Baylor defensive coordinator
2011: 116th out of 120 (10-3)
2012: 120th out of 120 (3-3)
Give Bennett players and the Baylor defense will be fine. Alas, this does not mean he won't be fired in the offseason.
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