The middle of the Big 12 is shaping up to be a tight race in 2013, and the team that manages to slip away from the rest of the average Joes may do so through the brilliant play of just one player. That team may very well be the Baylor Bears, and that player could be Lache Seastrunk.
Seastrunk came on strong for the Bears late in the 2012 season, racking up over 800 yards in the final six games of the year. He rushed for over 135 yards in the last four of those six, all of which were wins for Baylor, and one of which was the upset win over the then BCS No. 1 ranked Kansas State Wildcats. Prior to that last stretch of the season, Seastrunk rarely touched the ball for the Bears. Had he seen more playing time in 2012 then those single possession losses to both the West Virginia Mountaineers and the Texas Longhorns could have been wins and Baylor could have easily ended up 9-3.
The past is the past though, and now Baylor has to focus on improving in their 2013 season with yet another new QB at the helm. Reports out of Waco suggest that junior Bryce Petty is coming along nicely under center for the Bears, and having a weapon like Seastrunk at his disposal will make the transition that much smoother. Nothing helps a QB settle in like knowing he can hand the ball off to a 1000+ yard rusher who averages 7.7 yards per carry.
Seastrunk transferred to Baylor from the Oregon Ducks prior to the 2011 season and it seems he has finally settled in with the Bears. The 5-foot 10-inch, 205 pound junior has good speed and power, as well as ever improving vision that is allowing him to grab national attention as a great RB. If he can improve on his 2012 numbers, which shouldn’t be hard to do considering he will no doubt see more touches in 2013, then he could easily overshadow that stable of ultra-talented running backs who play ball just 100 miles south of Baylor for the Longhorns.
If there is one thing that Seastrunk is not short on, it is confidence. He grabbed headlines back in December when he told Sporting News that he would be bringing home the Heisman in 2013. Seastrunk boldly proclaimed that, “I’m going to win it in 2013. If I don’t, I’m going to get very close.” I guess you can’t hate on a guy for having ambitious goals.
Seastrunk is the kind of talented player and leader that can rally a team around him and carry them on his shoulders. If he can successfully assume a bigger role in the offense, then it would take pressure off of Petty and the passing game. Baylor flung the ball around almost non-stop in 2012, and the best way for them to keep having success throwing the ball is to let Seastrunk make other teams forget about the pass. Lache Seastrunk could be the guy that lifts Baylor up and helps them stay near the top of the Big 12 in 2013, and I for one have him on my pre-season Heisman watch list.
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