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Baylor Football

50 Questions For Baylor Football Representatives at Big 12 Media Days

July 9, 2024
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LAS VEGAS – With Big 12 Media Days set for Wednesday, July 10, head coach Dave Aranda and select players will make their first public appearance since the end of spring football in April.

The SicEm365 staff compiled 50 questions for Aranda and Baylor’s player representatives: Keaton Thomas (RSo.), Matt Jones (6Sr.), Carl Williams IV (So.), Richard Reese (Jr.) and Ketron Jackson (Sr.).


Questions for Aranda Specifically:

  1. Last year, the coaching staff felt confident about what they saw in practice, but it didn’t translate onto the field on Saturdays. How do you avoid that happening again?
     
  2. What are the biggest benefits with you focusing mostly on the defense and the linebackers this fall?
     
  3. Will you feel less stressed or overwhelmed now that the offense is completely in Jake Spavital’s hands?
     
  4. With you on the hot seat going into the year, how does that pressure not get to you or the team daily?
     
  5. Was hiring Khenon Hall one of your best decisions while at Baylor?

Defensive-Based Questions:

  1. Can we anticipate the defense to make a massive leap forward this fall after a catastrophic 2023 season?
     
  2. How do you view Aranda’s decision to focus solely on being the defensive coordinator this year?
     
    Jack Mackenzie - SicEm365
    Coming off a 3-9 season in 2023, head coach Dave Aranda is on the hot seat entering the fall.
  3. How crucial was it last year for so many underclassmen on the defensive side of the ball to get a ton of reps?
     
  4. With the defense lacking intensity at times last fall, how do you recreate intensity like that in the offseason so that it doesn’t happen again?
     
  5. Which players are you most excited about on this year’s defense?
     
  6. Can you talk about your relationship with Gary Patterson and what he has meant to the team so far?
     
  7. What players usually take the biggest leap – freshman to sophomores, sophomores to juniors or is it different for everybody?
     
  8. What latest offensive innovations have challenged or will challenge your defense the most?
     
  9. What are the challenges when new faces are brought in and getting them up to speed on terminology?

Offensive-Based Questions:

  1. What are Spavital’s biggest strengths as an offensive coordinator and a coach?
     
  2. What were your first impressions of Dequan Finn?
     
  3. How has Sawyer Robertson transitioned back into a scheme he is very familiar with?
     
  4. How big of a difference will it make that Baylor will have a quarterback who can scramble and make things happen with his legs?
     
    Jack Mackenzie - SicEm365
    Jake Spavital is heading into his first season as Baylor’s offensive coordinator.
  5. Which players are going to create a buzz that Baylor fans might not be familiar with yet?
     
  6. In practice when the offense is going against the defense, do you feel like the competition is stiffer than it was last spring and last fall camp?
     
  7. Has the new offense created more confidence with the group after a tough season in 2023?
     
  8. How will the receivers benefit from this scheme change?
     
  9. Richard Reese is coming off a season that probably didn’t meet his own expectations, but he is here this week to represent the team and working to have a big bounce-back season. What does that say about him?

Recruiting-Based Questions For Aranda:

  1. How much more difficult is it to recruit when you are coming off a season where you don’t necessarily have the best record to flex?
     
    Baylor Athletics
    Four-star South Oak Cliff EDGE Kamauryn Morgan's commitment to Baylor on Sunday.
  2. A lot of prospects will talk about Baylor’s coaching staff and how genuine they are. There were a good amount of changes to the coaching staff this offseason, so how do those things stay in place with a lot of turnover?
     
  3. How does Aranda navigate talking with recruits when you know his job is on the line?
     
  4. Does Texas and Oklahoma leaving the Big 12 open more room for Baylor to operate? Or vice versa, is that advantage washed out by schools like Houston and SMU joining power conferences?
     
  5. With Baylor putting together a strong 2025 class, how is NIL impacting recruiting?
     
  6. With the change up with NIL at Baylor after the season, was that to align the program properly with its peers?
     
  7. What are the biggest recruiting differences between today and pre-NIL when you were at LSU and Wisconsin?
     
  8. What true freshmen do you feel can make an impact this fall?

Grab-Bag Questions:

  1. What did you like about Baylor’s transfer portal haul compared to last year?
     
  2. What’s been the biggest thing the coaching staff has tried to implement this offseason?
     
  3. What do you like about the 12-team CFP that’s being implemented for the first time this year?
     
  4. With Aranda on the hot seat going into the year, how does that pressure not get to the team on a daily basis?
     
    Jack Mackenzie - SicEm365
    The Big 12 will consist of 16 members this fall, with four new members joining the conference: Arizona, Arizona State, Colorado and Utah.
  5. What are your thoughts on having multiple bye weeks this season?
     
  6. It’s cliche to say “chip on your shoulder,” but when you’re picked toward the bottom of the conference, is there comfort in knowing that y’all can surprise people this fall?
     
  7. What are your thoughts on Baylor’s new uniforms?
     
  8. Do head coaches or players view realignment differently than fans or media members? When you look around and see 16 schools represented here at Media Days, what are your initial thoughts?
     
  9. Are you excited to play NCAA ‘25? Do you have any fond memories of playing that video game in the past?

Fun Questions:

Cole Tompkins - SicEm365.com
Baylor was picked 12th in the preseason Big 12 media poll.
  1. Who is the strongest “small” guy on the team?
     
  2. Which player on the team could run for a political office?
     
  3. Name an interesting fact about yourself.
     
  4. Which coach has the best singing voice?
     
  5. Which road trip between the four new schools—Arizona, Arizona State, Colorado or Utah— are you looking forward to the most?
     
  6. Which Big 12 mascot would win in a fight?
     
  7. Aside from Baylor, who has the best uniforms in the conference?
     
  8. In Aranda’s four seasons as head coach at Baylor, who was the hardest person to game-plan for and who was the best player you have coached against?
     
  9. Which 365 Sports member is most likely to end up in a Las Vegas jail cell tonight?
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50 Questions For Baylor Football Representatives at Big 12 Media Days

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