Campus Corner

Art Briles defends his Baylor Bears, jabs Big 12 commissioner

Baylor coach Art Briles made his case for the Bears’ inclusion in the inaugural College Football Playoff, and it started by separating his program from the rest of the Big 12.

The Bears and TCU won on Saturday, finishing with identical records of 8-1 in the Big 12 and 11-1 overall.

But Baylor beat the Horned Frogs 61-58 this season, and that’s why Briles is unhappy with Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby.

Earlier in the week, Bowlsby said Baylor and TCU would be considered co-champions because that’s what the league by-laws state.

The Big 12 has a slogan, “One True Champion,” because of its round-robin scheduling, and Briles wants Baylor to be considered that champion.

“If you’re going to throw that slogan around, ‘One True Champion,’ don’t say one thing and do another,” Briles said.

Asked if he believed it could hurt Baylor’s chances to be selected in the four-team playoff that will be announced Sunday, Briles said, “I certainly do, no question about it.”

Briles had an animated discussion with Bowlsby about the championship designation during Saturday night’s trophy presentation in Waco. Earlier in the day, TCU was presented a trophy after defeating Iowa State in Fort Worth.

Briles also suggested that his program could be hurt because it doesn’t have the brand-name recognition of other teams that will be considered for the bracket.

“My case would be, take the top 10 universities, put them on a wall and take the names off,” Briles said. “Look at the resumes and find four better teams.”

Briles said Baylor should get credit for playing a true road game (at Buffalo), playing only six home games while several others played seven, and because the Big 12, he believes, is one of the top two conferences in the nation.

To reach Blair Kerkhoff, call 816-234-4730 or send email to bkerkhoff@kcstar.com. Follow him on Twitter: @BlairKerkhoff.

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