BUFFALO, NY (AP)–Bryce Petty threw four touchdown passes, leading No. 8 Baylor to a 63-21 victory against Buffalo on Friday night.
Petty went 23 of 34 for 416 yards through three quarters, and Shock Linwood had 98 yards rushing and two touchdowns for Baylor (3-0). Hawthorne Lynx and Jay Lee each caught two touchdowns passes.
It was Petty’s first game since he cracked two small bones in his back during a season-opening 45-0 win against SMU.
The Bears scored on their first four possessions on their way to a 35-0 halftime lead. Baylor had more touchdowns (five) than Buffalo had first downs (four) in the first half.
The Bulls (1-2) scored twice on consecutive possessions in the third quarter. Joe Licata hit Devon Hughes for 41-yard touchdown pass, and Anthone Taylor scored on a 41-yard run.
The Bears showed no signs of fatigue in their third game in 13 days after blowing out their first two opponents at home. Coming off a 70-6 win of FCS’ Northwestern State, Baylor has now outscored its opponents 178-27 this season.
The defending Big 12 champs now get a two-week break before opening their conference schedule at Iowa State on Sept. 27.
Bears freshman receiver KD Cannon scored on an electrifying 89-yard catch. Backup quarterback Seth Russell threw a 37-yard touchdown pass to Lee, and also scored on a 31-yard run.
Linwood opened the scoring on a 2-yard run and also added a 24-yard score, when he burst up the middle untouched. Johnny Jefferson also scored on a 14-yard run.
The Mid-American Conference Bulls, who lost 70-13 at Baylor last season, scored on consecutive possessions in the third quarter. Joe Licata hit Devon Hughes for 41-yard touchdown pass, and Anthone Taylor scored on a 41-yard run that cut Baylor’s lead to 42-14 with 7:09 left in the period.
The touchdowns were the first surrendered by the Bears this year.
Licata was 14 of 21 for 171 yards, and Hughes had six catches for 72 yards. Backup quarterback Tony Daniel closed the scoring with a 17-yard touchdown pass to Malcolm Robinson.
The Bears grabbed control during a four-play stretch six minutes into the game.
With Buffalo facing third-and-7 on its opening drive, Licata found Marcus McGill wide open up the right sideline only to have the ball bounce off the receiver’s fingers.
Buffalo was forced to punt, and the Bears capitalized. Petty made it 14-0 by hitting a wide-open Cannon, who burst past defensive back Okezie Alozie up the right sideline.
Baylor has now topped 40 points in four straight games dating to last season, and 28 of its past 35.
The Bears maintained their roll on offense despite missing four key receivers. Antwan Goodley (quadriceps), Levi Norwood (wrist), Corey Coleman (hamstring) and Clay Fuller (broken collarbone) all sat out.
Cannon, an 18-year-old freshman, continues to provide a big-play threat. He had five catches for 171 yards a week after finishing with six catches for 223 yards and three touchdowns.
Bulls fans were asked to wear black, and the team unveiled new black helmets and mostly black jerseys as part of a promotion at UB stadium.
The blackout, however, quickly turned into a blowout courtesy of Baylor’s high-tempo, quick scoring attack.
The Bears finished with 669 yards of offense and 27 first downs. Their quick-strike attack was on track with six of nine scoring drives lasting less than two minutes.