No. 8 Baylor has speedy Cannon catching passes

WACO, Texas (AP) See KD run. See KD catch.

That is what Baylor coach Art Briles saw when he watched KD Cannon play a high school game last fall. Now the speedy receiver is already having an impact for the eighth-ranked Bears.

”Not surprised one bit,” Briles said.

Cannon burst past the Northwestern State secondary for TD catches of 50, 81 and 42 yards in the first quarter Saturday night. That pushed the Bears (2-0) to a big early lead on way to a 70-6 victory.

”I never dreamed of nothing like that. Coming into the game, Coach said I was going to get more playing time than I did last week. That was all I was expecting,” Cannon said. ”I wasn’t expecting to score three touchdowns in the first quarter.”

Baylor has won 12 consecutive home games, scoring at least 69 points in six of those games. The Bears have won 21 of their 22 games in Waco since 2011, and moved up two spots Sunday in the new AP Top 25 poll.

Even without playing in the second half against the Demons (0-2), Cannon finished with six catches for 223 yards, the second-most in school history. The Baylor record is held by current Dallas Cowboys receiver Terrance Williams, who had 17 catches for 314 yards and two TDs.

Through two college games, the 18-year-old Cannon has eight catches for 282 yards and four touchdowns. That’s an average of 35.3 yards per catch, even with only a 1-yard gain on his last catch against NSU.

After two overwhelming victories to open their new campus riverfront stadium, outscoring SMU and NSU by a combined 115-6, the Bears have another short week of preparation before playing Friday night at Buffalo. That is the first of three consecutive road games, with an open date also in the span, before the next game at McLane Stadium on Oct. 11 against TCU.

Cannon caught all his passes Saturday night from backup quarterback Seth Russell, who completed 16 of 25 passes for 438 yards and five touchdowns while playing only the first half. The 438 yards passing were the most ever for the Bears in a half, as were Cannon’s three TD catches.

Senior quarterback Bryce Petty, the reigning Big 12 offensive player of the year, is still recovering after cracking two small bones in his back in the first series of the series opener. While Petty is eager to get back on the field, Briles isn’t sure if he will be ready to play against Buffalo.

The Bears were also Saturday night without Antwan Goodley (quad) and Levi Norwood (wrist) after they also got hurt in the season opener, while fellow senior receiver Clay Fuller is still recovering from a broken collarbone.

That has just provided extra opportunities early for Cannon and fellow freshman Davion Hall, who has 11 catches for 164 yards and a TD.

”You just never know what’s going to happen. Just like AG (Goodley) going down last game. Just had to be ready for it, to fill in, anytime,” Hall said. ”I was just glad I was ready and I learned from them. Just getting better every day.”