Why should this nominee be considered for the Broyles Award?
Jeff Grimes has led one of the nation’s most remarkable turnarounds in his first season at Baylor. The Bears went 2-7 a season ago, but have become one of the nation’s best turnaround stories with an 8-2 record through 10 games this season. Baylor has knocked off a nation’s-best three ranked opponents, ending No. 4 Oklahoma’s 17-game winning streak and defeating No. 14 Iowa State and No. 19 BYU. With those victories, Baylor has climbed to No. 11 in the AP Top 25 after entering the season with zero votes in the preseason poll.
Coach's Past Performance
Grimes spent the past three seasons as offensive coordinator at BYU before making the move to Baylor in the spring of 2021. His 202 BYU offense finished third nationally in scoring (43.5 ppg), seventh nationally in total offense (522.2 ypg) and eighth nationally with only 1.0 sacks allowed per game. He mentored QB Zach Wilson, who became the No. 2 overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft.
Team Record and Standings
Baylor is 8-2 on the season and sits in a tie for second in the Big 12 standings at 5-2. The Bears have a strong change to advance to the Big 12 Championship game if they win their two remaining games at Kansas State and at home against Texas Tech.
Grimes’ arrival in Waco has seen the Bears’ rushing offense jump from 123rd nationally last season (90.3 ypg) to fourth nationally (237.5 ypg) in its first season under Grimes. The Baylor offense, known as RVO (Reliable, Violent Offense), also ranks sixth nationally in yards per play (6.97) and tied for fourth nationally with only 8 sacks allowed over 10 games. sThe Baylor offense has scored at least 27 points in 9 of 10 games in its first season under Grimes after doing so in only 3 of 9 games a season ago.
Individual Player Stats
Grimes has mentored running back Abram Smith, who came over to the offensive side of the ball in the spring after playing last season at linebacker, into an All-American candidate. Smith ranks fifth nationally with 1,203 rushing yards, third nationally with 7.34 yards per carry and second in Baylor history with seven 100-yard rushing games this season. Grimes has also guided a quarterback who entered the season having never started a game into one of the nation’s effective dual-threat QBs. Gerry Bohanon is 1 of 5 QBs nationally with 16+ passing TDs and 9+ rushing TDs, joining Matt Corral, Malik Willis, Sam Hartman and Sam Howell. Additionally, wide receiver Tyquan Thornton ranks second in the Big 12 with 8 receiving touchdowns and third with 763 receiving yards. Grimes has also gotten creative by inserting linebacker Dillon Doyle as a fullback on occasion, and Doyle became the first player in Big 12 history to record a rushing TD, receiving TD and a sack in the same game when he did so against BYU.