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Baylor arrives for Sugar Bowl with point to prove

Motivation is no issue for Baylor in the Allstate Sugar Bowl.

NEW ORLEANS — In the College Football Playoff era, motivation often is a struggle during bowl season.

As the Bears pointed out several times, including from offensive coordinator Jeff Grimes, that’s not the case for them in the Sugar Bowl against Ole Miss.

“There’s this thing about the SEC, that it’s the best conference, the toughest conference,” running back Trestan Ebner said. “But I think we’re pretty tough, too.”

In Saturday’s bowl game, the Bears are out to prove a point that they’re driven.

“We have a chance to win the most games in Baylor history,” Ebner said. “It’s just something amazing to be a part of, especially considering the journey we’ve been on.”

Baylor is just two years removed from changing coaches. The Bears are right back where it seemed like they were just getting started.

Back in one of college football’s biggest bowls, the Bears are out to prove that this run of success, two Sugar Bowls in three years, is more than a flash in the pan.

“This year gives us a chance to rewrite history,” tight end Ben Sims said.

When toe finally meets leather on New Year’s Day, the Bears will get that chance against their third SEC opponent in as many bowl trips.

“Every week is a chance to make a statement about who you are when you play against somebody that’s good,” Grimes said. “I think it’s just one more opportunity to show that we’re a good team and a good offense and that we’re for real.”

And while they know what’s at stake, the Bears aren’t treating the game any differently than the first 13 this season.

“Every game, every time we touch the field, we’ve got something to prove,” quarterback Gerry Bohanon said. “We’ve got something to prove at practice today. I think it’s a big opportunity for us, I think it’s a big game for us.”

Kickoff of the 2022 Allstate Sugar Bowl between No. 7 Baylor and No. 8 Ole Miss is scheduled for 7:45 p.m. central Saturday inside the Caesar’s Superdome in New Orleans.