MORGANTOWN, W.Va. - Expect Baylor cornerback Demetri Goodson to do fine if West Virginia tries any jump balls or pick plays Saturday.
Goodson, who starts for the Bears after playing in four games and suffering a season-ending ankle injury last season, played three seasons and started his last two as the point guard at Gonzaga.
"Football is an athletic sport and basketball is an athletic sport and an athlete can adjust and learn assignments and make plays," Baylor Coach Art Briles said. "That's the good thing about him. When we took him in a couple years ago, we thought he'd be an upgrade from an athletic standpoint and that he'd be able to make plays to open the field."
Goodson, who was born in Charleston, hadn't played football since his sophomore year at Collins High, in Klein, Texas, before picking it up again last year. He instead started 68 of 69 games as a sophomore and junior at Gonzaga, including a Bulldogs win against then-No. 9 Baylor in 2010.
He averaged 5.2 points and 2.6 assists in 2010-11 and totaled 529 points and 206 assists in his three seasons. The younger brother of Oakland Raiders running back Mike Goodson, Demetri figures to make his fourth straight start for No. 25 Baylor (3-0) in Saturday's game (noon, FX) against No. 9 WVU (3-0) at Mountaineer Field.
The 5-foot-10, 185-pound Goodson is sixth on the team with 16 tackles and has one interception.
"When you think about it, the point guard in basketball is handling the ball and playing defense and breaking down to play man-to-man defense," Briles said. "When you're playing cornerback in football, there are a lot of similarities that cross over. They isolate a guy on you. You've got to cover him on the field like you would on the court. It's not that hard to transfer over if you've got some good athletic ability, which Demetri does."
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The offensive nature of the Big 12 Conference and the games the teams play against one another force defensive coaches to tweak the way they view statistics, digest results and even group personnel.
They know their opponents are going to be good at moving the ball and scoring points, sometimes in a hurry, so the defensive coaches go in knowing they'll surrender big plays and touchdowns and that they'll sometimes have to use more people than normal just to cater to the tempo of the game and the toll that has on players.
WVU Coach Dana Holgorsen said it has an effect on offensive coaches and the way they function in a game, too. An offensive coach engaged in a high-scoring game might get caught up in trying to help a struggling defense by calling plays more aggressively so that the offense can stay in the lead or remain competitive.
"If you're down, what do people do? What do people do when they're down 14 or 21 points?" he said. "The offenses get antsy and start pressing and start trying to make things happen quickly. I don't want to say that's the right thing, but I'd say it's human nature. I probably have to guard against that."
Holgorsen admitted after both of the first two games he made an emotional decision to go for a first down on fourth down instead of kicking a field goal against Marshall and punting against James Madison. He said the tempo of the Maryland game got the better of him, too.