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December 10, 2012A potential Top 20 recruiting class took a slight ding Monday when four-star offensive lineman Caleb Benenoch went down to the wire between Baylor and UCLA and picked the Bruins.Let's hope the Bears get some revenge on Dec. 27 when they play UCLA in the Holiday Bowl.
Yes, it stings to lose Benenoch. Baylor was neck-and-neck with UCLA down the stretch and the Bears seemed to have some favor with the family with brother Josh Benenoch already at Baylor as a walk-on.
So where do the Bears' go from here?
The coaching staff will continue to evaluate the JUCO ranks and a late run at a junior college lineman might be made before the Dec. 19 signing date.
Baylor still awaits a decision on Waco High's Andrew Billings, who likely would play on the defensive line for Baylor, but is being recruited as a center by Texas, the main competition.
The Bears still have four offensive linemen in the 2013 class with Blinn College's Tyler Edwards, Irving's Rami Hammad, Hayward (Calif.) Chabot Community College's Simo Kulmavlita and Fort Bend Marshall's Darius Moore.
It gives Baylor depth at the position after signing just two offensive linemen in 2011 -- Tre'Von Armstead and Kyle Fuller.
The 2013 Bears' offensive line will need some re-shuffling with two starters - center Ivory Wade and right guard Cameron Kaufhold - out of eligibility. Jake Jackson, who has made three career starts, will be gone.
Junior Cyril Richardson will be back at left guard. Redshirt freshman Spencer Drango will play left tackle. Edwards is likely to get the first shot at center.
Sophomore Troy Baker, who has started at right tackle, could move into a guard spot, opening an opportunity for junior Kelvin Palmer or redshirt freshman Pat Colbert to win a starting spot.
Don't forget redshirt freshman Desmine Hilliard, who currently backs up Richardson. And the offensive line coaches are pleased with the progress of redshirt freshman LaQuan McGowan this fall.
Baylor remains in great shape on the offensive line. Their two line coaches, Randy Clements and Jeff Lebby, are excellent recruiters and coaches who work extremely hard whether it's in a living room or on the practice field.