Baylor MBB Downed in Big 12 Semifinals

Baylor in Big 12 Semifinals

Fewer than 10 days ago, the Baylor Men’s Basketball team excelled past the Oklahoma State Cowboys in Waco, winning 81-70, in a game that looked quite different from today’s Big 12 Semifinals. The No. 2 and first-seeded Bears (22-2, 13-2) entered the Big 12 tournament in the Quarterfinals yesterday where they defeated ninth-seeded TCU 74-68 to earn a spot in the Big 12 Semifinals. Baylor looked uncertain and flustered on both sides of the ball (even though they rank in the top categories on defense all throughout the regular season) and suffered costly turnovers even despite somehow scraping by with a win. However, the Bears weren’t as lucky today as they challenged the fifth-seeded Cowboys for the third time (can you imagine?) this season and dropped an 83-74 decision in the Big 12 Semifinals. In only the past month, the Bears have played eight games and won seven of the eight all against Big 12 opponents. In yesterday’s post after Baylor somehow got their shit together enough to notch another win in their belts, I wrote “Today, however, Baylor looked like a beat up team who couldn’t get their defense in order despite that being their strong suit throughout the entirety of the season. Of course it could be that the Bears’ playing 12 games since February is wearing on their bodies and minds, translating to the shabby performance in the Big 12 Quarterfinals, but even with what I’m sure was a verbal swift kick in the shins by Head Coach Scott Drew during halftime, Baylor struggled to pull themselves together and play like the team they were a few days ago” In today’s Big 12 semifinals, the Bears struggled immensely on the defensive side of the ball and had possibly their worst shooting day all season, landing only 38.7% (29-75) of their field goals, 21.4% (6-28) of 3s, and 76.9% (10-13) of free throws. The team’s leading scorers were their three main guards—senior MaCio Teague and juniors Jared Butler and Davion Mitchell—who had 17, 16, and 13 points, respectively. But even though the Bears didn’t get far enough to win both of the Big 12 championships, their two-loss record will still earn them a No. 1 seed in the NCAA tournament, which they’ll participate in starting next week!