Baylor MBB Wins First Ever Big 12 Title

Baylor MBB wins first ever Big 12 title
Photo credit: Baylor Athletics

Only two days after the No. 7 Baylor Women’s Basketball team snagged their 11th straight Big 12 title after a victory over Kansas State, the No. 3 Baylor Men’s Basketball team defeated No. 6 West Virginia 94-89 in overtime to earn their first ever Big 12 title and first conference championship since their 1950 SWC win! Prior to head coach Scott Drew’s tenure, Baylor had only made the Final Four in 1948 and 1950 and the NCAA tournament in 1988. In 2003, the Bears made headlines after a player killed one of his teammates and the head coach at the time covered it up. Since Drew was hired that same year, he’s recorded a school record 361 wins in 18 years with a postseason record of 21-9 since 2009. Baylor men’s basketball is different from most of the other top national squads as they focus more on team building and player development than teams under the likes of Krzyzewski, Self, Calipari, and Izzo. Watching Baylor play is unique because the same faces reappear for 3-4 years as opposed to the Kansas’ and Kentucky’s that see star “one and done” NBA prospects. Drew develops his teams to become true team players so as the years go by, players are willing to stay and wait their turn on the bench. And after all these years of working with junior college and non-Division I transfers and 2-3 star recruits, Drew and his record-breaking 2021 squad defied all odds to win their first ever Big 12 title in arguably the most exciting and even-matched game this season. The victory is even sweeter knowing how difficult it’s been for the Bears to battle back after eight players contracted COVID last month and the team shut down for three weeks. Baylor barely beat a truly terrible Iowa State group and lost to another shitty Kansas team by 13 shortly after. In order to secure the outright conference championship, the Bears had to win at least one of their remaining four games after the COVID pause and the Mountaineers would have to lose once, and they found a way to do both as junior Gs Jared Butler totaled 25 points, 3 rebounds, and 6 assists, and Davion Mitchell had 20 points with 3 rebounds and 5 assists. Now as the only non-Kansas team to win the outright title since 2005, the Bears face No. 17 Oklahoma State on Thursday at 6 p.m. (CT) and No. 18 Texas Tech on Sunday at 3 p.m. before the Big 12 tournament begins!