|No. 16/14 Baylor (8-1) vs. No. 24/24 Texas A&M (8-2)|
Dec. 19, 2015 | 8:00 p.m. CT
College Station, Texas | Reed Arena (12,989)
TV: ESPNU and WatchESPN
Radio: ESPN Central Texas
In hindsight, we probably should have made a bigger deal out of this game, Baylor's third against a ranked opponent so far this season, considering we're playing A&M in an actual sporting event. But we didn't, so that stinks.
Baylor has won six straight games against A&M dating back to 2010 and KenPom seems to like Baylor in this game since we're ranked #17 and the Aggies are ranked #35. But you can throw that out the window when you're talking about a rivalry game in which we are the away team. It's going to be a war.
Keys to the Game
1. Baylor needs to come out of the gates strong offensively. In the only road game thus far this season up at Oregon back in November, the Bears got off to a real slow and sloppy start and never were able to establish much of an offensive rhythm. Baylor has played six games since that loss and I think the players all have adjusted more to what their roles will end up being. Lester Medford will be counted on to keep the ship going in the right direction and get the Bears into a good rhythm and get consistently good shots.
2. Taurean Prince needs to be an animal in this game without panicking and trying to do too much. If the Taurean Prince that dropped 30 on Vandy shows up, Baylor has an impact guy that they can ride to a huge road win. If Prince is the over-aggressive turnover machine that has creeped into his game at times this season, it's going to be tough for Baylor against an A&M defense that is ranked 33rd in KenPom adjusted defense.
3. The Bears absolutely dominated the Aggies on the boards when these two teams met last season in Waco, and being able to win that battle again should go a long way in helping Baylor get a win. We all know what a force Rico Gathers can be rebounding the basketball but as a team, Baylor rebounds 46.5% of its missed shots, an absurd percentage that ranks 3rd in all of Division I.
4. Jalen Jones and Danuel House are A&M's two leading scorers and the two guys that really make the Aggies click on offense. If Baylor's wings can slow down their production, most notably with Ish Wainright and Taurean Prince, it makes it extremely tough for A&M score since point guard Anthony Collins is not a guy who typically looks to create his own shot.
- G - Lester Medford (SR | 11 | Tucson, AZ)
- G - Ish Wainright (JR | 24 | Kansas City, MO)
- G - Al Freeman (SO | 25 | Charlotte, NC)
- F - Rico Gathers (SR | 2 | LaPlace, LA)
- F - Taurean Prince (SR | 21 | San Antonio, TX)
- G - Anthony Collins (SR | 11 | Houston, TX)
- G - Alex Caruso (SR | 21 | College Station, TX)
- F - Jalen Jones (SR | 12 | Dallas, TX)
- F - Danuel House (SR | 23 | Fresno, TX)
- C - Tonny Trocha-Morelos (SO | 10 | Cartagena, Colombia)