No. 1 Baylor (21-1, 10-0) knocked off Oklahoma State (11-12, 1-9) 78-70. The win is Baylor’s 20th straight and matches the 2008 Jayhawks for the second longest winning streak in Big 12 history. That Kansas team won the national title, and Baylor might too. The Bears take on Texas at 8:00 on Monday in Austin.
After Baylor led by 16, Oklahoma State tied the game at 51-51 with 8:50 left. The Bears, with Freddie Gillespie and Tristan Clark sporting four fouls, elected to play Mark Vital at center surrounded by four guards. That lineup helped Baylor get plenty of open looks, but Oklahoma State posted up quite well, and Lindy Waters hit a big three.
Mark Vital took a shot to a less than desirable place, and exited the game. Freddie Gillespie entered, and on his second possession, he made a turnaround jumper and drew the foul. He missed the free throw—a devastating problem for Baylor all game, as they were 9-of-19 from the line with that miss—and the Bears lead was 67-62 with 3:48 left.
Oklahoma State pulled within two with 35 seconds left. Baylor had the ball, and Teague drew the foul. He made both foul shots to give Baylor a four point lead.
Isaac L. drew a foul on Butler, and he missed both free throws with 9.6 seconds left. Gillespie secured the rebound and the officials called a foul on Oklahoma State. Mike Boynton then added a technical foul, as he was angry that Gillespie benefited from a questionable whistle. He picked up another. But being the good man he is—he did vote Baylor No. 1 in the Big 12 preseason poll—he shook hands with Baylor’s staff on the way to the exit. He’s a good man that should have it going soon. But 2020 is the Bears’ year. The Cowboys can hope for 2021.
The Bears have to figure out their shooting woes. They started 8-of-24 from three and missed so many free throws, including 1-and-1 attempts. Baylor started 12-of-25 from the fre throw line.
Even with their shooting woes and inability to put away the game today, the Bears are still 10-0 in the Big 12. Baylor was the No. 1 overall seed in the NCAA Tournament reveal today too. But the Bears should take their offensive issues very seriously. The Bears legitimately could win the national title. They’ll need to be better than they were tonight to do so, but they’ve done that plenty of other nights, and the important takeaway today is that they won yet again.