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Baylor-Oklahoma: Three Keys, How to Watch and Why the Bears Win

Baylor looks to win their sixth straight against Oklahoma

NCAA Basketball: Oklahoma at Baylor Raymond Carlin III-USA TODAY Sports

No. 2 Baylor (9-0, 2-0) takes on Oklahoma (6-2, 2-1) at 8:00 p.m. tonight in Waco. The game airs on ESPN2.

The Bears are 12 point favorites on most books. I’m working on a long profile on Jonathan Tchamwa Tchatchoua, and have been traveling some/a scrub, so we’ll wait a little while before returning to the long previews. But those will return sometime soon!

Three Keys:

  1. Limit Brady Manek- Baylor elected to switch screens late, which makes me a bit nervous about the big man’s ability to slip some screens. I asked Scott Drew about him in the press conference this week, and he said, “I think Brady’s biggest thing is that he can score inside and out.” He’s a unique challenge, and because he played with Trae Young, he feels so old.
  2. Take triples- Oklahoma plays elements of a packline defense. They give up a ton of triples, ranking 244th in number of 3-point attempts allowed. While teams are shooting out of their minds against the Sooners, they will give up plenty of quality looks. The Bears should take them.
  3. Don’t force too much inside- Oklahoma ranks 276th in percent of shots allowed at the rim, per hoop-math. They also are No. 4 in foul rate (meaning they don’t foul much). There are plenty of good jump shots to take against Oklahoma.


Oklahoma is a good squad—they rank No. 44 on KenPom. The Bears are 86% favorites on KenPom, which seems right.

I’ll say one of Baylor’s guards has a big game (though that seems like a very safe bet in any game), and Mark Vital has a nice defensive effort. The Sooners keep it closer than the spread (again, I don’t bet these, so you run the risk of going broke), but I’ll take Baylor 82-74.