Almost exactly a year ago, we were all standing shell-shocked after R.J. Hunter's buzzer-beater sent Baylor to a early exit in the NCAA Tournament. We're in a familiar place today after Makai Mason (33 points) and the Yale Bulldogs sent the Bears home early once again, although the result isn't nearly so shocking to anyone that watched the game. Despite Charles Barkley's statement before the game that Baylor was "gonna kill these guys," the Ivy League Champions weren't the least bit intimidated, and actually became the aggressors for most of the second half, eventually running up a 13-point lead with 7 minutes to go that they salted away to earn the big victory.
For Baylor, this is obviously an extremely disappointing, yet somewhat familiar, end to what was once a promising season. And that it happened again after last year's crushing loss to Georgia State is a serious problem. Sure, you can point to the fact that it was virtually a home game for Yale in Providence and more than a few questionable calls (including the "foul" on Ishmail Wainright for getting his face in the way of that dude's elbow), but let's be serious: Barkley should have been right. Baylor should have beaten Yale relatively easily, and for a few minutes in the first half when Taurean Prince hit shot after shot, it looked like we might. But then a combination of porous Baylor defense and incredible early shooting by Yale allowed the Bulldogs to eventually take the lead going into halftime, and after that, the Bulldogs basically just fundamentaled (to make up a word) the Bears to death and built an insurmountable lead. Another furious rally that never should have had to happen fell short as the ball fluttered away from Lester Medford on our last real possession, and Baylor lost 79-75.
One of the worst parts of doing this whole blogging thing is dealing with the gut-check reactions when bad things happen. Every time we lose a game we're supposed to win, people immediately start calling for jobs and questioning the direction of programs. It's never enough that we lost, and that sucks; every reaction has to be extreme to the point of ridiculousness. I'm as guilty of it as the next guy, honestly, but that doesn't make it right. We should be better at accepting occasional failure, especially given our past, than we are.
Anyway, I hope you didn't have us going too far in your brackets, everybody. Also, throw a little love Medford's way, if you can. He's probably going to need it more than anyone right now.