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NCAA Basketball: NCAA Tournament First Round-Norfolk State vs Baylor

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Baylor Basketball Bold Predictions for 2022-23 Season

The ODB contributors spit their hottest takes before the season starts Monday

Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

To honor the dawn of a new Baylor Bears basketball season, the Our Daily Bears contributors have collected some of their finest, boldest, hottest takes.

If you don’t think these are hot enough, show us up in the comments. Be warned - it’s hard to have hot takes when you’re talking about the best team in the country.

Bench Believers

Everyone knows how good Baylor’s starters project to be. Adam Flagler, LJ Cryer, and Keyonte George all earned some preseason imaginary hardware. A few of us, though, are big believers in the Bench Bears this season.

Jed, for instance, believes freshman Joshua Ojianwuna will play his way out of obscurity and onto the Big 12 All-Freshman squad by season’s end. And if you watched the Globl [sic] Jam, you’d understand why. I’m buying all available Josh O stock.

Dantwan Grimes, meanwhile, will be making the transition from JUCO to the Big 12, but it won’t slow him down. Branden has dubbed Dantwan as “Baby Davion” amongst his closest circle of psychos (welcome to Branden’s circle of psychos, everyone!). Jenna, meanwhile, predicts Grimes will be the breakout star of the season and come away with the 6th Man of the Year trophy in the conference.

Star Shooting

But really, we’re all just chomping at the bit to watch George cook up some fools. In fact, George was so tantalizingly good this summer, it’s hard to even come up with a take hot enough. Let’s still try. Branden is already thinking ahead to the Tourney, calling that Keyonte is the Final Four MOP man (Most Outstanding Player). Meanwhile, I’m more focused on the regular season, where I believe Keyonte will be the Big 12 POY, an All-American 1st teamer, and the first Big 12 player to average 25 points per game since Trae Young in 2017-18

A couple of takes that go along with these George takes: Will thinks Jalen Bridges will be the second leading scorer on the team (and an All-Big 12 first teamer), Branden thinks Bridges will catch at least one body against every Big 12 team, and I’m calling that Baylor will have the most efficient offense in the country as they average better than the title team’s 41% from three.

Oh, we should also mention Branden thinks Cryer will lead the world in 3pt shooting. Sign me up for that show.

Conference Calls

Did you think Jed was bold to predict Kansas State as not the worst team in the conference? Well, Branden says Jerome Tang will lead the Wildcats to the second weekend of the NCAA Tournament. I’ll second the vote and add that the Big 12 will get 8 invitations to the dance, with West Virginia and Iowa State, a Sweet 16 team last season, sitting this one out.

Branden thinks it’s a hot take to say Kansas won’t be top 2 in the conference. How about the top three teams in the conference will be Texas schools? That’s what I’m feeling.

Title Takes

Let me list for you those who think Baylor pulls a Villanova and wins two titles in three years: Everyone at Our Daily Bears, but especially Branden. I’m calling a Baylor victory over Tennessee that leads to Scott Drew’s smile actually extending beyond the boundaries of his face. Jed thinks it will be Baylor over Creighton. Cameras will linger on the face of Doug McDermott as he is haunted by memories of getting absolutely bodied by Rico Gathers in the 2014 Sweet Sixteen.

Heart Tuggers

Branden is a sentimentalist. He’s wishing big for a March return by Jonathan Tchamwa-Tchatchoua. Flagler at Big 12 Media Days seemed energized by the progress he’s seen Ej make in his recovery. We all, of course, wish EJ the best.

And the biggest, hottest, boldest take of all:

Branden will cry when Flo Thamba plays his last game in Waco.

It’s going to be a beautiful season of basketball, my friends.

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