Let’s start by saying something that should go without saying. Matthew Mayer should forever be remembered by Baylor Nation as a champion and in a positive light. Now that we have cleared the air there let’s dive in.
Matthew Mayer has entered the transfer portal, while keeping his name in the 2022 NBA Draft. Sources have confirmed that Mayer is remaining fully focused on starting a professional career in the NBA; and going through the NBA Draft process.
This is tough news for Baylor fans, who likely have been rooting for Mayer to get drafted since he declared for the draft in April. That being said, Baylor Nation was also holding on to hope that if Mayer wasn’t getting positive feedback through the Pre-Draft process that he would return to the Bears roster and make another championship run in 2022-2023. It is now clear that Matthew Mayer Time has likely come to an end in Waco as he has entered the transfer portal.
Baylor’s Matthew Mayer will enter the transfer portal, but his focus is trying to stay in the NBA Draft, source told @Stadium.— Jeff Goodman (@GoodmanHoops) May 2, 2022
The 6-foot-9 senior averaged 9.8 points, 5.0 rebounds while shooting 32 percent from 3 last season.
A Walk Down Memory Lane
Matthew Mayer came to Waco as a 4-Star ESPN Top 100 prospect in the class of 2018. As a Freshman and Sophomore Mayer played about 12 minutes off the bench for Baylor and averaged just under 5 PPG, 2 RPG, and 1 APG.
Mayer’s coming out party came his Junior year, where Mayer was a mulletted, untamed stallion coming off the bench looking for buckets capturing the hearts of Baylor Nation. Mayer was a pivotal player on the Baylor National Championship team, averaging 8.1 PPG, 3.7 RPG, 1 APG, and 1.2 SPG in 15 minutes off the bench.
In the 2020-2021 NCAA Tournament there were stretches when Mayer would check in and seemingly not miss, and had defenders in mental pretzels. Mayer entered the draft following the 2020-2021 championship run, but ultimately returned to Baylor following feedback from NBA scouts.
Last season Mayer started in all 33 games he played in, and continued to be a fan favorite. As a Senior Mayer averaged 9.8 PPG, 5.0 RPG, 1 APG, 1 BPG, and 1 SPG; and was one of the more well rounded players in the Big 12. Mayer also took incredible strides defensively this year, posting some of the best defensive efficiency ratings in the country.
We started this piece stating that we should all remember Mayer with all positive memories, so here are some of the best highlights from Mayer’s time in the green and gold.
One of our favorite @BaylorMBB's Play of the Game from the year presented by Waco Surgical Arts ⤵️— Baylor Athletics (@BaylorAthletics) March 20, 2020
Matthew Mayer spin + dunk vs. West Virginia #SicEm pic.twitter.com/I0pISn3yDO
MATTHEW MAYER ENOUGH SAID #SCTop10 pic.twitter.com/XkPapfotKG— Barstool SicEm (@BarstoolSicEm) January 30, 2021
Matthew Mayer made this look too smooth (via @espn) pic.twitter.com/NodzRZLeki— SLAM University (@slam_university) January 5, 2022
What’s Next For Mayer?
Mayer will go through the Pre-Draft process this month, and will have until June 1 at 11:59 PM ET to remove his name from the NBA Draft. Mayer will likely take his time with his decision, and weigh the feedback from NBA scouts.
If the feedback from scouts doesn’t point to Mayer being drafted, he will likely withdraw his name from the draft and transfer. Mayer will look to make a move to a program where he will be a high usage, focal point player, with the opportunity to increase his draft stock for next season.
What’s Next for Baylor?
With the transfer additions of Jalen Bridges, Caleb Lohner, and Dantwan Grimes it seems that the Baylor coaching staff may have been expecting this move. Bridges and Lohner both play positions that fill the Mayer departure. Mayer will certainly be missed, but the staff has done a good job filling out the roster for the Bears to compete for another title next season.
This is what the Baylor MBB scholarship players will likely look like heading into the 2022-2023 season:
With the Matthew Mayer news, here’s what the MBB scholarship list should look like for next season:— Brickman Clow (@BrickmanClow) May 2, 2022
8) George (Fr)
9) Ojianwuna (Fr)
13) Flagler/transfer player
Thank You Matthew Mayer
I want to wrap up by once again by saying, Baylor Nation should have nothing but love for Matthew Mayer. We should primarily be wishing him well and hoping he finds himself on an NBA roster next season. But, if Mayer does return to play college hoops, we should be rooting that Mayer is successful and gets buckets wherever he goes. The only exception would be if whatever team Mayer is on plays the Bears.
To put it simply...Thank you Matthew Mayer for some of the best memories and most fun we have had watching basketball. One last time #IMMT.
@MatthewMayer24 picked that kid clean and then slammed it home. You know what time it is? #IMMT #SicEm pic.twitter.com/pRPegMEbeD— Sarah Rogers (@SarahRogersBU) December 29, 2020