Baylor Bears – Nation’s Best ROAD WARRIORS – Defeat Oklahoma StateFebruary 4, 2012 by: DonBearlione
If you follow college basketball, you know just how hard it is to win on the road. On top of that, when you’re the #6 team in the nation and you’re Baylor, a team many opponents love to hate, it’s even tougher. On top of that, this Oklahoma State team was embarrassed a couple of weeks ago by 41 points in Waco. You think they didn’t want a little revenge?
Today’s game against Oklahoma State in Stillwater would again prove no different. While a win today would give Baylor 7 wins against Oklahoma State in the last 11 meetings, Baylor hadn’t won in Stillwater since 2003 and Scott Drew had never won there. This weekend I found a new reason to love Coach Drew. He had the team stay in a brand new hotel to try to change the karma. I can appreciate someone with a healthy dose of superstition.
Oklahoma State again went with the approach of doing everything it could to slow down the Baylor Bears. Baylor is the #1 team in the Big 12 in most offensive categories. This approach did nothing to keep Baylor off the scoreboard in Waco a few weeks ago (a game Baylor won 106-45 to hand OSU it’s worst conference loss ever and 2nd worst all time (OSU lost to Creighton by 42 points before the Great Depression)).
It was more effective this time, aided in part by some foul trouble the Bears fell into mid-way through the second half.
The Bears led 37-29 at the half thanks to a monster rebounding half by Quincy Acy. His offensive rebound and put back as time expired extended the lead to 8 at the break.
Coming out of the blocks in the second half, the Bears looked a little sluggish. This seemed to be a redux of the A&M game to some degree. I can’t put my finger on just why this happens. Is it lack of intensity? Extreme intensity by the other team, both of which (A&M and OSU) have been desperate for a home win? Maybe neither. It may be just how things go sometimes.
Baylor scored 2 points the first 6:15 of the second half (with the game tied 39-39) and then went on a mini-run to build a 9 point lead (50-41) with 8:18 to go.
Pierre Jackson then picked up his 4th foul (the first foul trouble he’s really been in all year) with 7:58 to go and went to the bench. AJ Walton took over the point and did a manageable job handling the rock. It seems at times he tries to do a little too much instead of just working to distribute the ball. Over the next couple of minutes, he took 2 ill advised shots, including one from about 18 feet early in the shot clock. I know he’s smarter than this and can easily fix it. We will need him to be able to give us quality minutes to make a deep run this year in the tourney.
When Pierre came back in with just under 6 minutes left with 4 fouls. At that time, it was 52-45 so we had only surrendered 2 points in the two minutes he sat.
We should also note that with 9 minutes to play, Baylor had shot 17 three pointers. Baylor is a pretty good 3 point shooting team, but today they weren’t on, finishing 4-21. I was glad to see them work the ball inside a lot more the last 9 minutes of the game (taking only 4 3′s during that time), especially given that Nash was in foul trouble with 4 fouls and Baylor had more depth and size down low.
From the time Pierre came back in until the 1:21 mark, Oklahoma State was in the midst of a 12-4 run which would see them grab the lead momentarily 57-56. Baylor then knuckled down as Mr. Clutch did his thing getting to the rack and distributing for quality shots and free throws.
Then Perry Jones made his presence felt. He was HUGE, coming up time and time again with offensive rebounds and put backs or jams. I noticed him crashing the boards hard all game. Clearly Coach Drew’s message to the team is getting through. Now it’s about consistent execution.
Baylor was up 5 with under 20 seconds left when Quincy Miller appeared to have a steal, but Okie State picked up the ball and with time running out on the shot clock through in a prayer from 3 that was answered cutting the lead to to.
Scott Drew then drew up an excellent play to get Heslip the ball in a 1 on 1 situation on the inbounds where he couldn’t be trapped. Keaton Paige was forced to foul sending Heslip to the line where he was already 4-4 today and 23-24 on the year with 9 seconds left.
Heslip missed the front end of the 1 on 1 for only his second miss of the year. Quincy Acy, once again, proved pivotal he secured one last offensive rebound and swung it to Anthony Jones who drew the foul.
Ant is only shooting 53% from the FT line this year. I actually didn’t realize this as he’s usually a very solid FT shooter. I think this mainly has to do to his change in role and the fact that when he’s been going to the line, which hasn’t been often this year due to limited minutes, he’s not typically in the flow of the game. 2 makes and this game would be iced and Ant buried em both.
Baylor hadn’t won in Stillwater since 2003 and hadn’t had a sweep of Oklahoma State in almost 90 years. Coach Drew also picked up his first win @ OSU.
Another great road win for the Baylor Bears to keep the momentum for what will be an almost 11,000 strong crowd on Wednesday at the Ferrell Center when Kansas comes to town. This game has huge implications for the Bears’ hopes at a Big 12 title.
One last thing. If I know Coach Drew, and he’s as superstitious as I am, I bet they stay in the same hotel next year.
#FEARtheFERRELL on Wednesday vs Kansas
Baylor – 56-5 in the big 3 sports this year #12 football, #2 RPI men’s bball (#6 AP), #1 women’s bball #UNPRECEDENTED
- Game Balls go to:
– Brady Heslip for burying 1 and 1s with under 2 minutes left to ice the game. What an asset to this team that will pay dividends as we look to make a deep run in the tourney
– Quincy Acy for being a glass eater all game long and again being involved in or securing a huge rebound at the end of the game to seal the victory
– Honorable Mention to Perry Jones who did what he do. Another double double and continuing to be more consistent. His 17-18 foot jumper is deadly and he’s stroking it
- Baylor, the Big 12′s leading FG % team shot only 40.7% from the floor, but put in another stellar defensive effort holding OSU to 40.0%
- Baylor out-rebounded OSU 37-28 (14 offensive to 7) – EXCELLENT Job!
- The Cookie Monster charted yet another double double (12 pts / 11 boards) and gobbled up SIX offensive rebounds
- Not to be outdone, Perry Jones stuffed the stat sheet again with yet another double double (16 pts (on 7/13 shooting) / 11 bords), 7 coming on the offensive end
- Quincy Miller’s minutes were limited late again as he got into foul trouble for the second game in a row. The fouls he’s committing are freshman fouls sometimes which he will easily clean up as he gets more experience
- Pierre Jackson put in another monster game handling the rock with only 1 TO and 4 assists. He just keeps getting better distributing the ball
- Gallagher – Iba arena was again empty in the second deck. I just have to point this out because the bigger state schools be-rated Baylor for poor fan support when our teams didn’t play well. Many of those teams are eating a ton of crow now as they continue to dress their fans up as empty seats
- Baylor’s RPI is now up to #2 in the country
- Baylor improves to 8-1 away from the Ferrell Center this year and is assured a winning record on the road in Big 12 play