Men’s hoops heads to Sweet 16 for 3rd time in 5 years
For the third time in five years, Baylor men’s basketball is headed to the Sweet 16. Just let that sink in for a minute.
Winners of 12 of their last 14 games, head coach Scott Drew’s Bears are once again peaking at the right time. After wins over No. 11 seed Nebraska (74-60) and No. 3 seed Creighton (85-55), Baylor advances to face 12th-ranked Wisconsin on Thursday in Anaheim, Calif. (6:47 p.m. CT, TBS).
In their opening two games, the Bears got contributions from just about everyone. In the win over Nebraska, Baylor’s big men (senior Cory Jefferson and sophomores Isaiah Austin and Rico Gathers) combined for 40 points and 19 rebounds. Two days later, it was the smaller guys (senior Brady Heslip and juniors Royce O’Neale and Kenny Chery) who combined for 41 points thanks to 11-of-14 shooting on 3-pointers — all while holding Creighton’s Doug McDermott, the fifth-leading scorer in NCAA history, to just 15 points.
A great Baylor crowd at the first two games in San Antonio helped the Bears improve to 8-3 in NCAA tournament play under Drew (and 17-3 in the postseason over the last six years). Baylor will look to keep that going in Anaheim against Wisconsin, the Big 10 runners-up who defeated American University and Oregon in the first two rounds to reach their third Sweet 16 in four years.
Sic ’em, Baylor basketball!