13. Baylor (12-2)
When they’re on their game, Baylor can hang with anyone as we’ve seen in recent years. The Bears lost to Michigan State (badly) and Duke but have been electric in most of their other games, including a hot start to conference play in the tough Big 12.
They faced a ranked challenge on Tuesday and came through, getting an 81-72 win at home over BYU. Jalen Bridges was awesome with 25 points while JaKobe Walter added 16 and Langston Love had 15. Saturday provided another opportunity at home and the Bears prevailed again, winning 62-59 against Cincinnati. They were led by 14 points apiece from both Walter and Love as the Bears survived a cold shooting day from outside the arc.
Three straight wins to open Big 12 play is impressive regardless of the schedule. The Bears haven’t been dominant in league play, but the offense has looked great and the record is fantastic. This particular Baylor squad doesn’t have that same experience as the champions from three seasons ago, but there’s no reason to think they can’t make noise this season. The major tests begin next week with road games at Kansas State and Texas.