No. 2 Baylor Stays Undefeated with 83-69 Win at No. 6 Texas in Big 12 Action

Blake SchusterSenior Analyst IIFebruary 3, 2021

Baylor forward Flo Thamba (0) celebrates a score against Texas during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game Tuesday, Feb. 2, 2021, in Austin, Texas. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)
Eric Gay/Associated Press

No. 2 Baylor kept its undefeated streak alive and continued to separate itself from the rest of the Big 12 by knocking off No. 6 Texas, 83-69, at the Frank Erwin Center on Tuesday.

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📹 Highlights from tonight's 1⃣4⃣-point win over Texas in Austin. 🙌 #SicEm 🐻 | #TimeIsNow 🏀 https://t.co/Fy8Se0T72K

The in-state rivalry gave the Bears (17-0, 9-0 Big 12) their fourth victory over a ranked team this season after previously defeating No. 5 Illinois, No. 15 Texas Tech and No. 9 Kansas. Tuesday's win may prove to be a season-defining victory for a program whose best win to date came against the Illini back on Dec. 2.

With Illinois having since dropped to No. 12 in the rankings, the Texas game took on greater meaning.

Baylor handled the pressure with ease and built itself a 3.5-game lead for first place in the conference with eight games to play. 


Notable Performers

Davion Mitchell, G, Baylor Bears: 27 points, 4 assists, 1 rebound, 5 three-pointers

Jared Butler, G, Baylor Bears: 21 points, 4 steals, 3 assists

Andrew Jones, G, Texas Longhorns: 25 points (career high), 5 rebounds, 3 assists

Jericho Sims, F, Texas Longhorns: 10 points, 9 rebounds, 1 assist           

Greg Brown Dunk Wakes Up Baylor

Maybe if Greg Brown hadn't been called for a technical foul the Baylor Bears leave Austin with their first loss of the season.

With 13:18 to play, amid a stretch of play that saw Baylor and Texas swapping leads, Brown skied for arguably the dunk of the year and dropped two of the five points he'd contribute on Tuesday. On the way down from the rim, his glare caught the attention of the referees who T'd him up just as the score flipped to read 55-51, Bears. 

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GREG BROWN PUT HIM IN THE RIM 🤯 #SCtop10 https://t.co/mGReyDOeji

The technical proved to be the turning point. 

Jared Butler would make both free throws before Davion Mitchell hit back-to-back layups to stretch Baylor's lead back to 10. Whatever momentum Brown's dunk had swung towards Texas, it all went right back to the Bears after the ensuing whistle.

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20 PIECE 😤 @DrewdotCash | #HookEm https://t.co/sMUNX1RRpO

Despite a career performance from UT's Andrew Jones (25 points), the Longhorns didn't have enough secondary scoring options down the stretch to spread out Baylor's defense once the Bears rebuilt their lead. 

Not with Mitchell, Butler and MaCio Teague combining for 58 points.

Maybe if Brown doesn't get called for a technical, that's not the case. Baylor won't be thinking twice about it.


Baylor's Perfect Season Rolls On

If there's a team capable of ending Baylor's undefeated streak, the Bears don't appear to have them currently scheduled. 

Tuesday may have proven to be the toughest test remaining on Baylor's schedule. Having to face a No. 6-ranked Texas team on the road in a building allowing fans for the first time in two months shouldn't have been an easy task. 

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Wanna hang? #SicEm 🐻 | #TimeIsNow 🏀 https://t.co/tToj4s3AwO

The Bears made the last four minutes almost boring, even with the Longhorns seemingly in striking distance. 

Now it's unclear who could challenge Baylor—at least as far as the Big 12 is concerned. 

This used to be the problem the league had with Kansas. It has shifted south to Waco overnight and the conference is recalibrating on the fly, looking for ways to break through against head coach Scott Drew's group of versatile guards. 

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J⃝A⃝M⃝ #SicEm 🐻 | #TimeIsNow 🏀 https://t.co/G7LFGjdNnr

Baylor still has to play road games at No. 9 OU and No. 23 Kansas, but had zero issue routing those programs earlier this year. Hosting No. 13 Texas Tech could be a problem, but the Bears' wingspan can shutdown iso players like Mac McClung. 

Home games against Iowa State and TCU coming up shouldn't be a problem for Baylor, either. 

It seems No. 17 West Virginia will have the best opportunity to end Baylor's run. The Mountaineers and Bears play a home-and-home series that begins in Morgantown on Feb. 15 before the two clash again in Texas on Feb. 18. Rarely does the Big 12 schedule back-to-back games against the same opponent, but a previously postponed matchup against WVU in early January made it a necessity. Having two cracks at a top program in three days could be all it takes for West Virginia coach Bob Huggins to stymie Drew's offense. 

No one else has been able to do so yet. If not West Virginia, there may not be an answer at all.  

What's Next

The Longhorns are back in action on Saturday when they visit Oklahoma State at 3 p.m. ET on ABC. Baylor will return home for a Saturday matchup with TCU at 4 p.m. ET on ESPN+.