Watching Baylor yesterday was a rare mid-day treat that won’t come back around until conference tournament time in March. There is just something about weekday basketball games starting at lunchtime that makes them more fun to watch. Playing San Diego State, a Sweet Sixteen team last year, the Bears passed their first real test of the season. The 77-67 win at home was an across the board showcase of everything I thought Baylor would be good and bad at.
Baylor sort of slugged their way through the first half, and only led by two. They then went on a run in the second half, took what should have been a commanding lead, and then slowly let SDSU back into the game. There were stretches of brilliant athleticism, amazing dunks, solid point guard play, and good three-point shooting. There were also stretches of out of control play making attempts, lazy defense, and overall disinterest in playing hard.
That last point is my real concern with Baylor this season. Forget their supposed lack of point guard play, especially since I think Pierre Jackson and AJ Walton will do a more than credible job throughout the season. Baylor goes on a mental break far too often for me to be comfortable. For most of the season, that won’t actually hurt Baylor, they are just too talented, but come March, it will.
Other notes from Baylor-SDSU
1) I really don’t like Baylor having to use Anthony Jones at small forward. Sure he made both his three’s yesterday, but he didn’t look comfortable with the ball in his hands. Other teams are going to strip him every time he dribbles. I know Jones is a veteran, and certainly is a solid player, but I’d rather Quincy Miller play on the outside, giving him a chance to make plays off the dribble.
2) Quincy Miller has stepped up big time with Perry Jones out, and looks like the real deal. He showed a number of good post moves, and was able to make plays off the dribble multiple times.
3) Quincy Acy can play for my team everyday. He’s an aggressive rebounder, has solid post moves, and brings great emotion to the game. I’ll be hard pressed to find a more impressive dunk this season than this one by Acy.
4) Pierre Jackson was out of control at times, but looks to be the answer to the Baylor point guard question. He had nine assists, and played down the stretch. Scott Drew clearly wants to trust him, and knows that Jackson gives his team the best chance in the final minutes.
5) Once Perry Jones gets back, this team will create more highlights per minute than any team in the nation this side of UNC and Kentucky. Going to be fun to watch.