The Bears, dominant as always, it would appear.
It’s been so long since a team not named Baylor won the Big 12, that the last school to do it has not been in the Big 12 in half a decade: Nebraska. Back then, in 2010, the Bears placed sixth in the standings, just behind Texas A&M, but well ahead of Missouri and Colorado.
A lot has changed since then. Each of the aforementioned teams, minus Baylor, have left the Big 12 Conference. Yet the Bears have stayed consistent, and the conference crown has landed in Waco, Tex. each of the past eight seasons.
One month into the 2018-19 season, and it looks like the status quo should remain.
In Sunday’s SEC/Big 12 Challenge, No. 4 Baylor (7-0) squared off with No. 18 South Carolina in Columbia, S.C., and the Bears didn’t just win, they mauled the Gamecocks. In the two powers’ first-ever meeting, Baylor led 32-13 after the first quarter, and ran away with a 94-69 victory. It was a completely dominant effort.
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- Your Day in Women’s Basketball, October 21: Former Texas Tech coach Stollings files lawsuit
- Your Day in Women’s Basketball, August 9: Taurasi to play again, but when?
- Your Day in Women’s Basketball, August 4: Wubble Trouble for the Liberty
- Baylor adds UCLA transfer Jaden Owens
Same ole, same ole.
During Baylor’s eight-year run, no one in the Big 12 has been as good as them. Obviously. But there’s been one team that’s been as consistent: Oklahoma.
This decade, Oklahoma is the only team besides Baylor to have gone without a losing season in Big 12 play. In fact, the Sooners have not had a losing record in conference play this millennium.
But things aren’t normal in Norman.
On Sunday, Oklahoma (2-5) was outplayed by Auburn — falling 95-79 for their fifth straight loss.
The Sooners started off the season with two home wins, but have fallen in three neutral site games and two road contests. First, it was South Florida. Then, UAB and Clemson in the Bahamas. Next, New Mexico, and finally Auburn.
Oklahoma is losing in spite of an incredible start by freshman guard Taylor Robertson. In seven games, she’s hit 36 3-pointers — second most in the country — and is averaging 19.6 points per game on 43.4 percent 3-point shooting.
She’s made 15 treys over the team’s past two games, which, of course, were both losses.
Yes, the Sooners are very young, and yes, there’s a lot of season left, but the road doesn’t get any easier. After a winnable home game against Central Arkansas on Wednesday, they’ll face No. 20 DePaul on Sunday and then rest 10 days off before their next contest: No. 1 UConn.
They’ll then visit a decent SMU team in what should prove to be a tough game. If things don’t go their way, Oklahoma could be looking at a bleak 3-8 record heading into Big 12 play. Yikes.
For the past 19 seasons — every year since 2000 — the Sooners have made the NCAA Tournament.
Unlike Baylor’s Big 12 streak, Oklahoma’s might not be OK.