The Top-Ranked Baylor Lady Bears will look to complete the regular-season sweep of Tech on Saturday at the Ferrell Center.
The Lady Bears beat Texas Tech by 17 earlier this season. Head Coach Kim Mulkey was not pleased with the way her team closed out that game and with another game right around the corner on Monday in Austin, she hopes she can lean on her bench to help spread out the minutes.
“What you would like to do it play a lot of players tomorrow, but I think the game dictates that,” Mulkey said. “I’d like to play a lot more players every time we play but the game doesn’t dictate that. We’ve played these kind of quick turnarounds and it’s not just saturday-Monday. Go back to Wednesday, Saturday, monday. It seems like we’ve done that a couple of times this year. You’ve just got to rest them, make sure they take care of their bodies and I’m very aware of that”
Mulkey is 35-8 all-time against Texas Tech including 18-straight wins.
Baylor Press Release:
LADY BEARS UP TWO IMPRESSIVE STREAKS TO 31 IN WIN AT OKLAHOMA STATE
Thirty-one consecutive Big 12 wins, and 31 consecutive Big 12 road wins were achieved Wednesday when Baylor took down Oklahoma State 66-58 in Stillwater. All-America duo Lauren Cox (16p, 13r) and Kalani Brown (11p, 12r) each had double-doubles helping Baylor improve to 18-1 on the season and 8-0 in Big 12 play. The regular season streak of 31 wins vs. Big 12 opponents is the second-longest streak in Big 12 history next to Baylor’s run of 44 from 2011 to 2014. The 31-win road streak vs. Big 12 opponents in the regular season is a league record, the second longest streak of any NCAA Division I team next to UConn’s 47 and is the fourth-best all-time with Albany’s run from 2015-2017.
IT’S A LONG WAY TO THE TOP: BAYLOR RETURNS TO NO. 1 RANKING FOR FIRST TIME SINCE MARCH OF 2013
For the first time since the March 18, 2013 poll, the Associated Press Top 25 has placed the Baylor Lady Bears as the No. 1 team in the nation. Baylor’s 18-1 overall record, 8-0 mark in the Big 12 and four wins over Top 25 opponents have played a role in the nation’s highest ranking.
Monday’s poll marks the 40th time that Baylor has ranked at No. 1 in the weekly poll. The Lady Bears spent seven weeks in the top spot from January to mid-February in 2011, spent 21-straight weeks as the favorite from Oct. 29, 2011-Nov. 12, 2012 and ranked No. 1 the last 11 weeks of the 2012-13 season. Baylor’s 21-week streak was the eighth-longest streak of all-time.
TTU IN SHORT / LAST TIME OUT
At 10-10, Texas Tech has fallen on hard times under first-year head coach Marlene Stallings. The Red Raiders began the season 9-2, but have since dropped eight of their last nine, including six-straight coming into Waco Saturday. Freshman Chrislyn Carr continues to impress, averaging 19.4 points per game while forward Brittany Brewer is nearly averaging a double-double at 17.2 points and 9.7 rebounds per contest. Baylor has taken the last 18 games of the series including a Jan. 6 win this season in Lubbock where freshman Queen Egbo led the Lady Bears off the bench with 19 points and 10 rebounds. Carr matched Egbo’s 19 points in the losing effort for Texas Tech.
TOUGH AT HOME: LADY BEARS LOOK TO INCREASE HOME WIN STREAKS
Baylor’s last loss at the Ferrell Center came Feb. 6, 2017 vs. Texas (85-79), but since then the Lady Bears have protected the home floor winning 31 consecutive contests. In Big 12 play, Baylor has strung together 14-straight wins at home.
BALANCED EFFORT LEADING BAYLOR IN 2018-19
Despite having the No. 1 team in the country and in the Big 12, Baylor has taken home just one weekly Big 12 Player of the Week and Freshman of the Week award. Juicy Landrum and NaLyssa Smith earned those honors, respectively, sharing with another Big 12 player in each case. This result is partly due to the offensive balance that the Lady Bears have shown all season. Four players average in double figures while Smith is 0.1 points per contest away from being fifth. All-Americans Kalani Brown (15.4 ppg) and Lauren Cox’s (12.2 ppg) numbers are down from a season ago, mostly due to the fact that freshmen posts Smith (9.9 ppg) and Queen Egbo (6.9 ppg) are able to spell the starters off the bench with offensive production, and also due to the fact that guards Juicy Landrum and Chloe Jackson are each sharing the scoring load at 10.8 points per contest each.
POUND THE PAINT, CLEAN THE GLASS, D-UP: LADY BEARS AMONG NATION’S BEST IN REBOUNDING, SCORING EFFICIENCY, DEFENSE
In 12 statistical categories, the Lady Bears rank in the top 10 nationally. But, the Lady Bears (thru games Jan. 30) rank tops in the nation in defensive rebounds per game (34.0), rebound margin (+17.9) and field goal percentage defense (.310) while ranking fifth in field goal percentage (.503). Kalani Brown ranks 10th in the nation in field goal percentage at a .618 clip. In addition to the nation’s best defensive field goal percentage, the Lady Bears rank tops in the nation in blocked shots per game (7.2), led by Lauren Cox’s 2.42 per contest. Baylor’s rebounding is a staple of the program, and the Lady Bears have out-rebounded all 19 opponents this season, Baylor won the rebounding battle in 34 of 35 contests last year, and in 88 of the last 91 contests, BU has had the upper hand on the boards.
LADY BEARS ON THE RUN
Baylor has 17 runs this season of at least 10 unanswered points including one in five of the first eight Big 12 contests. In 12 of 19 games this season, the Lady Bears have had at least one such run, and Baylor has also put together four runs of 20 or more points. Against TCU Jan. 12, Baylor held TCU without a field goal for 14:53 from near the end of the first quarter to early in the third quarter, outscoring the Horned Frogs 27-3 in that span, including a 21-0 run. In addition, Baylor is out-scoring opponents 206-54 on the fast break this season.
SHARING IS CARING: BAYLOR LEADS NATION IN ASSISTS PER GAME
Baylor’s 22.9 assists per contest ranks best in the nation led by Chloe Jackson’s 6.5 assists per contest (ranks 7th nationally) while Lauren Cox’s assists-to-turnover ratio of 2.70:1 ranks 18th nationally, Jackson (2.58:1) ranks 21st, DiDi Richards (2.55:1) ranks 22nd and Juicy Landrum is 27th (2.44:1. In fact, out of Baylor’s 617 made field goals this season, the Lady Bears have assisted on 436 marking 70.6 percent of the team’s buckets coming on an assist from a teammate.
50 IS THE MAGIC NUMBER: BAYLOR NEARLY UNBEATABLE WHEN HITTING HALF ITS SHOTS
In just one occurrence since Kim Mulkey‘s arrival at Baylor in the 2000-01 season have the Lady Bears lost a game when shooting 50 percent or better. Baylor’s record under Mulkey when shooting 50 percent or better is 210-1, and the Lady Bears are 34-0 when shooting 60 percent or better. The lone loss came in the 2017 NCAA Tournament when Baylor fell to Mississippi State in the Elite 8, 94-85 on March 26 despite shooting 53.3 percent from the floor.
JACKSON, LANDRUM THRIVING AT POINT GUARD OUT OF POSITION
Head Coach Kim Mulkey said at the Big 12 Women’s Basketball Tipoff Oct. 16 that she had never entered a season without knowing who her point
guard would be. Despite that fact, Baylor has had no trouble distributing or sharing the ball through 19 games this season. Through Jan. 30, Baylor ranks tops in the nation in assists per game (23.4) and is second in assists-to-turnover ratio (1.71:1).
Chloe Jackson and Juicy Landrum, true-two guards, are the Lady Bears’ primary point guards this season and both have met the challenge thus far with success. Jackson ranks 7th in nation in assists per game (6.5) and 21st in assists-to-turnover ratio. (2.58:1). Landrum ranks 27th in that category at 2.44:1 while ranking second on the team with 78 assists (4.1 p/g), and DiDi Richards ranks 22nd at a 2.55:1 and is third on the team in assists at 3.9 per contest. Add post player Lauren Cox’s 2.70:1 assists-to-turnover ratio that leads the Big 12 and ranks 18th in the nation, Baylor has done well for itself without a true one.
MULKEY NAMED AS CANDIDATE FOR NAISMITH MEMORIAL 2019 HALL OF FAME CLASS BOTH AS PLAYER AND COACH
For the third-straight year Baylor head coach Kim Mulkey was named as a candidate both as a coach and player for the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. Last season, she was named a finalist as a coach in February. The finalists will be announced in mid-February during the NBA All-Star break, and the 2019 class will be introduced at the 2019 NCAA Men’s Final Four in Minneapolis, Minn.
Mulkey remains the only person to win an NCAA National Championship as a player, assistant and head coach and is one of three along with Dean Smith and Bobby Knight to win one as a player and head coach.
From the sideline, she’s coached Baylor to 18 Big 12 championships with nine regular-season titles and nine Big 12 Championship crowns. Three times Baylor has made the NCAA Final Four, and she’s led the green and gold to two national championships in 2005 and 2012.
As a player, Mulkey won the 1981 AIAW national championship and her Lady Techsters won the inaugural NCAA Women’s Basketball title in 1982.
BROWN AND COX NAMED TO TWO MIDSEASON WATCH LISTS
Both Kalani Brown and Lauren Cox collected numerous postseason accolades after the 2017-18 season, which resulted in a multitude of 2018-19 preseason honors. Jan. 9, the post duo earned spots on the John Wooden Trophy Award Midseason Top 25 watch list and Jan. 25 the duo was named to the Naismith Defensive Player of the Year Midseason Watch List. Last season, Brown was recognized as a top-five finalist for the Wooden Trophy award.
BAYLOR PLAYERS PAY FOR MULKEY’S 550-WINS TRIBUTE
The Baylor players took it upon themselves to congratulate Kim Mulkey in a pre-game presentation Wednesday for her 550th career victory achieved Sunday at Texas Tech. Senior Kalani Brown took the PA microphone and addressed the crowd an Mulkey prior to the K-State game Jan. 9, and the Lady Bears chipped in their own money for three easels of roses shaped in the numbers 5-5-0. Mulkey was told postgame that the players paid for the flowers and later in the postgame press conference said “My players bought those 550-numbered roses. [Out of their pocket] Wow. That’s the kind of kids I get to coach. I didn’t know that until the game was over, and I thought wow, my players are buying that.”
ABOUT BAYLOR’S HISTORIC WIN OVER NO. 1 UCONN
Two elite programs met in Waco Jan. 3, and for the first time in school history (previously 0-14) the Baylor Lady Bears knocked off a No. 1-ranked team with UConn falling 68-57 at a sold-out Ferrell Center on ESPN. Not only did Baylor win the game, the Lady Bears put an end to a long line of streaks set by the Huskies, who are the standard for women’s basketball with 11 NCAA Championships. Baylor’s victory ended a streak of 126 consecutive regular season games for the Huskies and a streak of 55 consecutive regular season road wins. UConn had won 209 straight games in regulation; it’s last loss in regulation also came to No. 1 Baylor Dec. 18, 2011.
The Lady Bears’ 11-point win was the largest margin of victory for a team vs. UConn since Feb. 27, 2012 when UConn fell to Notre Dame 72-59. In addition, Baylor’s defense held UConn to just a 29.4 shooting percentage, its lowest in any game the past 20 seasons.
Baylor became the third Big 12 school to ever defeat a No. 1 team joining Texas Tech who accomplished the feat twice and Texas, and just the second time that a Big 12 team has beaten a No. 1 in a non-conference matchup.
BU’s big win kept an overall home win streak at the Ferrell Center alive at 28 games while extending its non-conference home win streak to 47 games.
BROWN PICKS UP ESPNW NATIONAL HONOR AFTER LEADING BAYLOR TO WIN OVER NO. 1 UCONN
Kalani Brown didn’t shy away from the spotlight when the lights came on Jan. 3 vs. No. 1 UConn. In front of a sold-out crowd at the Ferrell Center and nationally televised on ESPN, the senior post put up 22 points and a season-high 17 rebounds. She was 11-for-17 from the floor in 36 minutes of play. Her games that week also included performances vs. UTRGV and at Texas Tech, but ESPNW.com singled out her performance against the No. 1 Huskies and tabbed her National Player of the Week on Jan. 7.
BAYLOR SIGNS TOP-10 PROSPECT OLIVER AS LONE ADDITION TO 2019 SIGNING CLASS
A year after signing five players and accepting a graduate transfer, Jordyn Oliver gets all the Lady Bears’ attention this season as the No. 10-ranked national prospect (Collegiate Girls Basketball Report) signed with Baylor. Oliver, a Prosper, Texas native is a 3-time TABC All-State selection, and was also ranked No. 11 by ESPN Hoopgurlz.
Jan. 24, Oliver was named a McDonald’s All-American and will participate in the McDonald’s All-American Games in March.
MULKEY’S MIDAS TOUCH: 1,100 WINS
Everything head coach Kim Mulkey touches doesn’t necessarily turn to gold, but if it has to do with college basketball, nearly everything she touches results in a win. Baylor’s win vs. Nicholls (Nov. 6) gave Mulkey 1,100 wins combined as a collegiate player (130, La. Tech), assistant coach (430, La. Tech) & head coach (540, Baylor). In those capacities, Mulkey’s teams are a combined 1,100-192 for an astounding .851 winning percentage.