Scott Drew’s Baylor Bears have been one of the most consistent teams in college basketball this season. After a Covid pause at the beginning of February that halted things for the program for a little over two weeks, all eyes were on Baylor to see how they would look after the time off.
While choppy at first, they still managed to win the majority of their games down the stretch run entering the NCAA Tournament. So far in the big dance, Baylor has won every game by at least nine points. They are one of four remaining and here are two bold reasons as to why Baylor win will the 2021 NCAA Championship.
1.) Superior guard play
The bold take wedged with in this is the “superior” part but it’s absolutely the truth. Gonzaga has tremendous guard led by Jalen Suggs, UCLA gets it down across the board as does Houston, but neither of the three have a better full array of talent at the guard position compared to Baylor.
Davion Mitchell is maestro at times for Scott Drew, running the show at point guard. He’ll blow by you with his speed or he’ll step on a dime and pull up from 15-feet. Mitchell averages 14 points per game and fills it up to a clip of 45% from three-point range.
Jared Butler is the leading scorer for the Bears, averaging 16.5 points per night and he, too, can light it up from behind the arc. Butler is smooth and always in control when the rock is in his hand. And if you have your hand down good luck, as the guard shoots 40% from the land beyond.
Last but certainly not least, MaCio Teague. Teague is the one guard on Baylor that often gets forgotten about as scouts have Butler and Mitchell as the sure fire, NBA talent on this team. Teague is just as efficient as the other two.
He scores 15.9 points per contest and shoots 39% from three. It’s a legit three-headed monster at guard for Baylor. And oh yea, they defend the perimeter as well as any guard tandem in the country. It’s truly a group that does it on both ends.
These three have the chance to help get Baylor a National Championship this year.
2.) The three ball
No team in America shoots the three ball better than Baylor does in college hoops this year. Obviously a big reason is the aforementioned trio of Mitchell, Butler and Teague. But Baylor has plenty more snipers from three.
As a team, they shoot it at 41.4% from three, which is tops in the country. Mitchell, Butler and Teague do a lot of the heavy lifting but names like Matthew Mayer and Adam Flagler can not be forgotten.
Mayer is 40% from the land beyond while Flagler is 42-100 himself, good for 42%. No deficit is ever to big for Baylor because they can flip the switch on with the three ball in the snap of a finger.
They’ve also shown they can win in this tournament when it is going well from three. Against Villanova, the Bears shot a woeful 3-19 from three-point range and still won the game by 11. It’s a terrifying stat for opposing teams to look at. They’re nearly unbeatable when the offense is clicking and the three’s are falling, but they can still beat a team like Villanova by 11 on horrendous off nights. If they want to beat Houston and then Gonzaga or UCLA, they will need the three ball to fall.
Baylor has been incredible this season and despite the odds favoring Gonzaga out of the four remaining teams, Baylor has as good a shot as any to win the whole thing.