Baylor basketball is headed back to the Final Four for the first time in 71 years after knocking off Arkansas in the Elite Eight.
Baylor basketball is in the Final Four for the first time in generations.
The Baylor Bears are one step closer to a national championship. Baylor’s 81-72 victory over the Arkansas Razorbacks gets the Bears to the Final Four for the first time since 1950.
It’s no doubt been a long wait for the Bears as they have advanced to the Elite Eight multiple times, including their most recent run in 2012. However, they have not won a regional final since 1950 and have not tasted championship glory since winning their only title in 1948.
For Arkansas, on the other hand, a valiant effort came up short as they could not overcome their rough start. Thus, they bow their heads in defeat but leave knowing they made a fantastic run through the tournament despite an unfortunate exit.
Baylor now looks ahead to its matchup on Saturday against the Midwest Regional Champion Houston Cougars, with the winner advancing to next Monday night’s National Championship Game.
Highlights from Baylor basketball’s win over Arkansas
Baylor’s hot start never wavered as they cashed in early on Arkansas mistakes and played their brand of basketball for the rest of the game. Macio Teague led the Bears with 22 points, while Davion Mitchell also joined in the fun with 12 points.
Davonte Davis led the Razorbacks with 14 points, while Moses Moody had 11 points in the losing effort. Despite their struggles, Arkansas did find a way to close the gap in an otherwise Baylor-dominated highlight reel.
Baylor didn’t make any buckets near the end of the first half thanks to an Arkansas run, yet, they steadied the ship and took control in the second half. Jared Butler certainly had something to do with a couple of makes from downtown.
3 takeaways from Baylor basketball’s win over Arkansas
3. Baylor didn’t play their best game against Arkansas and still won
Though the Houston Cougars played extremely well against Oregon State, they will have a tougher task against this Baylor Bears team. Scott Drew’s roster looked shaky at times, yet withstood Arkansas’ best effort and won. To get to the national title and win it, they will have to play better on both sides of the ball.
2. Arkansas ran into a team that capitalized at every opportunity.
Arkansas played up to their potential, but sometimes, the shots don’t fall. As a result, the journey ends. The NCAA Tournament is a time where consistency reigns supreme, and Arkansas failed in that regard. Also, getting behind didn’t help matters. It worked in their previous three games, but the fourth time was not the charm.
1. Baylor has an excellent chance to win the National Championship provided they clean up their game.
To win and not play their best game shows a level of resolve for the Baylor Bears. However, the journey is not over yet. If they want to win their first title since 1948, the Bears must correct their mistakes, especially considering the Cougars are a well-run machine and looking for respect. After that, a potential matchup with Gonzaga may loom.
One bad game can end the dream. Baylor has their work cut out for them. For now, they can enjoy the luxury of being one of the last four teams standing.
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