Baylor Hands Kansas a Third Straight Loss

Baylor beats Kansas | Image by Chris Jones/USA TODAY Sports

In a battle of the last two national champions, No.17 Baylor was victorious, taking down No.9 Kansas 75-69 at the Ferrell Center in Waco.

The loss is defending champion Kansas’ third in a row, with losses to now-No.5 Kansas State last week and No.11 TCU on Saturday. It is just the fourth three-game losing streak for the Jayhawks since coach Bill Self took over in 2003-04.

Meanwhile, Baylor’s victory gave the 2021 champion a Big 12-best five-game winning streak — a turnaround after opening conference play with its own three-game losing streak.

Kansas held the lead for only 52 seconds on Monday night, with a three-pointer from Jalen Wilson giving the Jayhawks a 46-45 advantage with 15:24 left to play.

The Bears responded with a Langston Love turnaround jump shot while being fouled to retake the lead. Love added the free throw to complete the three-point play that started a 12-3 spurt.

Love, a freshman guard who missed last season after tearing an ACL in a preseason scrimmage, capped the key Baylor (15-5, 5-3 Big 12) run with a three-pointer.

Still, Kansas (16-4, 5-3) never went away and eventually got its deficit back to as close as five with 1:18 left to play. But a critical offensive rebound by Baylor led to a trip to the line, where Jalen Bridges hit a pair of free throws to give his team a more comfortable cushion in the final seconds.


— LJ Cryer had 22 points to lead Baylor, with 19 of his points, including five three-pointers coming before halftime. Adam Flagler added 17 points, while Bridges and Love each had 11 for the Bears.

— Baylor is now 12-1 in its last 13 games against opponents ranked in the top 10 of the AP poll, tying the best 13-game span against top 10 teams by any team in the AP poll era. Against top-25 teams, the Bears are 25-8 over the past four seasons, which is the nation’s best mark.

— Freshman guard Gradey Dick had 24 points and Wilson 23 for the Jayhawks. Kevin McCullar Jr. posted 14 points and 12 rebounds, marking his fifth double-double this season.


— Baylor forced 15 Kansas turnovers and won the battle on the boards, out-rebounding the Jayhawks 35-33, including 17-8 on the offensive glass. The offensive boards translated to a 16-4 advantage in second-chance points for the Bears.

— Kansas had a more efficient night shooting the ball, making 46% of their shot attempts, to 37.1% for Baylor. But the Bears’ dominance on the offensive glass gave them 10 more shot attempts than Kansas.


— Coach Self said the Jayhawks are not in panic mode after losing three straight games, all to ranked Big 12 opponents.

“There is time to be reactive in a negative way if your team’s not doing well. This is not one of our times,” Self said. “We have gotten beat, and granted, we got beat [by] a team that was projected to win the league tonight, that’s really good. And they went through the same crap we’re going through right now.

“Our league is that good. It’s going to be a grind.”

— Veteran Baylor players praised the freshman Love, who came up clutch after Kansas took its only lead of the game.

“He’s ready to step up whenever his name is called,” Flagler, a senior, said of his fellow guard. “We weren’t surprised when he went out there and did what he did.”


— Both teams get a break from conference play and return to action on Saturday for the SEC/Big 12 Challenge. Baylor will host Arkansas, while Kansas will hit the road to face Kentucky, hoping to avoid its first four-game losing streak under Bill Self.

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