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KU Predictions: vs Baylor Bears

Our writing staff gets together to predict the outcome of our first conference game of the season.

The conference opener.  Kansas starts the defense of their 11 straight Big 12 titles with a home tilt against the Baylor Bears.  Will we see Kansas extend their home winning streak? Or do the Bears have what it takes to spoil a matchup between two top 3 teams on Monday night?

Fizzle406: KU usually handles whatever Baylor can throw at them in the field house. Not worried about this one. Kansas 72, Baylor 59

mikeville: Baylor is gonna be better than a lot of the teams we’ve played already this year, but I’m just not impressed.  It’s definitely not a “show up to win” game, but if KU plays anywhere near to what they’re capable of, these Bears don’t stand much of a chance.  Look for KU to make a statement early in conference play. Kansas 85, Baylor 66

Winmore: Will this be the year the Big 12 finally proves itself something more than just Kansas and nine also rans? On paper, with five ranked teams and a possible one-v-two matchup looming on Big Monday, it would appear voters think so. Unfortunately, for the rest of the conference, Kansas faces these early tests in the Phog, where the Jayhawks have not lost a conference game since February 2, 2013 (Okie State – Marcus Smart backflip game). At Kansas, Bill Self is 13-3 versus Scott Drew’s Baylor Bears. Baylor has been game in a chunk of those contests, but usually comes undone by their incoherent offensive strategy. In that regard, the Bears loss of senior guard, Kenny Chery, to graduation last spring hurts them. With Chery no longer running point the Bears offense has slipped right back into the streetball fest that has defined Drew’s tenure. With Baylor’s strict adherence to zone defense, and the way this year’s KU team can splash threes, this game could get ugly. My respect for Rico Gathers is the only thing keeping me from calling for an outright blowout in this one. Kid’s a beast who wipes the glass as a rebounding machine. Could give KU’s unsteady stable of big men trouble today. Kansas 80, Baylor 66.

David: It's been a while now since Kansas faced anything more than a decent opponent. They've developed a habit of sleepwalking through portions of games, especially early, and I think we may see more of that today. For that reason, I think Baylor stays in the game, but ultimately will have too much trouble keeping Kansas from scoring. Kansas 73, Baylor 65

dnoll5: For some reason, this game has me a little worried.  Maybe it’s because I’ve been out of commission for a while and haven’t gotten a chance to watch the team for a few weeks, or maybe because it’s because Baylor is the best team Kansas has played in a while.  Either way, it doesn’t have me worried enough to pick the upset.  Rico Gathers will be a difficult test for the KU rotation of big men, and it will be interesting to see whose “light” turns on amongst the newbies.  If it happens today for either Brag or Diallo or both, Kansas will be in good shape for the future. Kansas 87, Baylor 72.

misterbrain: The last time I thought Kansas might have some problems in their game, they blew out San Diego State with ease. This time, I fully expect Kansas to put on a show in the home conference opener. Kansas 92, Baylor 79.