Now that I am nearly over the loss of the Rangers in the World Series, I am ready to move on.  Oh, hold it, I kind of moved on Monday night as instead of watching the Rangers loose, I went to a Baylor Lady Bears Basketball game.  This is a exhibition game for the Baylor Lady Bears.  This means that the stats and results do not count toward NCAA stats and rankings. These games are ‘tune up’ games.  The Baylor Lady Bears were definitely tuning on Monday.  They played St Edwards University from Austin Texas.  This is a D III school; hence the exhibition game.

The Baylor Lady Bears come in nationally rank #2 in all polls, behind UConn, who has won (don’t quote me) 79 straight games.  One of those most recent victories was in the Final Four against the Baylor Lady Bears.  What surprised me somehwat is that there were not many new faces on the Baylor Lady Bears bench. Missing was their top recruit, Odyssey Sims.  No one seemed to know, (of my peeps who keep up with the scoop there) where she was or the story behind her MIA.  Sims tore an ACL in mid senior year of high school, so perhaps she is redshirted. That left two new faces on the bench that I saw. Brooklyn Pope, a transfer from C Vivien’s Rutgers, and Coach Mulkey’s very own daughter.

As one would expect, the Baylor Lady Bears had no trouble against an extremely out manned, yet scrappy St Edwards. The 89-46 final score was slightly less margin than last year’s 89-43 against the same St Edward’s scrappiness. With this trend, the Baylor Lady Bears would loose sometime in 2024….Brittney Griner had 28 points and 12 rebounds.  Encouraging signs this year is that she has seemed to develop a 6-8 ft. jump shot, hitting with accuracy.  This is good news, as it will make her harder to defend. Ashley Fields, a junior got the start.  Interesting choice.  Not particularly fast, with only decent shot potential, she seemed an odd choice.  Must have worked her butt off in practice.  She answered with 14 points and I think 8 rebounds. She is kind of a blue collar player.  OH yeah, her sister plays for St Edwards.

The impressive one, in my opinion, was Pope.  She ended with 9 points and 15 rebounds.  As is the case in most years for the Baylor Lady Bears, there has always been one player that scares me, me and the rat in the alley.  Pope is that person.  She stands about 6′ 2″. But she has a vertical jump that impresses.  Her 9 points were a result of the one weakness she showed, that is missing short shots. If she had hit 1/2 of the short shots she had, she would have been high in double figures scoring.  This chick never smiles.  She acted pissed that Fields got the start. She is quick. If she can be harnessed by hard ass Mulkey, this one could be a great player. I think she has two years left…..we will see.  She got into issues with C Vivien at Rutgers, who also scares me….a truly ‘take no shit’ coach.  We will see how attitude plays into this story line.

Absent for the most part as well was the three point game. This is absolutely crucial if the Baylor Lady Bears are to live up to their #2 billing. It must be present if they have any hope of winning at UConn the second real game of the year. Senior Melissa Jones was 1 of around 5 at three point range.  She needs to improve.  The only other three pointers (2) were drained by Mulkey’s daughter…she was 2-3 from the three point line.  No reaction from Mulkey on either.  The dynamics of coaching one’s own daughter must be interesting. Two players did not get into the game, two who played a  lot last year. One name I cannot for the life of me remember…but the other was Mariah Chandler. Not sure what the story is on these two.  Both did well last year. The Mulkey dog house can have thick walls. Not a good place to be.

It is very difficult to gage where they are after this game. With all of the jaded stats in favor of the Baylor Lady Bears, you just cannot draw conclusions against a St Edwards.  UConn looms quickly. One area that was not good stat wise was turn overs.  Way too many.  They had 11 at half time, and fortunately ended up with less than twenty.  But that is way too many to play at a ranked level. Baylor once again shot less than 45% from the field.  This too must improve.

Total attendance for an exhibition game was just short of 6,000. Quite impressive.  I guess everyone is ready for Baylor Basketball.

We look forward to the next game…..depending upon what Friday brings…..

PS…this related post below is not mine…..shame on them

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