West Virginia at Baylor
When: 4:00 PM ET, Saturday, February 28, 2015
Where: Ferrell Center, Waco, Texas
West Virginia has a shot at winning the Big 12 title, but a visit to Baylor on Saturday could be the type of contest to end that quest. The 19th-ranked Mountaineers are one game behind first-place Kansas – a team they already beat once and play again on March 3 – and need a road win against the Bears to keep the showdown in place. No. 20 Baylor is in fifth place in the Big 12 and coming off an impressive 79-70 road win against Iowa State on Wednesday.
The Bears have won three consecutive games and made a season-best 14 3-point baskets in the upset of the Cyclones. West Virginia also has won three straight contests after dispatching Texas 71-64 on Tuesday. The Mountaineers will need a better answer in terms of how to deal with Baylor forward Rico Gathers in the rematch after allowing him to have 17 points and 16 rebounds in the Bears’ 87-69 win at West Virginia on Feb. 7.TV:
4 p.m. ET, ESPNUABOUT WEST VIRGINIA (22-6, 10-5 Big 12):
Forward Devin Williams (11 points, team-best 8.2 rebounds) failed to reach double digits in four straight games before breaking out for 14 points – his most since scoring a season-best 20 against Baylor – in the victory over Texas. “He’s a man. He rebounded and scored in traffic, and he made free throws,” Mountaineers coach Bob Huggins told reporters. “He really passed the ball, and we got it to him in the middle of the floor and he collapsed on them and made a lot of good passes in the post." Guard Juwan Staten averages a team-best 14.5 points, and guard Jevon Carter leads the team in 3-pointers (37) and steals (50) while averaging 8.2 points.
ABOUT BAYLOR (21-7, 9-6):
Forward Taurean Prince continues to be on a roll as his 20 points against Iowa State marked his 12th consecutive double-figure outing. Prince averages a team-best 13.3 points and is followed by point guard Kenny Chery (11.5) and Gathers (11.1 points, 11.9 rebounds). The Bears have recorded 24 steals over the last two games, and four players have more than 30 – guard Lester Medford (39), Prince (38), Gathers (36) and Chery (34) – with forward Royce O’Neale (29) one off the pace. TIP-INS
1. The Bears have won five of the previous six meetings.
2. Staten had just six points in the first meeting with Baylor.
3. Baylor is 25-5 when Gathers scores in double digits.PREDICTION:
Baylor 72, West Virginia 66
Stats and Records