Waco, TX – The 12th-ranked Baylor Bears shoot for their 12 campaign as they entertain the conference action at the Ferrell Center in Waco.
Jackson State, which represents the Southwestern Athletic Conference, opened play on Friday against eighth-ranked Florida and was throttled by the Gators in a 99-59 final on the road as part of the Global Sports Shoot-Out at the O'Connell Center. The Tigers are coming off a season in which they posted a 12-6 record in conference to tie for second place in the standings but just 17-15 overall.
As for the Bears, they too are now onto their second game of the season after they beat up on Texas Southern (another SWAC program) by a score of 77-57 two nights ago. Outside of meetings against San Diego State and BYU, Baylor doesn't get truly tested until just a few days before Christmas when it tangles with West Virginia during the 11th Annual Las Vegas Classic.
With respect to the all-time series between these two schools on the hardwood, the Bears have won all four previous meetings, including a 63-49 final last season at home in Waco.
The Tigers were behind at halftime against Florida by a score of 59-23 on Friday night, but at least the visitors didn't completely throw in the towel when it appeared bleak. Jackson State shot only 9-of-26 from the field in the first half and didn't make a single trip to the free-throw line in the frame, although the squad did eventually convert 18-of-21 at the stripe in the second half. Jenirro Bush was responsible for a team-high 20 points as he made good on 6-of-9 shots behind the three-point line, but he also tied for the team high with six turnovers as the unit was charged with 24 miscues and credited with just six assists. Kelsey Howard contributed another 14 points, but his 3- of-12 shooting from the floor was a truer indication of just how much the Tigers were struggling, as they connected on only 34.0 percent of their field goal attempts overall.
Even without Perry Jones, the Big 12 Preseason Player of the Year who is scheduled to sit out the first five games of this season stemming from an NCAA suspension for accepting improper benefits before he got to Baylor, the Bears had little trouble taking care of the Texas Southern in the season opener. Quincy Miller opened some eyes as he led four players in double figures with his 17 points in 27 minutes of action, while Anthony Jones registered a double-double for the group with 11 points and a team-best 12 rebounds. Quincy Acy accounted for 11 points and seven rebounds, while reserve Cory Jefferson settled into the paint as he too registered a double-double with 10 points and 10 boards in just 19 minutes of action. Baylor easily won the battle of the boards by a 46-29 margin and forced the visitors into 18 turnovers. There were a few issues that the Bears have to address, namely having 17 turnovers of their own and shooting only 19-of-29 at the free-throw line.