UH-Baylor rundown: What to know about the Bears ahead of Final Four
INDIANAPOLIS − The Houston men’s basketball and Baylor Bears will meet for the first of two Final Four matchups on Saturday inside of Lucas Oil Stadium.
The Cougars (28-3) defeated the Oregon State Beavers on Monday, 67-61, to advance to its first Final Four since 1984 and the Phi Slama Jama days.
Sophomore guard Marcus Sasser led the team in scoring against the Beavers with 20 points, which included making five 3-pointers. Junior guard Quentin Grimes had 18 points, and senior guard DeJon Jarreau filled up the stat sheet with 10 points, eight rebounds and eight assists.
Senior forward Justin Gorham tracked down 10 rebounds, five of which were offensive boards. Senior forward Fabian White Jr. had seven rebounds, including five of his own that were offensive rebounds.
The Cougars finished with a 19-7 advantage over the Beavers on the offensive glass.
A look at the Bears
Baylor (26-2) defeated Arkansas 81-72 in its Elite Eight matchup to advance to Saturday’s game against UH.
Senior guard MaCio Teague led the Bears in scoring with 22 points and also added five rebounds. The other two guards for Baylor also had a strong showing as junior guard Davian Mitchell had 12 points and six assists, and junior guard Jared Butler finished with 14 points and five assists.
For the season, the Bears are led by Butler, who averages 16.5 points per game. Mitchell averages 14 points and 5.3 assists per contest. Teague averages 15.9 points per matchup.
“They’re probably the best team we’ve played so far,” UH head coach Kelvin Sampson said on Thursday morning. “It’s not just their explosive offense, but their defense is equally as good. They average 21 points a game off other team’s mistakes. Their defense is outstanding. They have great individual talent. Their athleticism is next level.”
As a team, Baylor ranks atop the best teams in the nation when it comes to offense. The Bears are sixth in the country in scoring offense, and they are also No. 1 when it comes to 3-point field-goal percentage.
That explosiveness on offense along with Baylor’s athleticism has Sampson gearing up for a tough battle, but he is not preparing his team any different from how they have all season long.
“(We’re) just keeping our composure, and just doing the same things that have gotten us this far,” Jarreau said on Thursday.
That includes emphasizing taking care of the ball and crashing the boards, the guard added.
“I feel like if we do those things, and not try to do too much, we’ll put ourselves in a good position to win the game,” Jarreau said.
How to watch
Saturday’s matchup between UH and Baylor will tipoff at 4:14 p.m. and air on CBS and also be on KPRC 950 AM radio.
For more on The Cougar’s coverage of UH’s run in the NCAA Tournament, click here.