Big 12 trophies are becoming commonplace at Baylor, especially of late. Baylor became the first school in Big 12 Conference history to win football, men’s basketball and women’s basketball conference titles in the same academic year.
For the 12th consecutive season, Baylor’s women’s basketball team won the Big 12 Conference regular-season title. Baylor defeated ninth-ranked Iowa State, 87-62, to clinch at least a share of the title and then dominated Texas Tech, 82-57, to win the league outright.
All-America senior forward NaLyssa Smith was named Big 12 Player of the Year for the second consecutive season. She earned first-team all-conference honors and was named to the Big 12 All-Defensive Team. Guard Jordan Lewis, a graduate transfer from the University of Alabama, also was a first-team all-conference selection and was named Big 12 Newcomer of the Year. Sophomore guard Sarah Andrews was a second-team All-Big 12 pick, while junior guard Ja’Mee Asberry and senior center Queen Egbo were honorable mention all-conference.
First-year Baylor head coach Nicki Collen was a semifinalist for the Naismith National Coach of the Year. Smith was a finalist for the Naismith Trophy, which honors the nation’s top player.
Baylor defeated Oklahoma State and Oklahoma in the Big 12 Tournament before falling to Texas in the event’s championship game. Smith was named to the all-tournament team after averaging 24.3 points per game in the tournament, including 37 points against Oklahoma.
The Bears were the No. 2 seed in the Wichita Regional in the NCAA Women’s Tournament, and the Ferrell Center hosted first- and second-round games. It was Baylor’s 20th NCAA appearance and marked the 11th consecutive tournament in which the Bears were a No. 1 or No. 2 seed.
Baylor’s men’s basketball team overcame multiply midseason injuries to share the Big 12 regular-season title with Kansas. The Bears won their final five games of the regular season, including an 80-70 victory over then-No. 5 Kansas and a 75-68 victory over Iowa State in the finale to match the Jayhawks atop the Big 12 standings.
Head coach Scott Drew was named Big 12 Coach of the Year for the third consecutive year. Junior forward Jonathan Tchamwa Tchatchoua, who sustained a season-ending knee injury Feb. 12, was selected as Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year, sharing the honor with two others. Freshman forward Jeremy Sochan earned the Big 12 Sixth Man Award.
All-America junior guard James Akinjo was a first-team All-Big 12 selection, while junior guard Adam Flagler was a second-team all-conference pick. Sochan and senior forward Matthew Mayer were honorable mention All-Big 12. Tchamwa Tchatchoua was named to the Big 12 All-Defensive Team, Akinjo was named to the Big 12 All-Newcomer Team, and Kendall Brown joined Sochan on the Big 12 All-Freshman Team.
Despite falling to Oklahoma in the Big 12 Tournament quarterfinals, the Bears were the No. 4 overall seed in the NCAA Men’s Tournament as the top seed in the East Regional. It was Baylor’s 14th all-time appearance, 11th since 2008 and seventh in the last eight tournaments. The Bears were a No. 1 seed for the second straight year.