February 28, 2007

Raiders, Bears in Lubbock Tonight

Baylor comes calling on Texas Tech in Lubbock, hoping for a repeat performance of their matchup on January 13 when the Bears scored a 73-70 upset. Since then, Baylor has added two more wins to their conference total and sit at three wins overall. Texas Tech sits at an even .500 after fourteen games and needs to win out to make the Big 12 Money Tournament a non-factor in their NCAA selection.

The Baylor Bears
Aaron Bruce is not 100% yet on an ankle he injured earlier this season, but he looks much better recently. Against Texas A&M he scored 15 points in 27 minutes, which is a lot than he's been able to do lately. The Bears put on a furious, 56-point second half at A&M but came up ten points short of a monster road win. In the first game against Tech, Bruce scored 24 points in 36 minutes of play.

Curtis Jerrells is the MVP of the Baylor team at this point. He leads the team in minutes played at 32, is second in scoring at 12.2 points per game, gets 3.8 assists per game and 4.2 rebounds. He shoots .424 from the field and .333 from the arc, where about 46% of his shots come from. In the first game against Tech, he had 23 points on 9-of-13 shooting and went 4-of-6 from the arc.

Improving forward Kevin Rogers had 13 points and 14 rebounds against the Raiders in the first game. He did foul out in 35 minutes of play and committed six turnovers. On the season he averages a team-leading 12.4 points per game and 6.8 rebounds per game, shoots .563 from the field, and .782 from the stripe. He is not as aggressive inside as his size may indicate and as such he has only attempted 55 free throws on the season. He prefers to lay the ball in rather than initiate contact and try to draw a foul. His midrange game is a weakness and keeping him 10 feet away from the basket will help Tech tremendously.

Those three players - Bruce, Jerrells, and Rogers - accounted for 60 of Baylor's 73 points. No other Bear scored more than four points and only one, Henry Dugat, managed that many. On the season, Dugat is averaging 11.1 points per game and 4.3 rebounds.

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