IRVING (October 10, 2013) -- For the third consecutive season, Baylor men’s basketball has been picked to finish in the top three in the Big 12 Conference preseason poll. The Bears received 63 points and were picked to finish third in 2013-14 by the league’s coaches.
Head coach Scott Drew’s team has been tabbed to finish in the league’s top four in five of the last six seasons, and the Bears went to the Elite Eight in the lone year they weren’t picked to finish among the league’s top four teams.
BU was picked second in 2012-13, third in 2011-12 and fourth in 2010-11. Baylor went 23-14 and won the program’s first national tournament championship with a five-game run through the NIT last season. The Bears return seven letterwinners from that team, including preseason All-Big 12 picks Isaiah Austin and Cory Jefferson, along with two-year starter Brady Heslip.
Kansas and Oklahoma State tied for the top spot in the 2013-14 preseason poll, with each team receiving five first-place votes and totaling 77 points. Baylor was third with 63 points, followed by Iowa State in fourth with 56 points and Kansas State and Oklahoma in a tie for fifth place with 43 points. West Virginia was seventh with 35 points, followed by Texas in eighth with 30 points and Texas Tech and TCU with 14 and 12 points, respectively.
With 63 points, the Bears were picked to finish third by every coach in the league. Coaches aren’t allowed to vote for their own teams.
Big 12 Conference Men’s Basketball Media Day is scheduled for Oct. 22 at Sprint Center in Kansas City, site of the 2014 Phillips 66 Men’s Basketball Championship.
Baylor opens the 2013-14 season on Nov. 8 when it takes on Colorado at Dallas’ American Airlines Center. Tipoff time for that game, which is part of a tripleheader in the Tip-Off Showcase, has not yet been announced.
2013-14 BIG 12 PRESEASON POLL
t1. Kansas (5) – 77
t1. Oklahoma State (5) – 77
3. Baylor – 63
4. Iowa State – 56
t5. Kansas State – 43
t5. Oklahoma – 43
7. West Virginia – 35
8. Texas – 30
9. Texas Tech – 14
10. TCU – 12