Sports Take: MBB will pose threat next season

With the return of veterans like senior forward Flo Thamba and a strong incoming class headlined by five-star recruit guard Keyonte George, men's basketball is more than capable of finding success next season. Brittany Tankersley | Photo Editor

By Gio Gennero | Sports Writer

I know this current Baylor men’s basketball season didn’t pan out and the team never quite felt the same as the national championship squad, but don’t count them out for next season just yet. With the return of key players and incoming players, the Bears are looking like a potentially dangerous team.

Let’s not forget, Baylor won the Big 12 regular season title, earned a No. 1 seed in the tournament and still has reigning Big 12 Coach of the Year Scott Drew. Losing senior guard James Akinjo and freshman forward Kendall Brown is a big loss, but I believe we have the pieces to step up in their absence.

In Akinjo’s absence, guards junior Adam Flagler and sophomore LJ Cryer will have more opportunity to grow without the ball-dominant Akinjo. Freshman guard Langston Love will also be a great addition to the backcourt and will be a key role in a deep run.

Losing Brown and likely freshman Jeremy Sochan and senior Matthew Mayer as forwards is a big loss as they were all versatile players and matchup nightmares. However, with senior forward Flo Thamba announcing his return and junior forward Jonathan Tchamwa Tchatchoua likely to return to play next season, we will still have solid bigs holding down the paint. Don’t forget, we have a very solid incoming class, headlined by five-star recruit guard Keyonte George.

As of right now, I think there will be a solid mix of championship-tested players, hungry freshmen and great coaching. These things combined will definitely have Baylor contending for another Big 12 title and possibly a deep tournament run. If either Mayer or Sochan decides to return I believe we’ll be definite national title contenders, but if not I still see us shaking up the Big 12.

Also don’t forget, we were a couple points away from taking down the University of North Carolina in the NCAA Tournament. Not to mention we beat the 2022 National Champions University of Kansas by double-digits late in the regular season. Our team next season should be more than capable of finding success.