What to Watch For: Baylor vs. Tennessee

By Ben York, PhoenixMercury.com
Posted: Dec. 18, 2012

What: The Baylor Bears host the Tennessee Lady Vols

When: December 18, 2012 at 6pm (8pm EST)

TV: ESPN

2012-2013 Background, Baylor



8-1/0-0 Big 12
Preseason Rank: #1/1
2011-12 Record: 40-0
Conf. Rec./Finish: 18-0/1st
Starters Back/Lost: 5/0
Letterwinners Back/Lost: 8/3
Newcomers: 5

2012-2013 Background, Tennessee



7-1/0-0 SEC
Preseason Rank: #20/16
2011-12 Record: 27-9
Conf. Rec./Finish: 12-4/2nd
Starters Back/Lost: 0/5
Letterwinners Back/Lost: 6/5
Newcomers: 5

History

  • This marks only the seventh meeting between Tennessee and Baylor and the fourth regular-season game between the programs.

  • The series began on March 28, 2004, when the teams met in the Midwest Regional semifinal in Norman, Okla., and UT escaped with a 71-69 victory.

  • Tennessee enters the contest with a 2-4 all-time record vs. Baylor.

  • Baylor has claimed the last four meetings in the series, taking two from Tennessee in 2011-12.

  • Last year’s BU wins over UT included a 76-67 regular-season triumph in Knoxville on Nov. 27, 2011, and a 77-58 NCAA Elite Eight game victory in Des Moines, Iowa, on March 26, 2012.
  • Things to Know

  • Preseason National Player of the Year Brittney Griner, a 6-8 senior post, leads BU in scoring and rebounding with 21.6 points and 7.3 boards per game. Griner produced her second straight double-double with her 22-point/10-rebound performance in Baylor’s 94-56 victory vs. Oral Roberts (ORU). She currently has 2,618 career points and 1,032 career rebounds.

  • Tennessee enters the contest on a seven-game winning streak after dropping the opener to Chattanooga, 80-71, on Nov. 9.

  • Holly Warlick faces off vs. a top-five ranked squad for the first time as head coach.

  • Baylor has strung together six straight victories since falling to Stanford, 71-69, at the Rainbow Wahine Classic in Honolulu on Nov. 16.

  • The Lady Vols have defeated four ranked foes this season, including No. 22/20 Georgia Tech (71-54), No. 23/23 Miami (79-67), No. 22/RV North Carolina (102-57) and No. 18/20 Texas (94-75). The UNC game was at home, while the other three were road contests.

  • Baylor is 2-1 this season vs. ranked foes, defeating No. 6/7 Kentucky (85-51) at home, falling to No. 4/4 Stanford (71-69) in Honolulu at the Rainbow Wahine Classic and beating No. 5/5 Notre Dame on the road (73-61).

  • Baylor is 2-1 vs. ranked opponents this season and five players are averaging 9.3 or more points per game vs. rated foes: Brittney Griner (24.3), Odyssey Sims (12.3), Destiny Williams (10.7), Jordan Madden (10.0) and Brooklyn Pope (9.3).

  • Baylor’s 2012-13 roster features six McDonald’s All-Americans. Seniors Brittney Griner and Destiny Williams were honored in 2009, while Brooklyn Pope was a 2008 selection, junior Odyssey Sims was a 2010 recipient and Alexis Prince and Niya Johnson were selected in 2012.

  • Seniors Brittney Griner, Kimetria Hayden, Jordan Madden and Destiny Williams and redshirt junior Mariah Chandler are on track to graduate this year.

  • Tennessee has performed well in its four previous games vs. top 25 teams this season.

  • Not only are the Lady Vols 4-0 vs. Miami, Georgia Tech, North Carolina and Texas, they outscored those opponents by an average of 86.5 to 63.2, sporting a scoring margin of +23.3.

  • UT actually has held ranked opponents to a scoring average (63.2) that is just slightly more than its total defensive season average (62.4).