On Tuesday night, the Baylor Bears men's basketball team improved to 16-0 with an impressive win on the road against Kansas State. With the win, the Bears not only proved that they are more than legitimate Big 12 title contenders, but legitimate NCAA title contenders in 2012.
It's not just that No. 18 Kansas State is a quality opponent, but Manhattan is a difficult place for a road team to play as well. Baylor found themselves in holes to begin each half as well, but battled back. The Wildcats jumped out to a quick 15-7 lead in the first half, but Perry Jones III and the Bears didn't panic. K-State also started the second half out hot as well, taking a seven point lead just minutes into the second half, but again, Baylor didn't panic -- they battled back, and eventually won the game 77-75.
It's one thing to win at home, or to keep your composure at home, but to do it on the road, in a tough environment and against a ranked team is impressive -- and it's something that separates contenders from pretenders. With four road wins and three neutral site wins, to go along with an unblemished record, Baylor has certainly solidified themselves as title contenders in 2012.
The tests are going to continue for Baylor next week, as the Bears travel to Kansas to take on the No. 10 Jayhawks before playing host to ninth-ranked Missouri on the 21st. Both are exciting match ups, and both games will further serve as measuring sticks as to what we can expect from Baylor basketball this season.