Baylor Bears Receive Massive Boost for 2021-22 Season Following Matthew Mayer’s Return

Published 06/22/2021, 5:30 PM EDT


At the start of the 2020-21 season, the Baylor Bears were among the top teams. Despite never being the favorites, they upset the Gonzaga Bulldogs to win the NCAA tournament. But unfortunately their hopes of repeating received a huge hit following departures of key players.

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So with the team lacking leaders, Matthew Mayer has stepped up at the perfect time. The 6’9 junior has decided to return to Baylor for his senior season and has withdrawn from NBA draft. Mayer played in every game for the Bears last season, and has been a consistent player off the bench for them.

He may have averaged just 8.1 points per game last season, but he is important for the Bears locker room. Flo Thamba and Mayer are the only seniors from last year’s roster on the team. James Akinjo is another senior on the team, but he comes in as a transfer.

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So having Mayer on the team will help the transfers to settle in as well as the new incoming freshmen. Baylor is a team who is strong on culture, so having players like Mayer on the team is vital for Scott Drew’s men. On the court, Mayer could finally enter the starting lineup after playing off the bench in his first three seasons.

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Do the Baylor Bears have enough firepower to remain among the top teams in the 2021-22 season?

Entering the 2021-22 season, Baylor is losing Davion Mitchell, Jared Butler, Mark Vital, MaCio Teague, and Mark Paterson. Mitchell, Butler, Vital, and Teague were four of the top five scorers for the Bears last season. And they were also equally effective on the defensive end. So that creates a huge void on both ends for Baylor.

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To replace them, the Bears have brought in James Akinjo, who was a prolific scorer in the Pac 12 conference. Along with his scoring, Akinjo also provides with his playmaking. They also have three promising freshman in Kendall Brown, Langston Love, and Jeremy Sochan.

While these new players are impressive, they aren’t as good as the departing players. So Baylor is a lot weaker than before, which means they will not be able to defend their NCAA tournament title. But coach Scott Drew will be keen on proving doubters wrong, and lead his team to another remarkable campaign.

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Aaron Mathew

1666 articles

Aaron Mathew is a sports analyst at EssentiallySports. A graduate in Mass Media from Xavier’s College, Aaron has been a part of EssentiallySports since May 2020 where he covers both NBA and NCAA basketball news, and has also covered NBA 2K. In the past, Aaron has worked at the Sports Desk of Mumbai Mirror.

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