Luther Burleson coached the initial basketball team at Baylor in 1907 also doubling as the soccer coach. In Baylor’s second season of basketball afterward cross-town rival TCU began their schedule that the Bears defeated twice during the 1908—09 season. Ralph Glaze’s (1911—1914) .788 winning percentage ranks at the top all time in college history. Ralph Wolf (1927—1941) lead Baylor to its first SWC Championship in 1932 after surviving and beating one of the first great tragedies in college sports in his first season as coach.
See also: List of accidents involving sports teams
On January 22, 1927, Coach Ralph Wolf’s Baylor Basketball group was travelling by bus to play the University of Texas. Since the bus passed through Round Rock, Texas, it approached railroad tracks across the south side of the business district on a drizzly, cloudy day. As the bus crossed the tracks the natives failed to listen to the noise of the train whistle and ringing bell. The motorist caught sight of the train at the last minute and tried to maneuver clear of however, the Sunshine Special crashed into the bus at near 60 miles off ripping off the roof and side.
The Immortal Ten Memorial Ten Baylor students and basketball players were murdered by the impact.  One player, James Clyde»Abe» Kelly, pushed his buddy, Weir Washam, out the window of the bus only minutes before the effect, saving Washam’s life but costing Kelly his own. The bodies of Kelly and Robert Hailey were found horrifically stretched across the cow-catcher on the front of the train, with arms wrapped around each other and Kelly overlooking a leg. Ivy Foster Sr. of Taylor, Texas, had heard of the accident and rushed to the train station in Taylor to meet with the train and help where needed simply to find his son among the deceased.
The deceased were Jack Castellaw, Sam Dillow, Merle Dudley, L.R. «Ivey» Foster Jr., Robert «Bob» Hailey, James Clyde «Abe» Kelly, Willis Murrary, James «Jim» Walker, and William Winchester.
The remainder of the 1927 season was canceled. The tragedy had reverberations over the entire state and country and contributed to the building of the first railway overpass in Texas in which the event occurred at Round Rock. Buses were later required to return to a full stop and open the door at all railway crossings to listen for trains. The Immortal Ten narrative was commemorated each year since 1927 at first in headquarters providers then later at the Freshman Mass Meeting throughout Homecoming Week. In 2007, the occasion was memorialized in bronze to the Baylor campus at Traditions Plaza.
About the 90th anniversary of this tragedy, January 22, 2017, the City of Round Rock held a memorial event to remember those who were murdered in the train-bus collision. In the event, the city dedicated the»Immortal Bridge,» which arcs over the railroad tracks where the incident happened. Green lampposts, green-and-gold paint and other markings honor the 10 students who were killed there. The event was open to the public, and attendees comprised Baylor administrators and student leaders, that the spirit squads, and Baylor’s Golden Wave Band.
Post World War II victory Baylor men’s teams won five conference championships at the former Southwest Conference (1932, 1946, 1948, 1949*, 1950*; * denotes shared title). The Bears reached the NCAA Tournament for the first time in 1946, and reached the Final Four in 1948 and 1950. Bill Henderson’s 1948 team advanced to play the Kentucky Wildcats for the NCAA championship, but dropped 58—42 into Adolph Rupp’s first national championship team. The group advanced to the NCAA Final Four in 1950 beneath Henderson dropping to the Bradley Braves 68—66. Bill Menefee (1962—1973) would lead the Bears to a national position in 1969 but failed to make the postseason that year. Menefee was the only trainer over the next 50 years to have a career listing of over .500, and would later serve as Baylor’s athletic director in the 1980s. Gene Iba’s 1988 NCAA championship team would be the first NCAA tournament appearance for the program in 38 years.
Main article: Baylor University basketball scandal
The men’s basketball program was plagued by a scandal in 2003. Patrick Dennehy, a participant for the team, was killed by former teammate Carlton Dotson; then-coach Dave Bliss had been forced to resign amidst allegations that he had violated NCAA rules by making financial payments to four players and that he made improper statements to the media characterizing Dennehy as a drug dealer. The school put itself on probation, limited itself to 7 scholarships for two decades and imposed a post-season ban for a year. Furthermore, the NCAA further penalized the team by initiating a non-conference ban for the 2005—2006 year and expanding the probationary period during which the school would have restricted recruiting statements.
Decade Long Resurgence
The 2005 Bears were hindered by just using 7 scholarship players and recorded just one win in conference play. Regardless of these challenges, head coach Scott Drew managed to gather a 2005 signing class ranked No. 7 nationally by HoopScoop.
The basketball program undergone a resurgence under coach Scott Drew having an NCAA Tournament appearance in 2008 for the first time in 20 years with a 9—seven summit record and the team’s first national standing in 39 years. The January 23, 2008 116—110 5OT triumph over Texas A&M in College Station officially became the greatest game in Big 12 history. The 2008—09 team was rated early in the summer but stumbled on a 5—11 conference finish before heating up in the Big 12 Tournament beating both Kansas and Texas en route to the championship game versus Missouri, also lost by a score of 73—60. The 2008—2009 group listed the program’s first postseason victory since 1950 in its first round NIT victory within the Georgetown Hoyas in Waco.
The 2008—09 team went on to advance to the NIT Final in which they fell to Penn State. The 2009—10 squad was again ranked in both surveys and pulled off the biggest road win in school history over the then #6 Texas Longhorns in Austin 80—77 on Jan. 30th. The Bears closed out the season with a Big 12 age best 11—5 record and #3 seed in the Big 12 championship.
The 2009—10 team was picked to finish 10th in the Big 12 in the Big 12 Coaches Poll due to the graduation of several important players in the previous year. However, the group ended the regular season 23—6 and tied for 2nd in the Big 12 standings. After a two —1 album in the Big 12 championship, the Bears were rewarded with a #3 seed in the South Region of the NCAA tournament. The Bears defeated #14 seed Sam Houston State 68—59 at First Round action and then defeated #11 seed Old Dominion 76—68 in Second Round play to advance to the Sweet 16 hosted at Reliant Stadium in Houston. The Bear’s Sweet 16 match-up was 10 seed Saint Mary’s, that had defeated #2 seed Villanova the previous week ahead of the Sweet 16. The Bears won handily over the Gaels, 72—49, after leading 47—19 at the half. The Elite Eight was also held at Reliant Stadium and the Bears’ competition was the #1 seed Duke Blue Devils, the last #1 seed standing at the NCAA tournament after the other three #1 seeds (Kansas, Syracuse, and Kentucky) were defeated by lower seeded teams. In front of a very pro-Baylor crowd of over 47,000, the Bears were defeated by the Duke Blue Devils, 78—71, to end the magic run to the Elite Eight. It was the best season from the Scott Drew age as defined by conference standing, overall standing, wins, and NCAA championship wins. The Bears finished the season ranked #10 from the final ESPN/Coaches Poll—the highest ranking in program history at that moment.
The 2010—11 team started the season ranked 14th (according to this AP Preseason survey ). The Bears began 7—0, also rose to 9th in the polls before falling to Gonzaga in a neutral court in Dallas. The team ended 18—13 total and 7—9 in league playwith. The highlight of the season was Lacedarius Dunn becoming the Big 12’s all-time top scorer, and a sweep of the series versus rated Texas A&M. After freshman star Perry Jones III was suspended from the NCAA for six matches, the Bears proceeded to shed their first-round game of the Big 12 Championship from Oklahoma.
The 2012 season saw another historic effort for the Bears as they followed the 2011 year with another successful conference run that saw the Bears win 30 games and make it into the Big 12 tournament title game. The Bears were selected for the NCAA tournament and made it all the way into the Elite Eight, which ended in a loss to eventual national champion Kentucky.
The 2013 season witnesses another winning effort for the Bears as they followed the 2012 Elite Eight season with another successful seminar run that saw the squirrels sweep both TCU and Texas Tech while only dropping one match to UT. The bears started out using a pre-season ranking of 19 in the nation. The Bears finish conference play .500 and were chosen for the NIT championship. The Bears made it all of the way into the Closing, which finished in a triumph over Iowa, winning the championship in front of a sizable audience in Madison Square Garden and promising that the 2013 NIT Title.
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