Luther Burleson coached the initial basketball staff at Baylor in 1907 also doubling as the football coach. In Baylor’s second season of basketball afterward cross-town rival TCU started their schedule that the Bears defeated twice during the 1908–09 season. Ralph Glaze’s (1911–1914) .788 winning percentage ranks at the best all time in school history. Ralph Wolf (1927–1941) direct Baylor to its first SWC Championship in 1932 after living and overcoming one of the first great tragedies in college athletics in his first season as coach.
See also: List of mishaps involving sports teams
On January 22, 1927, Coach Ralph Wolf’s Baylor Basketball group was traveling by bus to play with the University of Texas. As 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 occupants failed to hear the noise of the train whistle and ringing bell. The driver caught sight of the train at the last moment and tried to steer away, however, the Sunshine Special crashed into the bus near 60 mph tearing off the roof and right side.
The Immortal Ten Memorial Ten Baylor students and basketball players have been killed by the impact.  One participant, James Clyde”Abe” Kelly, driven his buddy, Weir Washamout the window at the bus only minutes before the impact, rescue 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 part 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 assist where needed simply to locate his son one of the dead.
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 rest of the 1927 season was canceled. The catastrophe had reverberations over the whole state and country and contributed to the construction of the first railway overpass in Texas in which the event happened at Round Rock. Buses were later needed to come to a complete stop and open the door at all rail crossings to listen for trains. The Immortal Ten narrative has been commemorated annually since 1927 initially in Chapel services then afterwards at the Freshman Mass Meeting throughout Homecoming Week. In 2007, the occasion was memorialized in bronze to the Baylor campus in Traditions Plaza.
On the 90th anniversary of this catastrophe, 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 committed to the”Immortal Bridge,” which arcs over the railroad tracks where the incident occurred. 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, the spirit squads, and Baylor’s Golden Wave Band.
Post World War II success Baylor men’s teams won five conference championships at the former Southwest Conference (1932, 1946, 1948, 1949*, 1950*; * discussed shared name ). The Bears reached the NCAA Tournament for the first time in 1946, also reached the Final Four in 1948 and 1950. Bill Henderson’s 1948 team advanced to play the Kentucky Wildcats for the NCAA championship, but fell 58–42 to Adolph Rupp’s first national championship team. The team advanced to the NCAA Final Four in 1950 beneath Henderson dropping to the Bradley Braves 68–66. Bill Menefee (1962–1973) will lead the Bears into a nationwide ranking in 1969 but failed to make the postseason that year. Menefee was the only coach 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 tournament team are the first NCAA tournament appearance for the app 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 group, was murdered 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, restricted itself to 7 scholarships for two years and imposed a post-season ban for a year. Additionally, the NCAA further punished the group by initiating a non-conference ban for the 2005–2006 year and expanding the probationary period during the faculty would have limited recruiting statements.
Decade Long Resurgence
The 2005 Bears were hindered by just using 7 scholarship players and listed only one win in conference playwith. In spite of those challenges, head coach Scott Drew was able to put together a 2005 signing class ranked No. 7 nationally by HoopScoop.
The basketball program experienced a resurgence under coach Scott Drew having an NCAA Tournament appearance in 2008 for the first time in 20 years using a 9–7 conference record and the team’s first national ranking in 39 decades. The January 23, 2008 116–110 5OT win over Texas A&M at College Station officially became the longest game in Big 12 history. The 2008–09 team was rated early in the season but stumbled to a 5–11 conference finish before heating 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 recorded the program’s first postseason victory since 1950 in its initial round NIT victory over the Georgetown Hoyas at Waco.
The 2008–09 team went on to advance to the NIT Final where they fell to Penn State. The 2009–10 squad was rated in both polls and pulled off the biggest road win in school history across the then #6 Texas Longhorns at Austin 80–77 on Jan. 30th. The Bears closed out the season with a Big 12 era best 11–5 album 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 calendar year. However, the group finished the regular season 23–6 and tied for 2nd in the Big 12 standings. After a two –1 record 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 in First Round actions and then defeated #11 seed Old Dominion 76–68 in Second Round drama to advance to the Sweet 16 hosted in 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 held at Reliant Stadium and the Bears’ opponent was the #1 seed Duke Blue Devils, the final #1 seed standing in the NCAA tournament following the other three #1 seeds (Kansas, Syracuse, and Kentucky) were all 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 finish the magical run to the Elite Eight. It had been the best season in the Scott Drew age as defined by convention standing, overall ranking, wins, and NCAA tournament wins. The Bears finished the year 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, and climbed to 9th in the polls prior to falling to Gonzaga in a neutral court in Dallas. The group ended 18–13 overall 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 this series versus rated Texas A&M. After freshman star Perry Jones III was suspended from the NCAA for six games, the Bears proceeded to lose their first-round match of the Big 12 Championship from Oklahoma.
The 2012 season saw another historic campaign for the Bears as they followed the 2011 season with another successful seminar run that saw the Bears win 30 games and make it to the Big 12 championship title game. The Bears were selected for the NCAA tournament and made it all the way into the Elite Eight, which ended at a loss to eventual national champion Kentucky.
The 2013 year witnesses another winning effort for the Bears since they followed the 2012 Elite Eight season with another successful seminar run which saw the squirrels sweep both TCU and Texas Tech while just dropping one game to UT. The bears started out with a pre-season standing of #19 in the country. The Bears finish conference play .500 and were chosen for the NIT championship. The Bears made it all the way to the Closing, which finished in a win over Iowa, winning the tournament in front of a large audience in Madison Square Garden and promising that the 2013 NIT Title.
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