Luther Burleson coached the initial basketball staff in Baylor in 1907 also doubling as the soccer coach. In Baylor’s second season of basketball then cross-town rival TCU began their program that the Bears defeated twice during the 1908–09 season. Ralph Glaze’s (1911–1914) .788 winning percentage rankings in the best all time in school history. Ralph Wolf (1927–1941) direct Baylor to its first SWC Championship in 1932 after living and beating among the first great tragedies in college athletics 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 with the University of Texas. Since the bus passed through Round Rock, Texas, it approached railroad tracks across the south side of the company district on a drizzly, cloudy day. As the bus crossed the paths the natives failed to listen to the noise of the train whistle and ringing bell. The driver caught sight of the train at the last minute and tried to maneuver away, but 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 killed by the impact.  One player, James Clyde”Abe” Kelly, pushed his friend, Weir Washam, out the window at the bus just minutes before the effect, saving Washam’s lifetime but costing Kelly his very own. The bodies of Kelly and Robert Hailey were discovered horrifically stretched throughout the cow-catcher on the front part of the train, with arms wrapped around each other and Kelly missing 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 only to find 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 remainder of the 1927 season was canceled. The catastrophe had reverberations over the entire nation and country and led to the construction of the first railway overpass at Texas where the event happened at Round Rock. Buses were later needed to come to a full stop and open the door at all rail crossings to listen to trains. The Immortal Ten narrative has been commemorated annually since 1927 at first in Chapel services then later at the Freshman Mass Meeting during Homecoming Week. In 2007, the event was also memorialized in bronze to the Baylor campus in Traditions Plaza.
About the 90th anniversary of the catastrophe, January 22, 2017, the City of Round Rock held a memorial event to remember those who had been killed in the train-bus collision. At the event, the city dedicated the”Immortal Bridge,” that 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, the spirit squads, and Baylor’s Golden Wave Band.
Post World War II success Baylor men’s teams won five conference championships in 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 dropped 58–42 to Adolph Rupp’s first national championship team. The group advanced to the NCAA Final Four in 1950 under Henderson losing to the Bradley Braves 68–66. Bill Menefee (1962–1973) would lead the Bears into a nationwide position in 1969 but failed to make the postseason that year. Menefee was the only trainer during the next 50 years to really have a career record of over .500, and would later serve as Baylor’s athletic director in the 1980s. Gene Iba’s 1988 NCAA tournament team would be the very 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 player for the group, was killed by former teammate Carlton Dotson; then-coach Dave Bliss was 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 press characterizing Dennehy as a drug dealer. The school put itself on probation, restricted itself to seven scholarships for two decades and imposed a post-season ban for one year. Furthermore, the NCAA further punished the team by initiating a non-conference ban for the 2005–2006 season and extending the probationary period through which the school would have restricted recruiting privileges.
Decade Long Resurgence
The 2005 Bears were hindered by only having 7 scholarship players and listed just one win in conference play. Regardless of these challenges, head coach Scott Drew was able to gather a 2005 signing class ranked No. 7 nationally by HoopScoop.
The basketball program experienced a resurgence under coach Scott Drew with an NCAA Tournament appearance in 2008 for the first time in 20 years using a 9–7 summit record and the team’s first national ranking in 39 years. The January 23, 2008 116–110 5OT triumph over Texas A&M at College Station formally became the longest game in Big 12 history. The 2008–09 team was rated early in the summer but stumbled to a 5–11 summit 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 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 largest road win in school history across the then #6 Texas Longhorns in Austin 80–77 on Jan. 30th. The Bears closed out the season with a Big 12 era best 11–5 record and #3 seed at the Big 12 tournament.
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 key players from the previous year. However, the group ended the regular season 23–6 and tied for 2nd in the Big 12 standings. After a 2–1 album in the Big 12 tournament, 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 actions and then conquered #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, which had defeated #2 seed Villanova the prior week ahead of the Sweet 16. The Bears won handily over the Gaels, 72–49, after leading 47–19 in the half. The Elite Eight was held in Reliant Stadium and the Bears’ competition was the #1 seed Duke Blue Devils, the final #1 seed status at the NCAA tournament after another three #1 seeds (Kansas, Syracuse, and Kentucky) were defeated by lower seeded teams. In front of a very pro-Baylor audience of over 47,000, the Bears were defeated by the Duke Blue Devils, 78–71, to finish the magic run to the Elite Eight. It was the best season from the Scott Drew age as defined by convention standing, overall standing, wins, and NCAA tournament wins. The Bears finished the year ranked #10 from the last ESPN/Coaches Poll–the maximum ranking in program history at that time.
The 2010–11 team started the season ranked 14th (according to the AP Preseason survey ). The Bears began 7–0, also rose to 9th in the polls prior to falling to Gonzaga in a neutral court in Dallas. The team ended 18–13 total and seven –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 ranked Texas A&M. After freshman star Perry Jones III was suspended by 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 campaign for the Bears since they followed up 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 chosen 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 season witnesses another winning campaign for the Bears since they followed up the 2012 Elite Eight season with another successful seminar run which saw the Bears sweep both TCU and Texas Tech while only dropping one game to UT. The bears started out using a pre-season ranking of #19 in the country. The Boys finish conference play .500 and were selected for the NIT tournament. The Bears made it all of the way to the Closing, which ended in a win over Iowa, winning the tournament in front of a sizable audience in Madison Square Garden and claiming the 2013 NIT Title.
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