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The Year of the Bear
10:35 P.M. SUNDAY, MAY 27, 2012
Hello Baylor Bears,

I hope you are enjoying the Year of the Bear as much as the athletics department. It is a very special time to be a Baylor Bear and the year is far from finished.

It is hard to know when to start with all of the extraordinary success that Baylor has enjoyed this year. One of the accomplishments that makes us most grateful is the fact that all 19 intercollegiate teams reached postseason competition for the first time in school history. This achievement is fulfillment of Imperative X of Baylor 2012 which called upon Athletics to "build with integrity a winning athletic tradition in all sports."

Congratulations are in order for Baylor's football (10), men's (30) and women's basketball (40) and baseball (44 and counting) teams for combining to set an all-time NCAA Division I record for most wins in a season with 124. The previous national record was held by the University of Texas when the Longhorns won 123 games in 2003-04.

Baylor is currently ranked 28th in the Learfield NACDA Director's Cup standings through the end of the winter season. Based upon Baylor's traditional strength in scoring coming in the spring sports, there is a strong possibility that we will have our highest finish ever eclipsing the 2004-05 ranking of 25th.

The Big 12 made significant news with the announcement of a partnership with the SEC to hold an annual bowl game featuring the champions of each league following the expiration of the current BCS contract in 2014. This game will provide a tremendous showcase for our conference and its football programs. Moreover, it will provide a strong platform and leverage for the Big 12 and SEC entering the upcoming discussions regarding the creation of a four-team postseason playoff. Also, we anticipate an announcement in the near future regarding an extended television agreement for the Conference.

Finally, the Bear Foundation fund drive has just concluded and we have achieved a 9th consecutive record year. Thank you to our Bear Foundation volunteers, the Bear Foundation staff and the more than 3,000 donors who faithfully support student-athlete scholarships! If for some reason you have not joined the BBF, please do so today. There is more information available on baylorbears.com.

We have number of very good questions this week from our fans, so let's find out what people want to talk about:

Ian,

Congratulations and what a time to be a Baylor Bear! My question is concerning the new stadium. We are about 10 years or so from needing a new facility for basketball. We are planning a new track facility. Has there been any thought given towards a facility that could house all three--football, track, and basketball? Of course, the cost would be considerably more, but not more than all three separately. That would give us a facility that would allow BU to host all conference and NCAA events.

Thanks for all you are doing!

Gary M. Brown, '71
Colleyville, Texas

Gary,

Thank you for the question. The nature of each of these sports is such that they require separate facilities for student-athletes and fans. We are working very hard on both the development and design sides of the on-campus football stadium project. If sufficient funding is secured by the summer, the Board of Regents could consider approving construction of the project enabling it to be completed for the 2014 season. We are also moving forward with fundraising and design for an on-campus track with two possible sites.

Ian


Ian;

Congratulations to the women's tennis and softball teams for performing so well despite major injury problems and to the men's tennis and men's golf teams for performing so well despite their youth! And, go baseball and women's golf who are still playing!!

Is it my imagination, or did every team eligible to reach NCAA postseason play this academic year do so? If so, has Baylor ever accomplished that feat before?

Keith A. Rowley
Henderson, NV

Keith,

Thank you for the question and comment. You are correct that all 19 Baylor teams have reached postseason competition for the first time in school history. This is a marvelous accomplishment that speaks to the outstanding work of our coaches, staff and student-athletes. Moreover, God has shown Baylor Athletics great favor this year!

Ian


Ian;

Will there be CD's of some of this year's games in football and women's basketball?

I am interested in seeing the Texas and Oklahoma football games again. And in women's basketball, I'd like to relive the Final Four games.

Thanks for the great job you do.

Ramiro A. Pena, MD
Holland, Texas

Ramiro,

Thank you for the question. Regrettably, Baylor is not in a position to develop and market a DVD featuring various games due to the fact that we do not own the broadcast rights to these events. However, we have made arrangements to partner with a publisher and the Waco Tribune-Herald on a book commemorating the Year of the Bear. This will be a must purchase for all of Baylor Nation!

If there are specific games you are seeking, contact Nick Joos on our staff and he may be able to make a DVD for you to relive the games you are seeking.

Ian


Ian;

Why is there a # 7 painted behind home plate at the Baylor Ballpark?

Ginny Sanchez
Waco, Texas

Ginny,

Baylor baseball was led by an outstanding man and head coach named Mickey Sullivan from 1974-1995 who won 649 career games. Mickey wore #7 and his memorial service was held at Baylor Ballpark following his passing in March. So, the #7 behind home plate is to honor Mickey's memory.

Ian


Ian;

Several ladies basketball teams (Texas A & M, Oklahoma, and Maryland (among others) received preferential treatment regarding their homecourt advantage for their first two NCAA games.

Is this fair? I feel it is not? What can be done to correct this situation?

Harold Dodson
Waco, Texas

Harold,

Thank you for the questions about NCAA host first and second round sites. The NCAA women's basketball committee determines first and second round host sites in advance of the championship.

As you mention, several teams were able to play on their home court. Baylor was fortunate to be a first and second round host site in 2011 and will do so again next season. Once teams advance to the Sweet 16, games are played on neutral sites (not on-campus buildings).

Ian


Ian;

Will Baylor ever be able to host a bowl game? With there being so many bowl games every year seems like Baylor could host a bowl game. Something like the Waco Bowl.

Baylor would be a good place to host a new bowl game. What would have to happen for Baylor to host a bowl game?

Steve Wright
Salt Lake City, Utah

Steve,

Baylor and Waco have the potential to host a bowl game. Upon the completion of the on-campus football stadium, we would have a facility that would be worthy of hosting such a game. Moreover, we have a great location in Central Texas where football is king. This is an idea that is worth exploring in the future.

Ian