Welcome back to Stock Up, Stock Down. After a week of not writing this column because there was no basketball, we're back because basketball is back.
Let's take a look at some of the storylines this week around the state of Texas.
Stock Down: Baylor
Baylor lost to Kansas State this week, something that never happens. And when I say never, I'm only slightly exaggerating.
Before the Wildcats won on Sunday, Baylor had won the last 36 meetings. Yes, that's right. THIRTY. SIX.
The last win for K-State was back in 2004, when Baylor lost 85-65 in Manhattan. That was...a long time ago.
Kansas State appears to be better this year than it's been in awhile, sitting at 11-2 right now. Ayoka Lee is averaging 24.4 points per game, plus 11.0 rebounds and 3.8 blocks. With Queen Egbo in foul trouble and playing just 18 minutes, Baylor's lack of depth up front was an issue.
Which is a bigger issue than just this game. Baylor is a team that always seems to be stout in the frontcourt, but it just isn't right now. I'm a Caitlin Bickle fan, but when she's the only backup big that you trust enough to play in the main rotation then...well, that's an issue. The depth concerns are real for Baylor, even if it'll almost always have the best player on the floor in NaLyssa Smith.
Stock Up: SMU
I went on the Texas 24 podcast last week and got to talk a little about how much SMU confuses me. The team can win some games by a lot, then can lose some games by a lot. What's the real Mustangs?
I'm not sure we have an answer for that yet, but the team just won a road game against a Big 12 team by 26. Sure, that team was TCU, a school that isn't among the elite teams in the conference, but the Horned Frogs did beat Texas A&M earlier this year.
In the win over TCU, Kayla White scored 21 points, while Jasmine Smith added 18 points and 11 assists.
And the Mustang won this game without Sydne Wiggins. And Amber Bacon has played just three games this season.
SMU looks a lot different than the team that canceled its season early last year. I'm still fairly confused about the direction of this team and how good it can be, but this was a good win.
Stock Up: Texas
Seven wins in a row for the Longhorns, who moved up to ninth in this week's poll. Per Across The Timeline, it's the first time back in the top 10 for the team since the Nov. 26, 2018 poll.
The team opened Big 12 play against Oklahoma State, winning 62-51 behind a pair of 14-point performances from Joanne Allen-Taylor and Aubrey Warren.
Something I liked to see about that game: how many minutes Kyndall Hunter got. She started! And while her shot was off as she went 1-for-7 from the floor, it's good to see Hunter getting minutes. I'm a big fan of her game.
Stock Up: UTSA
The Roadrunners were never going to be "good," but something I wanted to see in Karen Aston's first season was strides.
Well, she's already doubled the team's win total from last year. And won a conference game already, beating UAB 68-60.
Jadyn Pimental had 21 point in the win, going 8-for-25 from the floor. The Lamar transfer has seen some big disparities in her playing time this season, but she's scored 20-plus points in three of her last five games.
I was worried Aston was going to struggle to get good players to San Antonio after how the team has looked in recent years. But she's brought in some good transfer and has given this program something it was lacking: direction.
Stock Up: Abilene Christian
I like to say that ACU is a team that I never understand until conference play, because it usually plays a fairly light non-conference schedule.
But conference play is here and the Wildcats are 2-0, with wins over Utah State and Dixie State. In the 18-point lead over Dixie State, Jamie Bonnarens scored 20 points and grabbed 11 boards, while Sarah Griswold added 10 points. The team pulled down 44 rebounds, with 16 of them offensive. Generating extra looks: seems good.
I was fairly low on the Wildcats preseason, but I'm just about ready to admit I was wrong.