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College Hoops Tip-Off Marathon: Baylor Lady Bears vs. Kentucky Wildcats on ESPN2

The Baylor Lady Bears will host the Kentucky Wildcats at 6 p.m. EDT on ESPN2 as the lone women's basketball game included in the College Hoops Tip-Off Marathon today. Click here for the full schedule of games for the day.

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A'dia Mathies, Kentucky fall flat against Baylor

Even if a team were to come into Waco, Texas knowing exactly how to stop the Baylor Lady Bears, the challenge is actually executing that game plan.

And the bottom line is that the Kentucky Wildcats simply did not execute and ultimately got routed 85-51 in a game that actually managed to look worse than the final score suggests because Brittney Griner was able to take a rest well before the game was over.

Greg Alan Edwards of SB Nation's A Sea of Blue had harsh words for both the Wildcats team and their star A'dia Mathies in his post-mortem.

Unfortunately for UK, A'dia disappeared early in the game and was never a factor before fouling out with 5:20 left in the second half. None of her 12 points ever came at an opportune time, and defensively she looked more like the freshman A'dia Mathies than the Senior leader of the UK Hoops squad...A'dia simply does not have the luxury of taking a night off. And tonight, she really never showed up. Her assist came in the second half when the game was already over and her night was almost done.You have to credit Baylor's Sims. She played Mathies like a harp.


Although Baylor might really just be that good, it was not at all a good showing for Kentucky or their star player who some consider to be a top WNBA draft prospect.


Guess the Game Outcome for Baylor vs. Kentucky

Got predictions for today's game between the Baylor Lady Bears and Kentucky Wildcats (at 6 p.m. EDT on ESPN2) as part of the 2012 College Basketball Tip-Off Marathon? SB Nation's Kentucky site wants to hear them.


Who might be able to beat the Baylor Lady Bears?

As part of a preview for the Baylor Lady Bears' 2012-13 season, Jonathan Tjarks of SB Nation Dallas and I had an e-conversation about whether this year's team could be better than last year's undefeated team, how great an accomplishment it would be to go undefeated in consecutive seasons, and who might beat them.

And without saying they'll definitely go undefeated, it's hard to figure out who might stop their run as I told Jonathan.

I would imagine the game that most people have circled in that regard is their December 5 meeting with Notre Dame in South Bend - Skylar Diggins is something of a superstar in the women's basketball world and winning in South Bend is no easy task. But having lost Natalie Novosel and Devereaux Peters to the WNBA as well as gritty point guard Brittany Mallory it's not clear if they'll have enough to take down Baylor.

Other teams to watch for: Kentucky has the athletes to pressure Baylor, though Odyssey Sims is like a one-woman press break. They play Connecticut in Storrs, which is a test for any team though that would depend a lot on the play of UConn center Stefanie Dolson and - again - UConn's ability to stop Sims. The sleeper team - and maybe not for those that watched closely - is Iowa State. They played Baylor extremely well early in conference play last season simply by spreading the floor with the range that their posts have and hitting a ton of threes. While one would suspect that Baylor is ready for that this season - and given that they won the game, they really found a counter for it in the second half of that very game - the familiarity of Big 12 opponents like Iowa State is probably the most likely formula for an upset.

As Geno Auriemma has said, Baylor is not only a team with all the tools to win but also a team that doesn't have any really obvious vulnerabilities - when you have a 6-foot-8 center in the middle and a dynamic point guard at the top, it can be hard to either stop them or score against them. So I'm not saying Iowa State will definitely be the team to beat them - it would take them putting together two halves of hot 3-point shooting and an off day from Baylor to make that happen.

But the larger point is that as we've seen in the past couple of seasons - with both Baylor and UConn - a conference opponent's familiarity with their tendencies might have the best chance at beating them.

For the full Q&A, visit SBN Dallas.

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