Luther Burleson coached the first basketball team at Baylor in 1907 also doubling as the football coach. In Baylor’s second season of basketball then cross-town rival TCU began their program which the Bears defeated twice during the 1908–09 season. Ralph Glaze’s (1911–1914) .788 winning percentage ranks at the top all time in school history. Ralph Wolf (1927–1941) lead Baylor to its very first SWC Championship in 1932 after living and beating among the first excellent tragedies in college sports in his first season as coach.
See also: List of accidents involving sports teams
On January 22, 1927, Coach Ralph Wolf’s Baylor Basketball team was travelling 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 paths 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 at near 60 miles off ripping off the roof and right side.
The Immortal Ten Museum Ten Baylor students and basketball players have been murdered by the effect.  One participant, James Clyde”Abe” Kelly, driven his buddy, Weir Washam, out the window at the bus just minutes before the impact, saving Washam’s lifetime but costing Kelly his own. The bodies of Kelly and Robert Hailey were discovered horrifically stretched across the cow-catcher on the front of the train, with arms locked around each other and Kelly overlooking a leg. Ivy Foster Sr. of Taylor, Texas, had heard of the crash and rushed to the train station in Taylor to meet with the train and help where needed simply to find his son among the deceased.
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 tragedy had reverberations over the whole state and country and led to the construction of the first railway overpass in Texas where the event occurred at Round Rock. Buses were later required to come to a complete stop and open the door at all railway crossings to listen for trains. The Immortal Ten narrative has been commemorated each year since 1927 initially in headquarters providers then later at the Freshman Mass Meeting during Homecoming Week. In 2007, the occasion was memorialized in bronze on the Baylor campus in Traditions Plaza.
On the 90th anniversary of the tragedy, January 22, 2017, the City of Round Rock held a memorial event to recall those who had been murdered in the train-bus collision. In the event, the city dedicated to the”Immortal Bridge,” that arcs over the railroad tracks where the accident occurred. Green lampposts, green-and-gold paint and other markers honor the 10 students who were murdered there. The event was open to the general public, and attendees comprised Baylor administrators and student leaders, that 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 progressed to play the Kentucky Wildcats for the NCAA championship, but fell 58–42 into Adolph Rupp’s first national championship team. The group again advanced into the NCAA Final Four in 1950 beneath Henderson dropping to the Bradley Braves 68–66. Bill Menefee (1962–1973) would lead the Bears to 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 record of over .500, and might later serve as Baylor’s athletic director from the 1980s. Gene Iba’s 1988 NCAA tournament team are the first NCAA championship appearance for the program in 38 decades.
Main article: Baylor University basketball scandal
The men’s basketball program was plagued by a scandal in 2003. Patrick Dennehy, a player for the team, 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 press characterizing Dennehy as a drug dealer. The school put itself on probation, limited itself to 7 scholarships for two years and enforced a post-season ban for a year. Additionally, the NCAA further punished the team by initiating a non-conference ban to the 2005–2006 season and expanding the probationary period through which the school would have restricted recruiting privileges.
Decade Long Resurgence
The 2005 Bears were hindered by just using 7 scholarship players and listed only one win in conference play. Regardless of those challenges, head coach Scott Drew managed to put together a 2005 signing class ranked No. 7 nationally by HoopScoop.
The basketball program undergone a resurgence under coach Scott Drew with an NCAA Tournament appearance in 2008 for the first time in 20 years with a 9–7 summit record and the group’s first national ranking in 39 years. The January 23, 2008 116–110 5OT triumph over Texas A&M in College Station officially became the greatest game in Big 12 history. The 2008–09 team again was ranked early in the season but stumbled to a 5–11 conference finish before heating up in the Big 12 Tournament beating both Kansas and Texas en route to the championship game versus Missouri, and lost by a score of 73–60. The 2008–2009 team recorded the program’s first postseason victory since 1950 in its first round NIT victory over the Georgetown Hoyas at Waco.
The 2008–09 team went on to progress to the NIT Final where they fell to Penn State. The 2009–10 squad was rated in both polls and pulled off the largest road win in school history over the then #6 Texas Longhorns at Austin 80–77 on Jan. 30th. The Bears closed out the season with a Big 12 age finest 11–5 album and #1 in the Big 12 championship.
The 2009–10 team was picked to finish 10th in the Big 12 in the Big 12 Coaches Poll as a result of graduation of several key players from the preceding calendar year. However, the group ended 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 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, 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 in the half. The Elite Eight was held at Reliant Stadium and the Bears’ opponent was the #1 seed Duke Blue Devils, the last #1 seed standing at the NCAA tournament following another three #1 seeds (Kansas, Syracuse, and Kentucky) were all 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 had been the best season in the Scott Drew era as characterized by conference standing, overall standing, wins, and NCAA championship wins. The Bears finished the season ranked #10 in the final ESPN/Coaches Poll–the maximum ranking in program history at that moment.
The 2010–11 group started the season ranked 14th (according to the AP Preseason poll). The Bears began 7–0, also rose to 9th from the polls prior to falling to Gonzaga at a neutral court in Dallas. The group finished 18–13 overall and seven –9 in league play. The highlight of this 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 lose their first-round game of the Big 12 Tournament against Oklahoma.
The 2012 season saw another historic effort for the Bears since they followed up the 2011 year with another successful conference run which saw the Bears win 30 games and make it into the Big 12 championship title match. 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 year witnesses another winning effort for the Bears since they followed the 2012 Elite Eight season with another successful conference run which saw the squirrels sweep both TCU and Texas Tech while only dropping one game to UT. The bears started out with a pre-season standing of #19 in the nation. The Bears finish conference play at .500 and have been selected for the NIT championship. The Bears made it all the way into the Final, which finished in a triumph over Iowa, winning the championship in front of a sizable audience in Madison Square Garden and promising that the 2013 NIT Title.