Marcus Smart and Markel Brown finished a combined 8-38 from the floor and 1-11 from three, but Oklahoma State still managed to find a way to be up 14 on Baylor with about six minutes left.
That’s when Pierre Jackson finally woke up.
The diminutive point guard scored 20 of his 24 points after the break, hitting a pair of free throws to force overtime. Baylor took the early lead in the extra frame thanks to a pair of threes from Jackson, but Forte tied things up with a three of his own with a minute left, setting up a thrilling finish.
After Michael Cobbins blocked a shot from AJ Walton at one end, Brown took the loose ball the length of the court in about five seconds for the buzzer-beating layup.
The 69-67 win moves No. 22 Oklahoma State to 6-3 in the Big 12, putting them into a tie for third place in the league race.
But the more important note here involves Baylor.
The Bear’s comeback was impressive. When you’re down that much on the road to a ranked team and can force overtime, it’s notable. But it’s also notable when you’re down 14 points to a team that got an 8-38 shooting performance out of their two best players.
Jackson finished with 24 points, eight assists and 11 turnovers. We saw everything there is to see about Jackson in this game. He can hit big shots. He’s a nightmare to try and keep out of the paint. He’s a talented on-ball defender. And he can get into takeover mode too early and too often.
The problem is that he doesn’t have enough consistent help on the floor with him. Brady Heslip hasn’t hit a shot all season. Cory Jefferson and Isaiah Austin need Jackson to create for them. AJ Walton, Gary Franklin and LJ Rose? Meh.
Jackson’s not good enough to try and takeover games the way he does, but Baylor needs him to be the dominant ball-handler and playmaker.
That’s not a good combination.
You can find Rob on twitter @RobDauster.