Waco, TX (SportsNetwork.com) - Naadir Tharpe scored 22 points to lead eighth- ranked Kansas to a 69-52 win over Baylor at Ferrell Center.
Andrew Wiggins added 14 points, seven rebounds, five assists and three steals and Perry Ellis finished with 14 points, 10 boards and two blocks for the Jayhawks (17-5, 8-1 Big 12), who bounced back from a loss to Texas on Saturday.
"There is that saying, 'defense does travel.' It didn't travel to Austin. Certainly, we have got to grow up and understand that on the road it is not as much about us playing really well as much as it is about making your opponent play poorly," said Kansas coach Bill Self. "We didn't do anything on Saturday to make Texas play poorly. I thought we defended and rebounded and got more 50-50 balls and things like that to give us a better chance tonight."
Cory Jefferson scored 14 points and Brady Heslip added 12 for the Bears (14-8, 2-7), losers in six of their last seven games.
"We were in striking position, three possessions or four possessions until really the last five minutes. Kansas is a really good team," said Baylor coach Scott Drew.
Baylor took a quick 5-0 lead right out of the gate, but Kansas used a 17-8 run to go up by four at the 8:49 mark of the first half. The Bears battled back and led 24-21, but the Jayhawks closed the opening session with a 14-6 burst, capped with Wiggins' buzzer-beater from well behind halfcourt, to go into the break leading 35-27.
It was the freshman sensation's first basket of the game.
"Well we ran that play for him at the end of the first half to get him going. He obviously wasn't plugged in offensively in the first half. Zones tend to do that to him at times. Second half he was more aggressive and got to the free throw line," Self said.
Baylor pulled within four, 42-38, on an Isaiah Austin jumper, but Kansas quickly pushed its spread to 12, 56-44, with 7:49 to go. Wiggins capped the flurry with back-to-back dunks before draining a 3-pointer from the right wing.
A Kenny Chery 3-pointer made it a nine-point game moments later, but Kansas managed to push its spread back to 16, 67-51, with 1:24 left and coasted to victory.
Kansas leads the all-time series 21-4, but is just 3-2 over its last five with the Bears ... The Jayhawks outrebounded Baylor 46-31 ... Wiggins is just 6- for-25 from the field over his last two games ... Baylor has never beaten ranked teams in consecutive games. The Bears are 0-7 when facing an ranked opponent the first game after defeating a ranked opponent ... Baylor had dropped four straight at home ... Baylor's bench outscored Kansas' reserves 14-10.