What does this young team have to do to catch a break? The Longhorns mounted an impressive comeback, erasing an early 15-point deficit -- 12 at the half -- to go ahead 64-60 with 2:20 remaining, but the Jayhawks finished strong and pulled out a tough 69-66 road victory. Congratulations to Kansas on the victory -- Bill Self called it the team's best win of the season and the Jayhawks were resilient themselves in closing out the game strong -- but man, this Texas team just cannot catch a break. The game was officiated like it was played in Lawrence, with Taylor and Robinson getting the star treatment, and what few touch fouls that were called all going against Texas.
Bah. Kansas is clearly the superior team, and we're not going to beat them at Allen Fieldhouse, but it was tough to see us fall short today, when Kansas was allowed to manhandle us defensively with impunity. Texas was whistled for 23 fouls, to Kansas' 19. Awesome. Because our margin for error is large enough as it is.
Regardless, ultimately the loss falls on us, and Kansas deserves credit for the win. They executed down the stretch, and we fell short for the same reasons as we have all month. We were once again close to a breakthrough win, but we have ourselves to blame for falling short. On the bright side, it's clear that if we can avoid falling behind early we're very much capable of beating just about anybody.
So it goes with such a young team, and like Wiggo, I was really proud of our effort, even as disappointed as I am that we couldn't pull out the win. Our frontcourt delivered a hell of a game, and it was the forgettable play from our guards in the first half (McClellan excepted) that really cost us the game.
Once more, all together now: we're getting closer. But we're also about to start running out of time. To avoid a situation where we'll have no margin for error down the stretch, Texas needs to take care of business on Tuesday night versus Iowa State and then win at least one of two at Baylor and versus Missouri. Going 2-1 over the next three still puts us in a solid position heading into February, while 1-2 puts us behind the eight ball. Losing all three makes us a huge longshot to get into the NCAA Tournament field.