Baylor opened the game with makes on each of its first 8 field goal attempts, Texas missed its first 12 shots from the floor, and the Bears put the Longhorns in an early 12-0 deficit en route to an 83-60 win in Waco. The first four minutes of the contest pretty much stood as a summary of what was to come over the course of the full game: Baylor executed well on offense and shot the lights out (12-22 from deep), while Texas suffered a miserable night against a packed in Baylor zone, neither able to hit open shots from outside (5-26 3PFG) nor attack the defense to get to the line (just 3 FT attempts all game).
It's a road loss, and one you probably expect and can generally live with, but with the loss the Horns fall to 3-5 in conference play and the upcoming four games become a critical stretch if this team is going to turn things around and surge to a strong finish. Texas returns home next week to face Oklahoma State, then travels to Kansas State before returning to Austin for home match ups versus Tech and TCU. Winning all three at home is essential, and stealing one in Manhattan would provide a badly needed boost.
I'll be back to diagram a few things later tonight or tomorrow, but a few game notes right now:
* Isaiah Taylor showed up to play but he needs help, and we don't want him scoring 16 points on 18 shots. Unfortunately, with Holland playing passively on offense, this team is a guard short. We badly need someone to step up in the backcourt, and I think Barnes has to try either to push Holland to attack the defense on the bounce or try to get more out of Yancy off the bench.
* Part of the problem is that Felix, while providing some help offensively, continues to do a lousy job contesting shooters over screens. He's also just small, and our adjustment to trap the ball handler with our big came too late.
* Connor Lammert was dreadful tonight. Love the guy, love his game, but he's not playing good basketball right now.
* I liked a lot of the looks we got on offense tonight, but we just shot the ball miserably. It's tough on the road, but 5-26 from three is JV level bad and we're going to see more and more of what Baylor did tonight with that packed in zone.
* Speaking of which, a tip of the cap to Scott Drew: he got the win on the back of a solid defensive game plan. Yeah, it was that kind of night.