After nearly a week away, the No. 7 Texas Longhorns were back on the hardwood on Sunday and came away with a 72-62 win over Stanford.
Here are a few quick thoughts from the win.
This isn’t the same Texas team without Chris Beard. Not yet at least. Nearly a week after needing overtime to escape Rice, Texas again found themselves fighting to the end against a Stanford squad that entered two games under .500. It was to be expected that Beard’s absence would impact the Longhorns, and through two games without him, they often seem to be out of sync and can’t find a rhythm, they aren’t playing as crisp and decisive offensively or overwhelming teams defensively, and generally, they don’t seem to have a ton of confidence right now. At this point, they’re winning on talent alone, but that won’t be good enough in the coming weeks once Big 12 play gets underway, so they’ll need to find a way to get back to form considering Beard might not be back anytime soon, if ever.
Texas is going need more from Tyrese Hunter. He was just 3-11 for eight points on Sunday to mark his third consecutive subpar game. He’s now failed to crack double figures in three straight games, shooting 7-20 throughout that stretch, which simply isn’t good enough for Texas to be at their best. With Big 12 play less than two weeks away, the sooner Hunter can return to form the better, because Texas’ isn’t quite the same when he’s off.
Timmy Allen might be be fully back to himself. After struggling to find his role early in the season, Allen looks the part of the player he was for the Longhorns last season, sinking shots and stuffing the stat sheet. With his 15-point, four-rebound, five-assist effort in the win over Stanford, Allen has cracked double digits in four of the last five games and quickly re-emerged as a key figure for the Longhorns. That’s huge.
Marcus Carr is the guy for Texas. Between his notable return to form and Hunter’s struggles as of late, Carr has continued to be the big shot maker and taker for Texas, and he was yet again today. His pair of threes early in the second half gave Texas the cushion they needed to ultimately win, and he continued to come up with some key buckets throughout. Just another day at the office for the senior, who led with 17 points on 6-13 from the field.