Here are a few quick thoughts from Texas’ second loss of the season.
Texas fought. If you’re searching for a positive from this one, that’s the biggest. Despite getting completely outclassed in the first half and trailing by 18 points at the break, Texas found a way to start throwing punches of its own and actually make this a game. This one felt over at halftime, and even long before that, but the Longhorns responded like they wanted to fight to win, and that’s worth something — just not a win.
Sometimes, you just can’t miss. That luxury was in Kansas State’s favor on Tuesday — 61 percent from the field (36-59), 56.5 percent from the perimeter (13-23), and 93.9 percent from the free throw line (31-33) — that will do it way more often than not. And even when Texas starting fighting back, KSU always had a response and hit a big shot of found a momentum-killing bucket at the rim. On most nights, 103 points is enough to win the game, just not when your opponent comfortably cracks triple digits with an NBA score.
Texas’ lack of a defensive stopper continues to hurt them. Even with all 39 points Kansas State enjoyed from the perimeter, Texas certainly didn’t make it hard for the Wildcats to take early anything they wanted at the rim. Texas doesn’t have that rim protector it’s so often had in the past, and it’s hurt them several times this season. This was just the latest example, and it won’t be the last.
Marcus Carr, Tyrese Hunter, and Jabari Rice came to play. The guard trio combined for 72 points and hit nearly every big bucket for Texas during their comeback. Again, on most nights, that’s more than enough to lead the Longhorns to a win, so that’s something they’ll like to build upon going forward with how significant these three are to Texas’ success.