Blog Entry

All hail mighty Texas; Horns maul the Tigers

Posted on: January 29, 2011 11:51 pm
Edited on: January 29, 2011 11:51 pm
Posted by Matt Norlander

We'll get to the wrap-up of today's crazy happenings in a little bit.

Before that, though, another post dedicated to Texas, the team that didn't fall prey to an upset on a day positively littered with them.

You need no further evidence than to look at what the Longhorns did to a good, fast-paced Missouri team tonight. Entering the game, the Tigers' previous 10 point totals were such: 87, 75, 89, 77, 76, 98, 81, 97, 75 and ONE HUNDRED AND SIXTEEN. But tonight? A wimpy 58

Seems everything's smaller in Texas.

The Longhorns won by 13 in a game that was one of the most anticipated of the day. Just didn't turn out that way. Those locked into games tonight around the country found themselves more involved in Pittsburgh-Rutgers and West Virginia-Cincinnati than the underwhelming television product that was No. 11 Missouri vs. No. 7 Texas. Silly Saturday.

Dogus Balbay (right, defending Michael Dixon's shot) and the Texas D held Missouri to .85 points per possession tonight. Once again, Rick Barnes' team made its opponent march on/near that season-average points-allowed line, which is at .84 for the year. And this was with seven steals and only one blocked shot, yet 15 forced turnovers. Just some ridiculous D in Austin.

It's now getting to the point where people believe Texas is in 1-seed territory. That's hard to argue.

Do you consider 18-3 Texas on the same level as undefeated Ohio State and one-loss Kansas and Duke? You probably should start.

Missouri's a team capable of making the Elite Eight, and they were completely ineffective tonight. I'm not sure how Barnes has managed to coach this young team into this spot, but it keeps climbing higher and higher.

Category: NCAAB
Tags: Missouri, Texas

Since: Sep 12, 2006
Posted on: January 31, 2011 8:46 am

All hail mighty Texas; Horns maul the Tigers

I know Texas has improved since mid-December, but suddenly that last second loss my Tarheels had to Texas looks pretty damn good!  I could tell from that game that the Longhorns had the talent, and they have enough experience to help negate some of the young and inexperienced starters.

Also, I love the fact that Joseph and Thompson are Canadian.  Love to see any and all Canadian basketball players making an impact in the NCAA/NBA, as they've been few and far between. Glad to see the Grassroots Canada program is starting to yield results, and hopefully soon enough Canada can be back competing strong on the international stage like they were when Steve Nash was playing for the national program!

Since: Dec 9, 2008
Posted on: January 31, 2011 6:22 am

All hail mighty Texas; Horns maul the Tigers

The difference between this Texas team and last years is leadership. James never really showed the discipline or composure to lead his team throughout conference play and ultimately the tournament. Pittman and Mason? Forget it. Varez Ward never played last year because of an injury he received early in non conference play and Bradley was a little too quiet to lead the team. Williams didn't play. Who does that leave? It leaves Jordan Hamilton, J'Covan Brown, Dogus Balbay, Gary Johnson and incoming freshman Triston Thompson and Cory Joseph. Before the year started this team looked like another one of Barnes "solid" basketball teams. You know the kind. The team that goes maybe 10-6 in conference play. A decent Big 12 tourney that includes most likely a loss to KU or some other top notch Big 12 team and sweet sixteen exit. Now all of the sudden we are looking at a possible Big 12 champion and a potential final four team sparked by... defense? When you look at the players you don't so much think how much more talented they are than past Big 12 teams. Not even close. But I see discipline. I see chemistry. I see consistency. Something most of the past longhorn teams either lacked or didn't have enough of. I know it's still early in conference play so I won't crown these guys just yet. But I think when you break down the top 6 players of this team you start to realize why they are having such success. They have the prominent scorer in Jordan Hamilton. A year ago this guy was so inconsistent Texas fans almost didn't want him to have the ball. It's hard to believe a year later he's the go to guy. And to think he was supposed to be a one and done player. He could be rotting on some NBA roster right now. Instead he's just improving his draft stock and helping Texas race to the top of college basketball. He's also leading the little longhorn roster in rebounds. You have the two freshman. Cory Joseph the ball handler and Triston Thompson the rangy foward. You have Brown. The guy Barnes lost confidence in a year now helping the team to victories like the performance against KU. But I think the unsung leaders from this roster are the teams seniors Gary Johnson and Dogus Balbay. When Johnson was a freshman it looked like he wouldn't have a very good career when it was learned that he had a heart condition. But he came in his freshman year and has been an absolute monster for the longhorns. He is the defintion of a "garbage" player. He plays great defense. Gets those tough rebounds and those sneaky put backs. If this team can continue to do what it has done the past 20 games it will definitely be looked at as Barnes greatest masterpiece.

Since: Nov 20, 2008
Posted on: January 31, 2011 3:45 am

All hail mighty Texas; Horns maul the Tigers

Very Wierd team: 2010-2011 Texas Longhorns

Maybe the most talented and deep team a year ago, goes 10-8 in conference, can't win a first round tournament game...loses 3 players to the NBA in Damian James, Dexter Pittman and Avery Bradley....loses another 4 year starter (Justin Mason)...loses two young studs to transfers: Varez Ward  (point guard to be after almost single-handedly beating Duke 2 years ago) and Shawn Williams (top 20 national recruit in 2009)...picks up the crumbs, and appears to be a nasty final four team...GO FIGURE

Since: Nov 20, 2008
Posted on: January 31, 2011 3:37 am

All hail mighty Texas; Horns maul the Tigers


Since: Nov 20, 2008
Posted on: January 31, 2011 3:04 am

All hail mighty Texas; Horns maul the Tigers

IF they beat A&M Monday they will run the table...but it's a big IF...I think A&M will win in a close one. After losing to Nebraska, A&M is desperate and Texas has to be tired after their recent run.  Texas is a strange story...An incredibly deep and talented team a year ago that goes 10-8 in conference and can't win a single tournament game.  They lose 3 players to the NBA (James, Pittman and Bradley), they lose another 4 year starter in Justin Mason...and then they lose two young studs to transfers...Varez Ward who was the point guard to be after he nearly single-handedly beat Duke 2 years ago as a freshman, and Shawn Williams who was one of the top 2009 recruits in the country.  They pick up the left-overs and you have THIS team??? Very wierd!

Since: May 21, 2007
Posted on: January 30, 2011 11:06 pm

All hail mighty Texas; Horns maul the Tigers

You must mean "cusp," not "crisp." But you're right. The Tarheels are better than people give them credit, and the Longhorns are also. There is no bigger win for Texas in the last five years than their recent win on the road at undefeated Kansas, breaking their 69-game winning streak. That was simply astounding. I have seen Texas play this year, when they barely beat a so-so Rice squad at home. That means that I haven't really seen Texas play this year, because they are dominating far better teams right now. I didn't realize that Balbay was their defensive specialist, but that everyone else is contributing, especially Gary Johnson and Corey Joseph. The offense is pretty good, especially Jordan Hamilton, but it's defense that is the difference maker. And Rick Barnes as coach. He is good. Make that "great." It should be fun watching the Longhorns the rest of the way. This win over number eleven Missouri is no surprise after the win at Kansas and the earlier wins of UNC and MSU and Texas A&M. Monday they travel to play Texas A&M on the road. That would be a trap game.

Since: Nov 4, 2010
Posted on: January 30, 2011 9:00 pm

All hail mighty Texas; Horns maul the Tigers

Man I wish UNC would have held on agaisnt you guys.  what a signature win Texas would be on our season resume.  I personally feel that UNC gave the game away, but if I were a Texas fan, I would probably say we just showed more grit and won.  Texas is a really good team and I think they could really go deep in the NCAA this year.  Seeing Texas play this way, especially to what they did at Kansas, makes me think that my Heels are right on the crisp of getting back to elite play.  Time will tell...

Since: Jan 21, 2010
Posted on: January 30, 2011 3:15 pm

All hail mighty Texas; Horns maul the Tigers

All the things you guys were lacking last year. Texas could very well go 16-0 through the league this year.

Since: Sep 8, 2009
Posted on: January 30, 2011 12:45 pm

All hail mighty Texas; Horns maul the Tigers

Smothering Defense.  Versatile bench.  Teamwork.  This team has the recipe for a deep run this year.  HOOK 'EM!!!

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