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Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Longhorns suffer emotional hangover, can’t hang with KU

Kansas guard Devonte’ Graham (4) celebrates on the court near Texas guard Javan Felix (3) in the Jayhawks win over the Longhorns Monday, Feb. 29, 2016 at the Frank Erwin Center in Austin, Texas.

Kansas guard Devonte’ Graham (4) celebrates on the court near Texas guard Javan Felix (3) in the Jayhawks win over the Longhorns Monday, Feb. 29, 2016 at the Frank Erwin Center in Austin, Texas.

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— Both basketball teams playing a Big 12 game in the Erwin Center were coming off emotional victories two days previous.

One handled it well, the other poorly.

“Kansas was terrific,” Texas coach Shaka Smart said. “They played really well. Their guys shot the ball well and attacked. I thought they played really free and loose and aggressive. Part of that was, our defensive energy and toughness and fight was nowhere near where it needed to be.”

Both coaches said they discussed with their players the importance of not experiencing an emotional letdown in the wake of big victories. Kansas clinched a tie for the Big 12 title Saturday with a victory against Texas Tech in Allen Fieldhouse.

Texas used a 22-0 run late in the game Saturday to score a comeback victory against Oklahoma.

“Kansas was terrific, but from our end, from the Texas end, that was one of our biggest issues tonight,” Smart said of guarding against an emotional letdown. “We didn’t handle (the emotional hangover from) Saturday well. That was a really big win.”

Texas point guard Isaiah Taylor, battling plantar fasciitis, was in a great deal of pain Sunday, according to Smart, but decided to play Monday. He didn’t play well and made just one of 10 shots from the field and had one assist in 28 minutes of action.

Smart didn’t use that as an excuse and was just answering questions about Taylor honestly.

“They’ve gotten better,” Smart said of the Jayhawks. “They’ve really played to their strengths, and they’ve also really improved on the defensive end.”

— See what people were saying about No. 1-ranked KU’s Big Monday game at Texas during KUsports.com’s live coverage.


More news and notes from KU’s dominant victory at Texas


By the Numbers: Kansas 86, Texas 56

By the Numbers: Kansas 86, Texas 56

Comments

Jay Scott 3 years, 8 months ago

They lack talent. Shaka ball is effective when you haven't seen it. Not so much when you have. The lone conference title in all the JV leagues Shaka's VCU played in is evidence of this.

Dale Rogers 3 years, 8 months ago

Well-applied pressure is effective no matter how many times you have seen it. You can make it less effective by learning how to deal with it and that's what we have done.

I also want to say I've been impressed with Shaka Smart's graciousness in defeat and his willingness to comment positively about his opponent. I also like what he's doing with his team at Texas. Texas is definitely on its way to a return to being a team to reckon with in the Big 12, in my opinion.

Micky Baker 3 years, 8 months ago

Dale, the key to us destroying their press last night was passing over the top before the traps were in place. Our guys that received those passes didn't stand in one spot. They made a move and sharp cuts that got them open and it made Texas have to run hard to get back on defense. That prevented turnovers. Texas did get back quickly and kept from allowing a lot of fast break points, but they didn't get nearly as many stops as they probably thought they were going to get.

Patrick Bryant 3 years, 8 months ago

My opinion is that no matter where Texas was emotionally, physically, mentally they would have lost last night. UT had little bearing on the game, it was all KU. The way KU was passing the ball, playing D and scoring last night any team in America would have been hard pressed to slow them down. RCJH x 12!

Robert Robinson 3 years, 8 months ago

I think Shaka ball is and will be affective from here on out. To say the pressure isn't as effective the second time I think is a little far fetched. Yes it may be slightly easier bit it's still effective. Look at our record at WVU. I also agree that with the confidence KU played with, Texas could have had their best performance of the year and KU still would have come out on top

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